Primary Schools

Oral Answers to Questions — Wales – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 29 March 1993.

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Photo of Mr David Knox Mr David Knox , Staffordshire Moorlands 12:00, 29 March 1993

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how much was spent per pupil in primary schools in Wales in the most recent year for which figures are available; and what was the comparable figure for 1978–79 at constant prices.

Photo of Mr Wyn Roberts Mr Wyn Roberts , Conwy

Expenditure per pupil in primary schools was £1,398 in 1990–91, compared with £1,038 in 1978–79 on the same price basis. This represents an increase of 34·7 per cent.

Photo of Mr David Knox Mr David Knox , Staffordshire Moorlands

Is my right hon. Friend satisfied that sufficient money is being delegated to schools in Wales?

Photo of Mr Wyn Roberts Mr Wyn Roberts , Conwy

No, we are not satisfied that local education authorities are delegating sufficient moneys to schools in Wales. However, from this April, at least 85 per cent. of the potential schools budget must be delegated to schools, with at least 80 per cent. of the aggregated schools budget delegated on the basis of pupil numbers weighted for age.

Photo of Mr Alex Carlile Mr Alex Carlile , Montgomery

Will the right hon. Gentleman clearly affirm his own and his Department's commitment to the retention of village primary schools in rural Wales, notwithstanding the fact that on a cost-per-child basis, they sometimes cost a little more than urban or area schools?

Photo of Mr Wyn Roberts Mr Wyn Roberts , Conwy

We have made special allowances for rural schools in sparsely populated areas in the local management of schools formula. I am very glad that the hon. and learned Gentleman's local education authority, Powys, is contemplating the delegation of as much as 95 per cent. of the potential schools budget to local schools.