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Written Question
Primary Education: Standards
20 Mar 2017, midnight

Questioner: Jeremy Quin

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps the Government is taking to improve the quality of primary education.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

We have placed phonics at the heart of the early teaching of reading as we want all children to be fluent readers by the time they leave primary school. Results from this year’s phonics screening check show that, since its introduction in 2012, over 147,000 more six year olds are now on track to become excellent readers.

We are also investing £41m to enable primary schools to introduce highly effective south-east Asian mastery teaching methods, and we introduced a new more rigorous primary curriculum in 2014 raising standards in reading, writing and maths throughout the primary school phase.


Written Question
Schools: West Sussex
9 Mar 2017, midnight

Questioner: Jeremy Quin

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to the Answer of 4 December 2015 to Question 17715, on schools in West Sussex, what criteria was used to make the decision between fringe and non-fringe areas in West Sussex.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

Within West Sussex, the Crawley district forms part of the London fringe, while the rest of the local authority area is outside the fringe. The distinction is a longstanding feature of the teachers’ pay system, dating back at least 30 years. Decisions on pay, including the current geographical criteria for designating fringe areas, are based on recommendations by the School Teachers’ Review Body (STRB). This independent body was established in 1991 to examine and report on matters relating to the statutory conditions of pay and employment of school teachers in England and Wales. The STRB can review the boundaries for the fringe if requested to do so by the Secretary of State.

London fringe area arrangements have been part of the mainstream school funding system since financial year 2013 to 2014. Since the school funding reforms were introduced in that year, they have been a feature of the local funding formulae in the five local authorities who have some of their schools within the London fringe area (Buckinghamshire, Essex, Hertfordshire and Kent, along with West Sussex), enabling an uplift to be applied to the affected schools’ budgets.


Written Question
Schools: West Sussex
9 Mar 2017, midnight

Questioner: Jeremy Quin

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to the Answer of 4 December 2015 to Question 17715, on schools in West Sussex, whether the distinction between fringe and non-fringe areas in West Sussex is subject to review and if so on what basis.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

Within West Sussex, the Crawley district forms part of the London fringe, while the rest of the local authority area is outside the fringe. The distinction is a longstanding feature of the teachers’ pay system, dating back at least 30 years. Decisions on pay, including the current geographical criteria for designating fringe areas, are based on recommendations by the School Teachers’ Review Body (STRB). This independent body was established in 1991 to examine and report on matters relating to the statutory conditions of pay and employment of school teachers in England and Wales. The STRB can review the boundaries for the fringe if requested to do so by the Secretary of State.

London fringe area arrangements have been part of the mainstream school funding system since financial year 2013 to 2014. Since the school funding reforms were introduced in that year, they have been a feature of the local funding formulae in the five local authorities who have some of their schools within the London fringe area (Buckinghamshire, Essex, Hertfordshire and Kent, along with West Sussex), enabling an uplift to be applied to the affected schools’ budgets.


Written Question
Schools: West Sussex
9 Mar 2017, midnight

Questioner: Jeremy Quin

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to the Answer of 4 December 2015 to Question 17715, on schools in West Sussex, in what year her Department first made the distinction between fringe and non-fringe areas in West Sussex.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

Within West Sussex, the Crawley district forms part of the London fringe, while the rest of the local authority area is outside the fringe. The distinction is a longstanding feature of the teachers’ pay system, dating back at least 30 years. Decisions on pay, including the current geographical criteria for designating fringe areas, are based on recommendations by the School Teachers’ Review Body (STRB). This independent body was established in 1991 to examine and report on matters relating to the statutory conditions of pay and employment of school teachers in England and Wales. The STRB can review the boundaries for the fringe if requested to do so by the Secretary of State.

London fringe area arrangements have been part of the mainstream school funding system since financial year 2013 to 2014. Since the school funding reforms were introduced in that year, they have been a feature of the local funding formulae in the five local authorities who have some of their schools within the London fringe area (Buckinghamshire, Essex, Hertfordshire and Kent, along with West Sussex), enabling an uplift to be applied to the affected schools’ budgets.


Written Question
Schools: Admissions
30 Nov 2015, midnight

Questioner: Jeremy Quin

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps she is taking to provide parents of summer-born children with flexibility to decide in which year group their children start school.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

We are concerned that some parents of summer born children either feel forced to send their children to school before they are ready, and before compulsory school age, or risk missing the reception year at school where the essential teaching of early reading and arithmetic takes place.

Subject to parliamentary approval, we have therefore decided to amend the School Admissions Code to ensure that summer born children can be admitted to the reception class at the age of five, where this is what their parents want, and can remain with that cohort as they progress through school, including through to secondary school. We will conduct a full public consultation in due course.
I recently set out this policy intent in an open letter to parents, schools and local authorities. The letter is available here: www.gov.uk/government/publications/summer-born-children-nick-gibbs-letter-about-school-admissions.