§ Mr. Spearing
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what opportunities she has given local education authorities to participate in an experimental method of allocation of funds for school building; what application she received from the Inner London Education Authority in this respect; and what reply she has sent.
§ Mrs. Thatcher
In 1971 I invited five local education authorities to participate in an experimental scheme of block allocations for educational building projects to be started during the financial year 1974–75. In 1972 I extended this invitation to a further 19 authorities in respect of projects to be started during the financial year 1975–76. The scheme includes allocations for major projects to meet primary and secondary basic needs and minor works, but not major projects for improving or replacing primary or secondary schools. The Inner London Education Authority was represented on the working party which led to the setting up of this scheme. I did not invite it to participate in it because basic needs in the Inner London area are small and diminishing due to an overall decline in school populations. I have not received any application from the authority concerning the scheme.529W