HC Deb 18 May 2004 vol 421 cc912-4W
Mr. Steen

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what the eligibility criteria are for the education maintenance allowance (EMA) to be introduced in September; whether students aged under 16 years studying academic or vocational courses in further education for more than 12 hours of guided learning per week will be eligible for the EMA; and whether 15 to 17 year olds in further education are eligible for any other financial assistance. [172041]

Mr. Ivan Lewis

[holding answer 11 May 2004]: A young person will be entitled to receive EMA under the national scheme if they: are a UK citizen; or a citizen of an EEA country with at least three years' continued residence in the UK; or have been granted Refugee status or Indefinite Leave to remain or Temporary Protection in the UK: reach the age of 16 between 31 August 2003 and 1 September 2004 and enter full time education in the 2004–05 academic year in September 2004; live in a household with an annual income of £30,000 or less; and undertake at least 12 hours of guided learning on further education courses at, or provided by, a recognised educational institution in England (for example, school sixth forms, a sixth form college or FE college. The chosen course can be either academic or vocational.

Young people who have skipped a year and are 15 when taking up further education are not eligible on the grounds of age. EMA is not based on the academic level a pupil reaches: it is targeted at those who have reached the end of their compulsory school education.

Young people in further education aged 16 and over who are not eligible for EMA may be eligible for other financial assistance. This includes the Learner Support Fund, Connexions Card, Dance and Drama Awards,

Essex Southend Thurrock
Candidates Passes Average Candidates Passes Average Candidates Passes Average
1992 6,657 13,773 2.1
1993 6,656 15,513 2.3
1994 6,601 15,716 2.4
1995 6,368 16,040 2.5
1996 6,213 15,977 2.6
1997 6,691 17,635 2.6
1998 6,419 17,107 2.7 898 2,441 2.7 640 1,410 2.2
1999 6,418 17,194 2.7 1,098 3,086 2.8 617 1,364 2.2
2000 6,497 17,702 2.7 982 2,841 2.9 659 1,393 2.1
2001 6,369 17,796 2.8 1,038 2,967 2.9 651 1,451 2.2
2002 6,271 19,556 3.1 1,039 3,418 3.3 804 1,841 2.3
2003 6,428 20,783 3.2 1,197 3,673 3.1 698 1,834 2.6
1. Age is at the beginning of academic year.
2. The table includes A level candidates in maintained schools and Further Education Sector colleges. Candidates in independent schools are not included.
3. We do not have comparable information at Local Education Authority level for years earlier than 1992.

Simon Hughes

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many primary school closures there were in Greater London, broken down by local education authority, in each year since 1997. [173254]

Mr. Miliband

The numbers of primary school closures in Greater London during the calendar years

Care to Learn and other discretionary support made through colleges and schools. Young people aged 15 but in further education may receive support from their local authority.

Colin Burgon

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what estimate he has made of the uptake of the educational maintenance allowance in(a) Leeds and (b) Elmet constituency. [173393]

Mr. Ivan Lewis

[holding answer 14 May 20041]: Leeds is an EMA pilot area and at present there are 4,764 students in receipt of EMA. We estimate that the number of recipients will be broadly similar after the launch of the national scheme in September. Across Yorkshire and Humberside as a whole, around 24,000 16-year-olds will be eligible for EMA.

We are unable to provide forecasts for numbers down to constituency level.