asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science when he expects to issue his draft circular to local authorities concerning public sector higher education; and if he will make a statement.
I expect within a few days to issue a further education circular letter on the approval of advanced courses in further education; this will indicate the guidelines within which my right hon. and learned Friend's approval for such courses to start in 1980 and 1981 will be given; there are no immediate plans to issue any general statement concerning public sector higher education.
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science how much money he is estimating to save from the public sector higher education budget in the financial year 1980–81.
girls, respectively, which have been provisionally offered by private schools in each of the areas of England and Wales used for purposes of regional planning.
Direct grant grammar schools and independent secondary schools were invited by the Department's letter of 6 December to indicate on a provisional basis and without commitment at this stage whether they were likely to be interested in joining the assisted places scheme and, if so, approximately how many assisted places annually they might offer. The table following gives the approximate number of places offered on this basis in replies received up to and including 4 February; further replies are expected. It is, of course, too early to say how many of the schools concerned are likely to meet the requirements of the scheme, and how many of the places offered will be accepted.
The Government's expenditure plans, as embodied in the 1980–81 rate support grant settlement, assume that in maintained higher education the resources available for home students will be held broadly at their current level while public expenditure on overseas students will be reduced by about £5 million.