§ Helen Jones
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment if he has appointed consultants to help to improve education services in Hackney. 
§ Ms Estelle Morris
I am pleased to announce that we have appointed KPMG to work with Hackney LEA to secure urgent improvements in the education service in the light of the recent OFSTED/Audit Commission report.
KPMG will start work immediately on specifications which can be used as a basis for contracting out certain LEA functions, as set out in the Secretary of State's letter on 19 March to the authority.
In addition, KPMG will work with the LEA on revising its Education Development Plan and drawing up an Action Plan to address the other recommendations in the Ofsted Inspection report.
The decision to appoint KPMG was made on the basis of quality of their proposals, the calibre of their personnel and overall value for money.