§ Mr. Gordon Prentice
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment what is the lowest hourly rate for(a) full-time and (b) part-time staff employed (i) by central Government and (ii) by next steps agencies. 
§ Mr. Jack
I have been asked to reply.
Two thirds of civil servants have their pay determined in 1995–96 under delegated arrangements, for which information on pay rates is not held centrally. The following figures relate to pay rates agreed under national arrangements.
The lowest national civil service pay rate is £4,669 per year for an administrative assistant and typist, aged 16 years. This is £2.43 per hour based on a net 37-hour week. Very few staff will be on this pay point. Aside from age points, the lowest national civil service pay rate is £6,928 for the administrative assistant grade, or £3.60 per hour for a net 37-hour week.