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Education

Volume 671: debated on Tuesday 4 February 2020

Teacher Recruitment and Retention

The following is an extract from Questions to the Secretary of State for Education on 20 January 2020.

Those who serve in Her Majesty’s armed forces represent the very best of British. What is being done to turn troops into teachers when veterans leave the armed forces?

My hon. Friend raises a good point. Veterans make attractive members of staff in our schools, they inspire young people and help to improve behaviour. Our Troops to Teachers scheme was slow to begin with, but it is now proving successful in recruiting Army leavers.

[Official Report, 20 January 2020, Vol. 670, c. 6.]

Letter of correction from the Minister for School Standards, the right hon. Member for Bognor Regis and Littlehampton (Nick Gibb):

An error has been identified in the answer I gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Kettering (Mr Hollobone).

The correct answer should have been:

My hon. Friend raises a good point. Veterans make attractive members of staff in our schools, they inspire young people and help to improve behaviour. Our Troops to Teachers scheme was slow to begin with, but its successor, the Troops to Teachers initial teacher training bursary, is now proving successful in recruiting Army leavers.

Further Education

The following is an extract from Questions to the Secretary of State for Education on 20 January 2020.

More than three quarters of sixth-form colleges do not believe they have the funding they need to support disadvantaged students. The FE sector, the Education Committee and the Labour party speak with one voice in supporting the Raise the Rate campaign to increase per-pupil funding to £4,760. Despite warm words from the Secretary of State, the funding needed has not appeared. He talks about it being a crucial sector, so when will he make good on his promise to work hand in glove with the FE sector by both restoring the position of FE and Skills Minister and raising the rate to £4,760?

I welcome the hon. Lady to her position and wish her the very best in her new role, although I thought she was a little ungenerous in her comments. Just in the past six months, we have delivered an extra £400 million for 16-to-19 education; committed an extra £1.8 billion to FE colleges’ funding; and created a national skills fund to be delivered over three years, worth more than £3 billion. In my judgment, that is a lot of money and a real investment in our college sector. We are giving them the opportunity to achieve so very much. We see the opportunity and have every confidence they will deliver.

[Official Report, 20 January 2020, Vol. 670, c. 12.]

Letter of correction from the Secretary of State for Education, the right hon. Member for South Staffordshire (Gavin Williamson):

An error has been identified in the answer I gave to the hon. Member for Kingston upon Hull West and Hessle (Emma Hardy).

The correct answer should have been:

I welcome the hon. Lady to her position and wish her the very best in her new role, although I thought she was a little ungenerous in her comments. Just in the past six months, we have delivered an extra £400 million for 16-to-19 education; committed an extra £1.8 billion to FE colleges’ funding; and created a national skills fund to be delivered over the course of this Parliament, worth more than £3 billion. In my judgment, that is a lot of money and a real investment in our college sector. We are giving them the opportunity to achieve so very much. We see the opportunity and have every confidence they will deliver.