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Schools Funding

Volume 407: debated on Friday 20 June 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether he assists in the funding of schools attended by children of Service personnel (a) on an annual basis and (b) to help with financial shortfalls caused by falling school rolls arising from delays in transferring regiments; and if he will make a statement. [120354]

I am aware that changes to unit deployments in the hon. Member's constituency, especially those connected with operations in Iraq, have affected school numbers and funding. Our local schools liaison officer recently attended a meeting of headteachers to explain the reasons for these changes. Funding for schools is the responsibility of the Department for Education and Skills and Devolved Administrations. However, we aim to maintain close liaison with local education authorities and schools to help resolve problems and give early notification to assist in planning. I regret that it was not possible on this occasion to give the customary advance notice.