§ Dr. Kim Howells
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science how many vacancies in teacher-shortage subject areas have been filled by the announcement of the incentive allowance system; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Alan Howarth
Incentive allowances were introduced in October 1987. They may be awarded to teachers who teach subjects in which there is a shortage of teachers, or who are employed in posts which are difficult to fill. There is evidence that an increasing number of allowances is being awarded on these grounds, but it is impossible to estimate how many teacher vacancies would not otherwise have been filled.