§ [The Question was as follows:
§ To ask Her Majesty's Government why the Department of Education and Science seeks to distinguish schoolchildren whose parents came to this country on or after January 1, 1960, from those whose parents came to this country before that date, and advise that only the former should be classified as immigrant pupils; and whether any other Government Department employs this particular definition for statistical purposes.]
§ BARONESS PHILLIPS
My Lords, if a child's parents were born outside this country, and have lived here for less than ten years, the child is included, together with children born outside the United Kingdom or Eire, in the Department's statistics of immigrant pupils. The object is to assess the number of children who may have special educational difficulties because they or their families are newcomers to this country. Other Government Departments have different operational needs and do not use this definition.
§ LORD ELTON
My Lords, while thanking the noble Baroness for that Answer, which I shall have to study because I could not really follow it all, I should also like to ask if she can make it clearer than I think she did whether this directive was based on the assumption that children of parents who have been here for more than ten years no longer face the problems which confront 710 other immigrant pupils. Secondly, is there any Government Department which classifies, or has classified, as adult immigrants only those who have been here less than eleven years?
§ BARONESS PHILLIPS
My Lords, in reply to the first part of the noble Lord's question, may I say that he is correct in assuming that that is the basis of the statistics. But I would tell him that the Department is now looking into the question of this ten-year basis and a review is being undertaken because, as the noble Lord has so rightly pointed out, it has been found that some children have educational needs which go beyond this period, whereas others adjust much more quickly. I cannot give the noble Lord a reply about the other Departments.
§ LORD DERWENT
My Lords, may I ask the noble Baroness whether, when the review has taken place, a statement will be made so that we can all understand what is meant by the statistics which we are given from time to time?