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Departmental Consultants

Volume 468: debated on Wednesday 28 November 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what his latest estimate is of expenditure by his Department and its predecessor on all forms of consultancy for each (a) year and (b) quarter from 31 March 1997; and if he will make a statement. (163552)

Historical figures are not available for DCSF and could be provided only at disproportionate cost. Figures for the Department for Education and Skills show that it spent the following sums from administration costs on consultancy from 1997:

£ million

1997-98

3.9

1998-99

5.0

1999-2000

3.7

2000-01

4.3

2001-02

5.0

2002-03

4.0

2003-04

4.7

2004-05

3.9

2005-06

3.5

2006-07

4.1

The costs of consultancy charged to programmes budgets before November 2004 were not recorded centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost. The total cost of consultancy charged to programmes from November to March 2004-05 was £4.4 million and for the whole of 2005-06 was £18 million. A further £9.5 million in November to March 2004-05 and £8 million in 2005-06 was spent on other external expert advisers on education and children’s matters to assist with policy implementation and delivery. The total cost of consultancy charged to programmes for 2006-07 was £41 million with a further £14 million spent on other external expert advisers.

Quarterly information could be provided only at disproportionate cost.