Schedule 5 — Repeals

Part of Rental Accommodation (Thermal Insulation Standards) – in the House of Commons at 9:30 pm on 23rd February 2010.

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Photo of Vernon Coaker Vernon Coaker Minister of State (Department for Children, Schools and Families) (Schools and Learners) 9:30 pm, 23rd February 2010

I beg to move, That the Bill be now read the Third time.

I hope to leave time for other hon. Members to say a few words, so I shall be brief. I would like to thank members of the Public Bill Committee. We did not always agree, but we had interesting and thorough debates on a number of issues. I would particularly like to thank the hon. Members for Bognor Regis and Littlehampton (Mr. Gibb) and for East Worthing and Shoreham (Tim Loughton) for their constructive approach in Committee. They will know from some of the amendments that we took note of some of their comments. I would also like to thank the hon. Members for Yeovil (Mr. Laws) and for Mid-Dorset and North Poole (Annette Brooke) for all their work in Committee. I thank everyone else, including my ministerial colleagues, for their support in helping me to reach this point.

The Children, Schools and Families Bill is one for the future of our country. It is possible only because of the improvements made over the last 13 years and that have been underpinned by record levels of funding in our schools and children's services, as well as the reforms passed by this House. It builds on a decade of ever-increasing standards of pupil achievement, investment in buildings and the work force and the development of one of the most robust children's safeguarding systems in the world.

The Bill contains numerous reforms for the future, which I would like to highlight briefly. We make a great step forward with PSHE-personal, health, social and economic education-as we make it compulsory from September 2011. One or two Members may wish to intervene on this issue, so let me make it very clear that faith schools will not be able to opt out of any elements of statutory PSHE, including sex and relationships education, and they will have to deliver the programme of study for this subject like every other school. Schools with a religious character will still be required to cover in their teaching of PSHE the full range of the content prescribed. Similarly, such schools will, like all others, be under a duty to deliver PSHE in a way that is compliant with the principles set out in the Bill.

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