Department for Education written question – answered on 1st August 2019.

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Photo of Lord Blencathra Lord Blencathra Chair, Delegated Powers and Regulatory Reform Committee

To ask Her Majesty's Government what is their justification for backing a scheme to ask students (1) how often they should change their sheets, and (2) how to cook a meal; and whether they have an official policy on the frequency with which sheets should be changed; and if so, what it is.

Photo of Lord Agnew of Oulton Lord Agnew of Oulton The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Education

The Leap Core Skills workshops were announced by the former Secretary of State for Education (Damian Hinds), my right hon. Friend, for East Hampshire on 10 July. They have been developed by student accommodation provider Unite Students, who will offer schools and colleges the workshop resources for teaching Years 12 and 13 pupils about independent living, managing personal finances, developing and maintaining relationships and also how and where to access support, should they go to university. The sessions have no focus on cooking or changing bedsheets, and government has no official policy in these areas.

Data show that 7.6% of entrants to full-time first degrees in England in 2016/17 did not continue with their studies in the following year. Our priority is to reduce the proportion of undergraduates who discontinue their studies for whatever reason. Providing the right pastoral care will contribute to this.

The Leap Skills workshops are being promoted to schools and colleges through the Education Transitions Network created by the former Secretary of State for Education (Damian Hinds), my right hon. Friend, for East Hampshire, to look at how students moving from sixth-form or college to university can be better supported in their crucial first year.

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