§ 1998. Mr. Paterson
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what changes have been made to the criteria qualifying primary school children for special needs status in(a) 1997, (b)(c) 1999, (d) 2000 and (e) 2001. 
§ Mr. Timms
It is for Local Education Authorities and maintained schools to identify and make suitable provision for all children who may have special educational needs in the light of the provisions of Park IV of the Education Act 1996, the Education (Special Educational Needs) Regulations 1994, and the statutory advice contained in the "Code of Practice on the identification and assessment of Special Educational Needs", published in 1994. This situation has remained unchanged between 1997 and 2001. From January 2002 a revised Special Educational Needs Code of Practice. which was approved recently by both Houses of Parliament, amendments to Part IV of the Education Act 1996 brought about by the SEN and Disability Act 2001 and revised Special Educational Needs Regulations will come into effect.
§ Mr. Paterson
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what the funding regime for primary school pupils with special needs status was in(a) England and (b) Shropshire in (1) 1997. (ii) 1998. (iii) 1999, (iv) 2000 and (v) 2001. 
§ Mr. Timms
Some special educational needs (SEN) funding is delegated to primary schools by local education authorities (LEAs) in budget shares, with amounts calculated for each school on the basis of factors which measure need either directly or indirectly. Other SEN funding is held centrally by LEAs and spent as required on pupils, for example on extra support for pupils with statements of SEN. This basic pattern has obtained in all five years mentioned, although the proportion of funding held centrally has declined since Fair Funding succeeded Local Management of Schools in 1999. In Shropshire, funding for primary age pupils with statements of SEN was held centrally before 2001, but some is now delegated to schools on the basis of eight bands of need. In 1997 and 1998 SEN funding for pupils with SEN but without statements was based on the proportion of pupils eligible for free school meals; from 1999 a further indicator—the number of pupils on the SEN register at stages 2–4 of the SEN Code of Practice—has been used. From 1997 to 2000 schools with SEN units received place-led funding for such units; in 2001 this was subsumed into delegated funding for pupils with statements.
§ Mr. Paterson
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills (1) what the average percentage of children with special needs status in(a) English and (b) Shropshire primary schools was in (i) 1997, (ii) 1998, (iii) 1999, (iv) 2000 and (v) 2001; 713W
(2) how many special needs status primary school (c) Shropshire in (i) 1997, (ii) 1998, (iii) 1999, (iv) 2000 and (v) 2001. 
Number and percentage of pupils with statements of special educational needs in maintained primary schools UK1 England Shropshire2 Shropshire2 Telford and Wrekin2 Number Percentage Number Percentage Number Percentage Number Percentage Number Percentage January each year 1997 75,400 1.4 63,551 1.4 885 2.3 3— 3— 3— 3— 1998 79,300 1.5 67,014 1.5 894 2.3 3— 3— 3— 3— 1999 82,100 1.5 69,797 1.6 3— 3— 553 2.4 337 2.2 2000 84,900 1.6 72,525 1.6 3— 3— 529 2.3 311 2 20014 88,200 1.7 75,300 1.7 3— 3— 3— 3— 3— 3— 1For Scotland, pupils with a Record of Needs 2As a result of local government reorganisation in April 1998, Shropshire local education authority divided to form the following local education authorities: Shropshire LEA and Telford and Wrekin LEA 3 Not applicable 4 Special educational needs figures from the annual schools census for January 2001 are known to be incomplete. In order to provide reasonably comparable figures to previous years an estimate has been made based on the annual schools census returns for January 2000 and January 2001. These estimates are robust at national and Government Office region but are not available at local education authority level 5Not available