§ Mr. Steinberg
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment what is the final date on which teachers can apply for early retirement under the existing regulations. 
§ Mrs. Gillan
Teachers do not apply for premature retirement under the regulations. Premature retirement is at employer's discretion. Arrangements whereby teachers express a wish to be granted premature retirement by their employers are for local determination. Under my right hon. Friend's proposals, employers would pay part of the pension to teachers under 60 to whom they granted premature retirement, for all those teachers whose date of retirement is 1 April 1997 or later.