§ Mr. Martin Bell
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment what action he will take to help those children who were to have moved from primary to secondary education under the assisted places scheme. 
§ Ms Estelle Morris
The Education (Schools) Act 1997 contains a discretionary power to allow children in receipt of primary education to continue to hold their assisted places for a further period in which they receive secondary education. Any application for such an extension is considered on its individual merits and discretion is exercised where it is reasonable to do so in view of the particular circumstances relating to the child. Of the 356 applications we have received to date, 205 have been approved.