Parliamentary Speeches, Debates & Questions

OCTOBER 2020

Social Mobility – Question (15 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, we welcome the Social Mobility Commission’s report and its contribution to the evidence supporting our levelling-up agenda. The report confirms that education plays a key role in spreading opportunities so that every child in every part of the country has a fair chance. That is why we have announced the biggest funding boost for schools in a decade, giving schools more money for…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Industry: Carbon Emissions (15 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government is committed to making the skills system more responsive to employer skill..

Written Answers — Department for Education: Lifetime Skills Guarantee: Apprentices (14 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Apprenticeships will be more important than ever in helping businesses, in all sectors, to…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Lifetime Skills Guarantee: Disability (14 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Further education providers are autonomous organisations. They are responsible for arranging access to their education and training provision, which from next year will include the new level 3 entitlement announced by my right hon. Friend, the Prime Minister as part of the Lifetime Skills Guarantee. We would expect providers to ensure appropriate access to their education and training for…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Protective Clothing (13 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: At each stage of the department’s response to the COVID-19 outbreak, we have listened to the latest medical and scientific advice, and if we think that the guidance should be revised based on further evidence then we will not hesitate to act swiftly and decisively. On 21 August, the World Health Organisation published a new statement advising that “children aged 12 and over should wear a…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pupil Premium (13 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We are committed to levelling up opportunities to make sure everyone has a fair chance to…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Home Education (13 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: In the spring of 2019 a consultation was held on proposals for a mandatory register of children…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Racial Harassment (13 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We are clear that there is no place for racism in schools and our wider education system. All…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Care Leavers: Digital Technology (13 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: In April 2020, the government invested £100 million into laptops and 4G wireless routers for…

Written Answers — Department for Education: History: Education (13 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Department officials have discussed the flexible scope of the history curriculum, and the…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Education: Standards (12 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government is taking steps to close the attainment gap for disabled and disadvantaged…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Music: GCE A-level and GCSE (12 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: This information is not yet available for the academic year 2019/20. It will become available…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Assessments: Coronavirus (12 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department recognises that there is a small group of students for whom there was not…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Day Care (12 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government funds a generous package of free and subsidised childcare. Parents can find…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children and Young People (12 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government is aware that the COVID-19 outbreak has resulted in increased pressure on the…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Department for Education: Sanitation (8 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: In previous questions from the noble Lord regarding the visitor’s toilets in Sanctuary Buildings….

Written Answers — Department for Education: National Skills Fund (8 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Starting this Parliament, the government is providing £2.5 billion (£3 billion when including…

Lifetime Skills Guarantee and Post-16 Education – Statement (6 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: I too pay tribute to the work of my noble friend. It was my pleasure to host a round table of UTCs which have been particularly successful. The noble Lord, Lord Storey, mentioned them as well. In fact, a new UTC was opened in September in Darlington. The colleges have been particularly involved in the T-levels, which were introduced to give parity at the age of 16 between A-levels and…

Covid-19: School Students Learning From Home – Question (5 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the Government have already invested over £100 million to support remote education, including 250,000 additional devices for children who cannot attend school or if their school is closed. Understanding the impact of Covid disruption on attainment and progress is a key research priority for the Government. We have commissioned an independent research and assessment agency to…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Ofqual: Ethnic Groups (5 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: These are matters for Ofqual, the Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation. I have…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Special Educational Needs (5 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The number of children and young people with an education, health and care (EHC) plan is…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pupils: Voucher Schemes (2 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government has taken unprecedented and substantial action to ensure that children do not…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Qualifications (2 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Adult skills?are?key in supporting the economy and tackling disadvantage. The government is…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices: Coronavirus (2 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Apprenticeships will be more important than ever in helping businesses recruit the right people…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Colonialism: Education (2 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As set out in my reply to HL8049 from the noble Lord, the department sets the high-level…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Educational Institutions: Coronavirus (2 Oct 2020)

Baroness Berridge: On 2 July the department published guidance to help schools and colleges prepare for all pupils…

SEPTEMBER 2020

Written Answers — Department for Education: Education: Finance (30 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government previously announced on 31 August 2019 that it will invest an extra £400…

Written Answers — Department for Education: National Skills Fund (30 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government remains committed to consulting widely on the National Skills Fund to ensure…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Coronavirus (29 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department recognises that students due to sit exams and assessments next year will have…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Teachers: Pay (28 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government appreciates the hard work and dedication of all teachers, and recognises the…

Written Answers — Department for Education: History: Education (28 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department sets the content requirements for GCSE and A level history. Within this…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Coronavirus (28 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Getting all children and young people back into school for the new academic year has been a…

Gender Recognition Act Consultation – Commons Urgent Question (25 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, there has indeed been an extensive consultation on this matter. There were numerous contributions, including those outlined by the noble Lord. The matter of medical diagnosis is one for clinicians. After due consideration, the balance has been taken that the issues were to do with cost, bureaucracy and access to healthcare. The system as outlined in the Statement has been changed:…

Gender Recognition Act Consultation – Commons Urgent Question (25 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, it is clear from the response to the consultation that there will be no need for legislative action on this matter, so any guidance that is followed is as stands.

Gender Recognition Act Consultation – Commons Urgent Question (25 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the Government plan to open three further clinics, including one in Liverpool and a further one in London. I will have to write to the noble Baroness on specific timings, but it is hoped that those clinics will reduce waiting lists by about 1,600 people. Between 2015-16 and 2018-19, we doubled the funding spent on gender-specific medical services.

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices: Young People (25 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: On 27 August we published our latest data on apprenticeship starts. There were 53,530…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Mathematics (24 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department has announced the approval of 5 new maths schools into the pre-opening stage…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Literacy (24 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Education Endowment Foundation’s publication emphasises the importance of systematic…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Coronavirus (24 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: On 19 June, the government announced a £1 billion COVID-19 catch up package, including a…

Schools: Spending per Pupil – Question (23 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, we are investing more in schools over the next three years, starting with an additional £2.6 billion this year and rising to £7.1 billion by 2022-23, compared to 2019-20. This will ensure that per pupil funding for every school can rise at least in line with inflation this year, and faster than inflation for most. The IFS has said that this investment will near enough restore…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Assessments (23 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We are clear in our intention for exams and assessments to proceed next year. The department…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Teachers: Recruitment (23 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The information requested is not held centrally on the number of teachers recruited by…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Supply Teachers: Coronavirus (23 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: State funded schools continued to receive their budgets last year, as usual, regardless of any…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Coronavirus (23 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Schools have the flexibility to decide how physical education, sport and physical activity will be…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Business: Training (22 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: To equip people better to use digital tools and to adapt to the social distancing measures of…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Coronavirus (22 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department has already delivered over 220,000 laptops and tablets and over 50,000 4G…

Written Answers — Department for Education: GCE A-level and GCSE: Assessments (22 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department believes that examinations and assessments are the best and fairest way of…

Written Answers — Department for Education: GCSE: Assessments (21 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: All pupils should have the opportunity to study foreign languages as part of a core academic…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Education: Technology (21 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Technology holds enormous potential to amplify good teaching practices, reduce workload and…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Contracts (21 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government has provided guidance on Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) for all employers, which…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Assessments (18 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department undertakes a rigorous process to develop standardised statutory assessment…

Written Answers — Department for Education: National FGM Centre: Finance (18 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Female genital mutilation (FGM) is abuse and we want to eradicate this practice once and for…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pupils: Disadvantaged (18 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government is committed to ensuring that pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds can…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Disability and Special Educational Needs: Coronavirus (18 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As my hon. Friend, the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Children and Families, set…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Department for Education: Staff (17 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Staff in the department have been working remotely since the middle of March and have been…

Written Answers — Department for Education: National Tutoring Programme (17 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Education Endowment Foundation (EEF), our delivery partner on the Tuition Partner …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pupils: Coronavirus (17 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Parents can apply for a place at any school, at any time. The statutory School Admissions Code…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children in Care: Coronavirus (17 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: In terms of the numbers of children in care, the latest published figures show that 78,150…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Free School Meals (16 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The number of children who received a free school meal (FSM) during the 2020 summer…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Students: Coronavirus (16 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Guidance on the full opening of schools was published on 2 July and has been regularly updated..

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Coronavirus (16 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department has already invested over £100 million to support remote education and has…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices: Manufacturing Industries (16 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Through our ‘Plan for Jobs’ a total of £1.6 billion is to be invested in scaling up employment…

Written Answers — Department for Education: GCE A-level: Assessments (16 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Ministers have had discussions throughout the year with their counterparts from the devolved…

Examinations: A-level and GCSE – Question (15 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, this Government are committed to ensuring that students taking A-levels and GCSE exams in 2021 receive the qualifications that they deserve. Exams are the fairest way of judging students’ performance and we expect next year’s exams to go ahead. However, we recognise that students have experienced disruption to their education due to Covid-19. We will continue to work with…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Special Schools: Coronavirus (15 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: On 2 July, the department published guidance for the full opening of special schools, which is…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Playing Fields (15 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department records and publishes details of my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Young Men’s Christian Association: Coronavirus (15 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Every child and young person in the country has experienced unprecedented disruption to…

Schools: Free Holiday Meals and Activities – Question (14 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, this Government are determined to ensure that children eat healthily and lead active lives. We welcome the National Food Strategy’s recent report and will carefully consider its recommendations as we approach the next spending review, including in relation to holiday provision. We are proud to provide invaluable support to children who are eligible for free school meals, and have…

Schools and Colleges: Qualification Results and Full Opening – Statement (2 Sep 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I join the noble Lord, Lord Watson, in thanking young people for their resilience during a crisis this summer that no-one intended them to have to go through. I repeat to your Lordships’ House the apology made by the Secretary of State and in my letter to noble Lords. I thank the noble Lord for his wish to work constructively on these matters. On schools reopening, the main…

AUGUST 2020

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Day Care (13 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: In order to control the spread of COVID-19, early years settings were asked to only open for …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Adoption Support Fund (13 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Adoption Support Fund provides funds to local authorities and regional adoption agencies…

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Racial Discrimination (12 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: This Government is committed to tackling prejudice, racism and discrimination – and to…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Music: Education (11 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The arts form a vital part of children and young people’s education, and access to these…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Remote Education (11 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department has published user tested procurement guidance on GOV.UK as well as …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Social Services (11 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Care Review is a fundamental part of the government’s manifesto. While work has been …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Disability and Special Educational Needs (11 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government remains committed to completing the special educational needs and…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Foster Care (11 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government is clear that the needs of the child are paramount when making decisions…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Social Services (11 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department has undertaken a survey of pupils, parents and young people (including…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Free School Meals (11 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government will carefully consider the findings of the National Food Strategy Part…

Written Answers — Department for Education: STEM Subjects: Equality (11 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We want all students to see science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) as potential,…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Social Services (11 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department has been working closely with local authorities to assess the impact of the…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pre-school Education: Coronavirus (11 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: There are approximately 69,000 Ofsted-registered early years childcare providers and school…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pre-school Education: Coronavirus (11 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: In order to control the spread of COVID-19, early years providers were initially only open for…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Free School Meals: Voucher Schemes (11 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Throughout the duration of the free school meal voucher scheme, we have been working closely…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Health Education and Sex and Relationship Education (5 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We want to support all young people to be happy, healthy, and safe. We also want to equip…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Music: Education (5 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The teaching of singing, woodwind instruments, and brass instruments, including one-to-one…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Hearing Impairment: Coronavirus (4 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: During the COVID-19 outbreak, the department published guidance on online education…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Social Services (3 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Care Review is a fundamental part of the government’s manifesto, and will be launched as …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Computers and Education: Coronavirus (3 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government has provided laptops and tablets to disadvantaged children who would …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Teachers: Mental Health (3 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Following the government’s announcement in June of a pilot project with the Education Support …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Remote Education: Finance (3 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, the department is investing £14.3 million to fund …

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Equality: Coronavirus (3 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: This Government is learning as much and as quickly as possible about this virus, who it affects …

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Equality: Ethnic Groups and Gender (3 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: It is disappointing to see the disparities shown in the HESA Graduate Outcome Data publication

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Electronic Commerce (3 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Domestic anti-discrimination law is contained in the Equality Act 2010 (“the Act”)…

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Equal Pay: Disclosure of Information (3 Aug 2020)

Baroness Berridge: I refer the noble Baroness to the answer given to HL6083 on 3rd July 2020.

JULY 2020

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices (31 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As part of the government’s Plan for Jobs, apprenticeships will be more important than ever in …

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Gay Conversion Therapy (31 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Government takes this issue of Conversion Therapy very seriously and fundamentally…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Ports: Wales (30 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Skills training and education is devolved and therefore any training delivered in Wales to …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Arts: GCSE (30 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: This information is not yet available for 2019/20. It will become available once we release our…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Oak National Academy: Finance (30 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department made £500,000 in grant funding available to the Oak National Academy to…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Education: Registration (30 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Any education setting which provides full-time provision to 5 or more pupils of compulsory …

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Business: Gender (30 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: In recognition of the unprecedented uncertainty and pressure facing employers due to the …

Written Answers — Department for Education: National Tutoring Programme (29 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The National Tutoring Programme (NTP) was announced on 19 June as part of the £1 billion…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pupils: Attendance (29 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We are asking schools and local authorities to work with families to secure regular school …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pupils: Attendance (29 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: In the spring of 2019, a consultation was held on proposals for: a mandatory register of children …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Educational Visits (29 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Department for Education continues to advise against both overnight and non-overnight …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Coronavirus (29 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Education recovery lies at the heart of our national mission as we emerge from the disruption …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Music: Special Educational Needs (29 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Our vision for children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) is the same as…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Work Experience (29 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Supported Internships are an educational study programme and, as such, are inspected by

Written Answers — Department for Education: Sex and Relationship Education (29 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Section 34 of The Children and Social Work Act 2017 requires regulations to be made to provide…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Computers: Primary Education (29 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The computing curriculum in England was introduced in 2014 across key stages 1 to 4 to …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Printing (29 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The information requested is not held centrally by the Department.

Written Answers — Department for Education: Eleven Plus: Coronavirus (29 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We have published non-statutory guidance on assessment processes for selective school

Written Answers — Department for Education: Academies: Curriculum (29 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Both academies and maintained schools are under a duty to teach a balanced and broadly…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Educational Institutions: Coronavirus (29 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We recognise that all children and young people have had their education disrupted as a result…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Coronavirus (29 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Access to mental health support is more important than ever during the COVID-19 outbreak…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Mental Health (28 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: There are a wide range of evidence-based programmes and interventions available for schools…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Educational Institutions: Drugs (28 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department does not gather data on drug related offences on educational premises. …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Skilled Workers: Training (23 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We have been working across government to build a package of support measures to boost…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pupils: Coronavirus (23 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We recognise that ensuring there is sufficient, appropriate transport for all children to return to…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Basic Skills: Primary Education (23 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Although the year 7 catch-up premium has been discontinued, we continue to provide …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Finance (23 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Schools will continue to attract funding via the national funding formula (NFF) for pupils with …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Inspections (23 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: This is a matter for Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector, Amanda Spielman. I have asked her to write

Written Answers — Department for Education: Education and Training: Coronavirus (23 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As part of raising the participation age legislation local authorities have duties to track all …

Schools: Arts Teaching – Question (22 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the department is committed to high-quality education for all pupils during this difficult time, including in the arts and other creative subjects. We have introduced several initiatives for schools and parents, including signposting to a range of online resources, including BBC Education, the Oak National Academy and other professional organisations, such as Music Mark and the…

Written Answers — Department for Education: School Meals (22 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We expect that kitchens will be fully open from the start of the autumn term and normal legal …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Training: Private Sector (22 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government previously announced on 31 August 2019 that it will invest an extra £400 …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices: Coronavirus (22 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The information requested is not published by the department. The latest published ….

Covid-19: Childcare Sector – Question (21 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the preschool sector plays a vital role in educating our youngest children. We understand that this is a challenging time for many businesses and we will continue to ensure that early years providers get the best possible support from the Government’s support schemes. We will continue to work closely with local authorities and the early years sector organisations to monitor the…

Covid-19: Social Mobility – Question (21 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the Government are committed to levelling up opportunity across the country. The £1 billion catch-up package announced on 19 June is designed to tackle the impact of lost teaching time. Included in the package is a national tutoring programme worth £350 million to increase access to high-quality tuition for the most disadvantaged young people. This will help to accelerate their…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Sex and Relationship Education (21 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department is committed to supporting schools to deliver high quality teaching of …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Absenteeism (21 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Nothing is more important than keeping children safe and in suitable education. Local …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Arts: Education (21 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The guidance for full opening of schools published on the 2 July makes clear that all …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Coronavirus (21 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The COVID Summer Food Fund is available to provide support where needed to year 11 and year

Employment: Young People – Question (20 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, we are investing around £100 million this year in careers guidance for young people and adults. We are supporting schools during the Covid-19 pandemic to develop virtual careers activities for students, including the successful My Week of Work event. The National Careers Service offers impartial careers guidance and advice through a website, web chat and helpline, and it will…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Boarding Schools: Coronavirus (20 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Department has published guidance to support all schools as they prepare for the return of …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Training: Coronavirus (20 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We will continue to pay grant funded providers their scheduled monthly profiled payments for …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Infrastructure: Skilled Workers (20 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Employer Skills Survey 2019 gathered labour market intelligence on employer skills ….

Written Answers — Department for Education: Education: Travellers (20 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The history curriculum gives teachers and schools the freedom to use specific examples from …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Disability and Special Educational Needs: Coronavirus (17 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As part of our response to the COVID-19 outbreak we made temporary changes to the law …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Teachers: Coronavirus (16 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: State-funded schools have continued to receive their budgets for the year, as usual, regardless of

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Vocational Guidance (16 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Careers & Enterprise Company (CEC) continues to support schools and colleges to provide …

Written Answers — Department for Education: History: Curriculum (16 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department is committed to an inclusive education system which recognises and embraces …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Education: Equality (16 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: All state-funded schools in England have a duty to teach a broad and balanced curriculum that …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Coronavirus (15 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Children have been and remain at the heart of our recovery planning. Supporting children and …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Coronavirus (15 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Children have been and remain at the heart of our recovery planning. Supporting children and …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Disability and Special Educational Needs (15 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Our ambition is for every child, no matter what challenges they face, to have access to a world-…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Environment Protection: Employment (14 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We want to make the skills systems more responsive to employer skill needs both locally and …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Music: Young People (14 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: All pupils should have access to an excellent, well-rounded education, and music education is …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Music: Education (14 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government believes all pupils should have access to an excellent, well-rounded education …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Foster Care (14 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: It is vital that local authorities can find the right carers to meet the needs of vulnerable children.

Written Answers — Department for Education: Countryside: Education (14 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Maintained schools are required to teach the national curriculum as part of their wider school …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Education and Unemployment: Young People (13 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We welcome the focus that the Resolution Foundation report draws to the challenge of …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Coronavirus (13 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Members of the COVID-19 Response School Stakeholder Advisory Group are not required to…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Day Care (13 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: When state schools in a local area have closed for the summer term, children of all ages may …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices: Travellers (10 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Apprenticeships are an excellent way to access a wide range of rewarding careers and offer …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children in Care (10 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government wants every child to be in a stable, loving home that is right for them. One of …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Coronavirus (9 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Every child and young person in the country has experienced unprecedented disruption to …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Home Education: Assessments (9 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: This is a matter for Ofqual, the Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation. I have …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Vocational Education: Qualifications (9 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: It is imperative that as many students as possible receive their results this summer so they can …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Sevenoaks School (9 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department is aware of a complaint that Sevenoaks School has increased predicted grades …

Education Settings: Autumn Opening – Statement (8 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, it has been a pleasure during my tenure as Minister to speak regularly to the Boarding Schools’ Association and the Independent Schools Council. One of the things we have seen during the pandemic is a sharing of educational expertise, not only from the independent sector to the state sector but within the state sector, whether that is sharing online classes, as with the Oak…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Foster Care: Coronavirus (8 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: It is vital that local authorities can find the right carers in the right places at the right time to …

Written Answers — Department for Education: History: Curriculum (8 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department is committed to an inclusive education system which recognises and embraces …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Further Education: Coronavirus (8 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Many further education providers are already open for 16 to 19 learners on the first year of a …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Pharmacy (7 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Universities are autonomous bodies, independent from government, and they have control over…

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Coronavirus: Disease Control (7 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Government commissioned Public Health England to conduct an epidemiological review to…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Day Care (6 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: From 1 June, early years settings have been able to welcome back all children. Guidance for …

Written Answers — Department for Education: History: Curriculum (6 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department is committed to an inclusive education system which recognises and embraces …

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Gender: Equal Pay (3 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: In recognition of the unprecedented uncertainty and pressure facing employers due to the …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Nurses: Students (2 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government is extremely grateful to all students who chose to opt into a paid clinical …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Students: Coronavirus (2 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As my right hon. Friends, the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer, have both …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Free School Meals: Voucher Schemes (1 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As both my right hon. Friends, the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer, have made…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Coronavirus (1 Jul 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We want to get all children and young people back into education as soon as the scientific …

JUNE 2020

Written Answers — Department for Education: History: Curriculum (30 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department is committed to an inclusive education system which recognises and embraces …

Written Answers — Department for Education: History: Education (30 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department is committed to an inclusive education system which recognises and embraces …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Climate Change: Education (29 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: It is vital that young people are taught about climate change. For this reason, related topics are …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Education: Buildings (29 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department supports sustainability through its capital funding programmes, both to …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Higher Education: Coronavirus (29 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government recognises the importance of studying part-time and the benefits that it can …

Written Answers — Department for Education: History: Education (29 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The history curriculum gives teachers and schools the freedom and flexibility to use specific …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Home Education: Standards (29 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Our latest guidance on remote education during the COVID-19 outbreak is available here: …

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Ethnic Groups: Coronavirus (29 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: This Government is working to support all people through COVID-19, including BAME women….

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Ethnic Groups: Equality (29 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The new Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparities will examine continuing racial and ethnic

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Equality and Racial Discrimination (29 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Government is committed to tackling racism and levelling up. The Commission on Race …

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Coronavirus: Ethnic Groups (29 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: On 4 June Minister for Equalities, Kemi Badenoch MP, announced the Government’s next …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Free School Meals: Voucher Schemes (25 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Provision for free school meals is ordinarily term time only. However, owing to the COVID-19 …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices: Young People (25 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Apprenticeships will have an important role to play in creating employment opportunities, …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Computers (25 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department is providing laptops and tablets to vulnerable and disadvantaged children who …

Written Answers — Department for Education: GCE A-level: Assessments (25 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: This is a matter for Ofqual, the Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation. I have

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Temperature (25 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government’s current plans do not require that children’s temperatures be monitored …

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Community Relations: Bangladesh (25 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Race Disparity Unit is working with COVID teams across departments to engage directly …

Schools: Disadvantaged Pupils – Question (24 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, on top of £100 million to support disadvantaged children in accessing remote education, we have announced a £1 billion Covid catch-up package: £650 million will be shared across state schools, and a national tutoring programme, worth £350 million, will increase access to high-quality tuition for the most disadvantaged pupils. This one-off grant recognises that all pupils have…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Disadvantaged (24 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Due to the unprecedented nature of the COVID-19 outbreak, we know there is increased …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Education: Coronavirus (24 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: So far, we have committed over £100 million to support remote education. As plans continue …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Education: Coronavirus (24 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We will do whatever we can to ensure no child, whatever their background or location, falls …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Outdoor Education (24 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Current guidance states that schools should ‘consider which lessons or classroom activities …

Schools: Return of Students – Question (23 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the Government’s ambition is for all education settings to open fully in September. Our approach and decisions continue to be based on the best scientific and medical advice. We have been working with Public Health England and the education sector, including the unions, and have provided guidance to support the sector in opening more widely. We will keep engaging closely and…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Students (23 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We have been working closely with the Higher Education (HE) sector to monitor the likely …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Liverpool (23 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We want to get all children and young people back into education as soon as the scientific …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Primary Education: Sports (23 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government will confirm arrangements for the PE and Sport Premium in the 2020-21 …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Computers (23 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government is providing over 200,000 laptops and tablets to vulnerable and …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Coronavirus (22 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: In regard to children’s social care, the department has not removed any primary legislative …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Racial Hatred: Primary Education (22 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We want to support all young people to be happy, healthy and safe. We also want to equip them…

Written Answers — Department for Education: GCE A Level and GCSE: Assessments (22 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Ofqual conducted a public consultation from 15-29 April, seeking views on aspects of the …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices (22 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Apprenticeships will have an important role to play in creating employment opportunities, …

Written Answers — Department for Education: GCE A-level: Assessments (22 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: This is a matter for Ofqual, the Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation and I have

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Coronavirus (22 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) Statutory Framework sets the regulatory standards …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Wales (22 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Education and my hon. Friend, the Minister of …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Carers: Young People (22 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Ensuring that vulnerable children and young people, including young carers, are protected and …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pupils: Disadvantaged (22 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The closest matching available data on the attendance of vulnerable children in educational …

Schools: Online Support for Pupils – Question (18 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, we are committed to supporting schools to ensure that all pupils, particularly disadvantaged pupils, are supported for lost education since lockdown. The Government have provided a £100 million package of support to enable remote teaching, including delivering devices to vulnerable children and working with the Oak National Academy, the BBC and others to ensure strong national…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Private Education (18 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government shares the concern about the impact of prolonged school closures on …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Relationship and Sex Education (18 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We want to support all young people to be happy, healthy and safe. We also want to equip them…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Students: Plagiarism (18 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government is aware that legislation has been introduced in several countries to ban …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Coronavirus (18 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Education has not issued any temporary closure

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Coronavirus (18 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Schedule 17, paragraph 1 of the Coronavirus Act 2020 gives the Secretary of State a power to …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Brexit and Coronavirus (18 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The UK is a world-leading destination for study. According to the QS World Rankings, the UK …

Covid-19 Summer Food Fund – Private Notice Question (17 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the Government remain committed to ensuring that the most disadvantaged children continue to be supported. We know that, due to coronavirus, there is increased pressure on household budgets, and we recognise that families will face particular challenges over the coming months. That is why we are providing additional funding for a Covid summer food fund, which will enable children…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pupils: ICT (17 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government is providing laptops and tablets to vulnerable and disadvantaged children who…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Languages: GCSE (17 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Department does not hold information about candidates who entered for a language GCSE

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Students (17 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We expect universities to be open for the autumn term and for them to offer a blend of online …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Home Education: Coronavirus (17 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Our latest guidance on remote education during COVID-19 is available here: …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Holiday Play Schemes (17 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government’s overriding priority remains keeping the public safe. Any steps taken as part …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Students: EU Nationals (17 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We recognise how important it is that higher education students and institutions have …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Coronavirus (17 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: To help schools manage wider opening we have published guidance for schools including how …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Social Services (17 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: This phrase is part of a wider description of vulnerable children and young people for the …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Students: Computers (16 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department is providing laptops and tablets to vulnerable and disadvantaged children who …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Outdoor Education: Coroanvirus (16 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government’s overriding priority remains keeping the public safe. Any steps taken as part …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Wales (16 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Education and hon. Friend, the Minister of …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Disadvantaged (16 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government shares the concern about the impact of prolonged school closures on all pupils…

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Coronavirus: Ethnic Groups (16 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Minister for Equalities is working with the Race Disparity Unit and the Department for …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Social Services (15 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The urgent local and national response to COVID-19 has delayed launching the Care Review. The

Written Answers — Department for Education: Disability and Special Educational Needs: Coronavirus (15 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government is committed to supporting local authorities and their partners to ensure …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pupils: Eating Disorders (15 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: When carrying out duties to safeguard children and young people, schools must have due …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Free School Meals: Voucher Schemes (15 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The vouchers for free school meals can currently be spent in a variety of supermarkets. Initially…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Coronavirus (15 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The safety of vulnerable children remains paramount for the government during the COVID-19 …

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Gender: Equality (15 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My officials regularly meet with the women’s sector and continue to do so. In the present

Written Answers — Department for Education: Higher Education: Coronavirus (12 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department engages regularly with representative bodies covering all types of higher …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Private Education: Regulation (12 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department intends to reopen the consultation on ‘Regulating independent educational …

Education Settings: Wider Opening – Statement (11 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the flexibility is to respect the professionals on the ground. Unfortunately, because of the specific risks that secondary pupils travel greater distances to school, often use public transport and usually have a wider range of social contacts, we have not been able to have the numbers back in a secondary setting. We are grateful to the independent sector. The guidance is that…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Admissions (11 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Education, and hon. Friend, the Minister of …

Free School Meal Vouchers Scheme – Question (10 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the Government remain committed to ensuring that the most disadvantaged children continue to be supported while schools remain closed. The free school meal vouchers system has seen more than £139 million-worth of voucher codes redeemed into supermarket vouchers by families and schools as of Monday. This provision is ordinarily about providing healthy meals for children in school….

Written Answers — Department for Education: Private Education: Regulation (10 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: It is an important principle that consultations take account of the groups being consulted and …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pupils: Coronavirus (9 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Ofsted continues to investigate potential illegal schools including consideration of new

Public Health England Review: Covid-19 Disparities – Commons Urgent Question (8 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, it is important that we understand the various drivers of the disparities and the relationship between different risk factors. It has been accepted that the report has some limitations; for example, the ethnicity analysis does not adjust for factors such as comorbidities such as underlying health conditions of hypertension and obesity. It is imperative that we do the next stage of…

Covid-19: Pre-school Sector – Question (8 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the pre-school sector plays a vital role in educating our youngest children. As with all parts of society, the pandemic has greatly affected the sector, limiting the number of children able to attend. Since 1 June, we have asked the sector to welcome back all children. We are working with local authorities and the sector to monitor the impact of the pandemic. Government will…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Teachers: Coronavirus (8 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department’s guidance on implementing protective measures explains who should and …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Special Educational Needs: Coronavirus (5 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: There are no plans to assess the special educational needs categorisation of children classed as …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Physical Education (5 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We want to get all children and young people back into education as soon as possible because it…

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Gender Recognition: Discrimination (5 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Equality Act 2010 includes a clear legal definition of transgender discrimination. Under …

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Gender Recognition (5 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As part of our engagement on the Gender Recognition Act 2004 (GRA), single-sex and …

Covid-19: Educational Gaps – Question (4 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, we will do whatever we can to ensure that no child, whatever their background or location, falls behind as a result of coronavirus. We have so far committed over £100 million to boost remote learning. We are working at pace with experts to understand and address the immediate and long-term impacts of school closures. This includes considering a targeted online tutoring offer and…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Erasmus+ Programme: Coronavirus (4 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government remains open to participation in some elements of the next Erasmus+ …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Sex and Relationship Education (4 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We want to support all young people to be happy, healthy and safe. We also want to equip…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Students: Coronavirus (4 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Our latest guidance on isolation for residential educational settings is available here: …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Philosophy and Religion (4 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We are making Relationships Education compulsory for primary school-aged pupils, …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Coronavirus: Older People (4 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As a result of the huge efforts everyone has made to adhere to strict social distancing …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Coronavirus (4 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As a result of the huge efforts everyone has made to adhere to strict social distancing measures…

Covid-19: Schools – Question (3 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the coronavirus outbreak has caused disruption to young people’s education, as teachers and parents have had to adapt to remote education. We are working at pace with partners to look at what additional measures may be required to ensure that every child has the support they need to deal with the impact of coronavirus on their education. We will do whatever we can to make sure…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Coronavirus (3 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department’s approach to facilitating the safe return of all students at the start of the new …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Coronavirus (3 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: From the week commencing 1 June 2020, we have asked primary schools to welcome back ..

Written Answers — Department for Education: Free School Meals: Voucher Schemes (3 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: During this period of partial school closures, we are asking schools to support children who are …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Foster Care: Standards (3 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: In 2019, we conducted 2 digital discovery phases to better understand the problems …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Adoption (3 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Finding stable and loving permanent homes for vulnerable children is a priority for this …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Coronavirus (3 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department has asked primary schools to welcome back children in nursery, Reception,…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Coronavirus: Schools (3 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Children’s Task and Finish Working Group, established by the Scientific Advisory Group …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices: Standards (3 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The table attached shows the list of apprenticeship standards that have had fewer than 10 …

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Hospitals: Gender (3 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government is committed to maintaining protections for single-sex services. Hospitals are …

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Government Departments: Equality (3 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Equality Act 2010, which applies to all employers and providers of services and functions …

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Public Sector: Gender Recognition (3 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: This information is not collected centrally, but we are not aware of any case of this sort.

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children’s Commissioner for England: Public Appointments (2 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The primary function of the Children’s Commissioner for England is promoting and protecting …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Breakfast Clubs (2 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As both my right hon. Friends, the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer, have made…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Academic Year (2 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: There are no plans to open schools during the summer holidays. The department understands …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Higher Education: Finance (2 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: In light of COVID-19, we have carefully assessed the challenges the sector is facing and brought ..

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Civil Partnerships (2 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: At present, only civil partnerships or marriages conducted under the special procedure, for …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Home Education (1 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We are constantly reviewing the needs of the most vulnerable and disadvantaged children to …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Ethnic Groups: Coronavirus (1 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We have developed plans to open schools to more children and young people in line with our …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Education: Coronavirus (1 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: On 12 May, the department published comprehensive guidance to schools which included …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Teachers: Coronavirus (1 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department does not have any plans to impose sanctions on individual teachers regarding …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Coronavirus (1 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government is committed to publishing the scientific evidence that has informed SAGE’s :…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children’s Commissioner for England: Public Appointments (1 Jun 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Children Act 2004 states that the Children’s Commissioner is to be appointed by the …

MAY 2020

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Coronavirus (29 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We know that, unlike older children and adults, early years and primary age children cannot be…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Coronavirus (29 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We recognise that outdoor education can be beneficial for the health and wellbeing of children…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Coronavirus (29 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Government recognises that this is an extremely challenging time for staff in school and care

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Coronavirus (29 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Children, young people and teachers’ safety is our top priority. This is why we are taking a phased

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Coronavirus (29 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We want to get children and young people back into education as soon as the scientific advice…

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Gender: Coronavirus (29 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Office for National Statistics and Public Health England are government-funded bodies that..

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Theme Parks: Disability (29 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Equality Act 2010 (the Act) requires service providers to make reasonable adjustments to…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Further Education: Finance and Governing Bodies (28 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Education recently set out (to the Education…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Gender Recognition (28 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: All children and young people must be kept safe. All schools must continue to have regard to…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Sex and Relationship Education (28 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We want to support all young people to be happy, healthy and safe. We also want to equip them…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Free School Meals: Voucher Schemes (27 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As both my right hon. Friends the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer have made…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Free School Meals: Voucher Schemes (27 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As my right hon. Friends the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer have both made…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Free School Meals: Voucher Schemes (27 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As my right hon. Friends the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer have both made…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Academies (27 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: In May 2020, there are 2,675 secondary academies, free schools, studio schools and university…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Polytechnics (27 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We currently have no plans to introduce legislation to convert some universities back to polytechnics.

Written Answers — Department for Education: Free Schools: Coronavirus (27 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We are monitoring closely the risk that construction delays caused by COVID-19 might impact on

Written Answers — Department for Education: Free School Meals: Voucher Schemes (26 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As both my right hon. Friends the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer have made…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Free School Meals: Voucher Schemes (26 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As both my right hon. Friends, the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer, have made…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Coronavirus (26 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Ensuring that vulnerable children remain safe and protected is our top priority. For children who

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Disadvantaged (26 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department defines disadvantaged pupils as those who are recorded as claiming free school…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Regional Schools Commissioners: Coronavirus (26 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The majority of schools have remained open during the COVID-19 pandemic for vulnerable…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Home Education (22 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: On its website, the National Education Union has highlighted the importance of any school which

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Coronavirus (21 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As my right hon. Friends, the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer have both made…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices: Finance (21 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: In 2020-21, funding available for investment in apprenticeships in England will remain around…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Supermarkets: Coronavirus (21 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Our latest guidance on providing free school meals is available at the following link:

Written Answers — Department for Education: Eleven Plus: Coronavirus (21 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Arrangements for selecting pupils by ability are for the admission authorities for selective schools

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Equal Pay (21 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We recognise that employers are facing unprecedented uncertainty and pressure due to the…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Higher Education: Coronavirus (20 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: In 2018-19, there were 2.38 million students studying at UK higher education providers. This…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Coronavirus (20 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Our latest guidance on vulnerable children is available here: …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Finance (20 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: In the 2018/19 academic year, tuition fees from international students at UK higher education …

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Coronavirus (20 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department will do whatever it can to make sure no child, whatever their background or…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Students: Coronavirus (20 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: On Monday 4 May, my right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Education, announced a…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices: Coronavirus (20 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As both my right hon. Friends, the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer have made…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices: Coronavirus (20 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Apprenticeships will play an important role in supporting economic recovery. They provide…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices: Coronavirus (20 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We have introduced flexibilities to make it easier for apprentices of all ages to continue to benefit..

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices: Coronavirus (20 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Our ambition remains for any apprentice facing redundancy to be supported to find alternative…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Coronavirus (20 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Office for Students (OfS) has made it clear that all higher education providers must continue…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Education: Internet (20 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department is committed to ensuring that children can continue to learn at home in these…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Higher Education: Registration (20 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The registration process for higher education providers is managed by the Office for Students…

Written Answers — Department for Education: GCSE and GCE A-level: Assessments (20 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We acknowledge the COVID-19 outbreak has caused stress and uncertainty for pupils and…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Staff (20 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As both my right hon. Friends, the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer have made…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Higher Education: Standards (20 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government continues to work with the higher education (HE) sector to make sure that all…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme: Nurseries (20 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government has announced unprecedented support for businesses, including the early years…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Disadvantaged (20 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Schools will continue to receive their budgets for the coming year as usual, regardless of any…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Students: Housing (19 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As both my right hon. Friends, the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer have made…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Students: Housing (19 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As my right hon. Friends, the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer have both made…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Foreign Students: Coronavirus (19 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We have been working closely with the higher education sector to ensure that it provides the…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: ICT (19 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Government has committed over £100 million to support remote education, including by…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices: Coronavirus (18 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We have introduced flexibilities to make it easier for apprentices of all ages to continue to benefit

Written Answers — Department for Education: Students: Grants (15 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As both my right hon. Friends the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer have made

Written Answers — Department for Education: Foreign Students: Coronavirus (15 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government is applying discretion under current circumstances to ensure that international

Written Answers — Department for Education: Assessments: Languages (15 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: This is a matter for the Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (Ofqual) and I have

Written Answers — Department for Education: GCSE: Coronavirus (15 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We are working with the independent qualifications regulator, Ofqual, and the exam boards to

Written Answers — Department for Education: Assessments: Coronavirus (15 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department recognises that schools and colleges want clarity on exam fees following the

Written Answers — Department for Education: Educational Institutions (15 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As a result of the huge efforts everyone has made to adhere to strict social distancing measures,

Covid-19: Schools – Statement (14 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, it has always been made clear that the decision to reopen schools on 1 June is contingent on five tests being satisfied, including a decrease in transmission of the disease, and that once schools reopen there is a hierarchy of controls for them to put in place to lower the rate of transmission of the disease. It has been made clear by the Prime Minister and the Secretary of State…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Protection (14 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We have taken a number of steps to ensure the safety of vulnerable children during the COVID-

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Coronavirus (14 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government recognises that the COVID-19 pandemic is bringing very significant financial

Written Answers — Department for Education: Special Educational Needs (13 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: 69,000 of the children and young people in attendance on Thursday 7 May were classed by

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Coronavirus (13 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We have no current plans in place to review the long-term educational benefits of material

Written Answers — Department for Education: Remote Working: Coronavirus (13 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government has advised everyone to work from home if possible. Guidance on staying at

Written Answers — Department for Education: Supported Housing: Coronavirus (13 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government is committed to ensuring that vulnerable children and young people remain

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Staff (13 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The school workforce is central to the country’s response to COVID-19 and we thank them

Written Answers — Department for Education: Special Educational Needs (13 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: In February and March 2020, we delivered training on Annual Reviews of Education Health and

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Coronavirus (13 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As both my right hon. Friends, the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer have made

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Finance (13 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As my right hon. Friends the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer have made clear,

Schools: Relationships and Sex Education – Question (12 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the Government have worked extensively with schools, teachers and experts throughout the development of these subjects. This has included working with over 1,500 early adopter schools to support their journey, learn lessons and share good practice. The department also conducted an impact assessment as part of the consultation. We are committed to supporting teachers, which is why we…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Coronavirus (12 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government has announced a UK-wide range of support, including the Coronavirus Job

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Coronavirus (12 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Universities offering high quality tuition online will continue to charge fees. Fee loans are being

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Coronavirus (12 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As my right hon. Friends the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer have both made

Written Answers — Department for Education: Free School Meals (12 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Alongside our national approach to supporting pupils to continue to access free school meals, we

Written Answers — Department for Education: Supply Teachers: Employment Agencies (12 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department’s latest school workforce guidance on COVID-19, including financial support

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices: Coronavirus (12 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS), all UK employers with a PAYE scheme

Written Answers — Department for Education: Special Educational Needs: Coronavirus (7 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We have published guidance on supporting vulnerable children and young people at this time:

Written Answers — Department for Education: Disabled Students’ Allowances (7 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Specific Learning Difficulty (SpLD) Assessment Standards Committee (SASC) published

Written Answers — Department for Education: Students: Broadband and Computers (7 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government will provide devices for the most disadvantaged children who would otherwise…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Teachers: Coronavirus (7 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The school workforce is central to the country’s response to COVID-19 and we thank them…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Coronavirus (7 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government has announced a UK-wide range of support, including the Coronavirus Job…

Higher Education – Private Notice Question (6 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, all registered providers must comply with the Office for Students’ conditions for quality and access. We are protecting the interests of students by stabilising the admissions system, bringing forward £2.6 billion of forecast tuition fee income to help universities’ cash flow, and providing students with more support. This includes help for universities to reprioritise spending…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Coronavirus (6 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: On Monday 21 April, national data on pupil attendance in educational establishments between

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pupils: Coronavirus (6 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Schools across the country are already lending school-owned devices to children who need them..

Written Answers — Department for Education: Special Educational Needs: Charities (6 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As both my right hon. Friends the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer have made…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pupils: Broadband and Computers (6 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Devices have been ordered for the most disadvantaged children who would otherwise not have….

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Coronavirus (6 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department recognises these public services are vitally important in such a challenging time…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Coronavirus (6 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The UK looks forward to continuing to welcome international and EU students in the future.

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pupil Exclusions: Coronavirus (6 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: As both my right hon. Friends, the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer, have made clear, the government will do whatever it takes to support people affected by COVID-19…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Coronavirus (6 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Schools will remain closed until further notice, except for children of critical workers and…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Further Education: Students (6 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, most students are not able to attend education at present and…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Higher Education: Coronavirus (6 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Despite the significant disruption being felt across the higher education sector, students deserve

Written Answers — Department for Education: Industry: White Papers (5 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We have supported further education (FE) colleges through the Restructuring Facility, investing

Written Answers — Department for Education: Higher Education: Foreign Students (5 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government has been working closely with the sector to ensure that international higher…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Carers: Coronavirus (5 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Local authorities have a general duty to safeguard and promote the welfare of children in need…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Free School Meals: Coronavirus (5 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Free school meal vouchers can currently be spent in a variety of supermarkets. Initially, the…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Relationship and Sex Education (5 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We want to support all young people to be happy, healthy and safe. We also want to equip them…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Protective Clothing (5 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We have no plans to request students studying design and technology to produce personal protective equipment.

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Equal Pay (5 May 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Pay gaps are caused by a range of factors. To address them, we must ensure that everybody has…

APRIL 2020

Children in Care – Private Notice Question (30 Apr 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the interests of vulnerable children are this Government’s top priority. The recent changes to secondary legislation are intended to help children’s social care to respond to this unprecedented situation. We have not changed the overarching responsibilities for the protection of vulnerable children. The measures, which are to be used only when absolutely necessary, will help to…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pre-school Education: Coronavirus (28 Apr 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Our immediate objective is to ensure that critical workers have the childcare that they need to do

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Standards (9 Apr 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department has no plans to carry out a formal review of the use of school performance tables…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices: Coronavirus (8 Apr 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We understand that apprentices, including those undertaking higher level and degree apprenticeships…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices: Coronavirus (8 Apr 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We are working with training providers, end-point assessment organisations and external…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices: Recruitment (8 Apr 2020)

Baroness Berridge: This is a difficult time for apprentices, employers and providers of apprenticeship training…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Education: Coronavirus (8 Apr 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Since Friday 20 March, schools have been closed except for children of critical workers and…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Christ Church College: Criminal Investigation (8 Apr 2020)

Baroness Berridge: There have been no discussions. Registered higher education (HE) providers’ governance…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Coronavirus (8 Apr 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Supporting vulnerable children is a priority at this time. That is why, on Wednesday 18 March…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Coronavirus (8 Apr 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We are committed to ensuring the safety and protection of vulnerable children and young people

Written Answers — Department for Education: Students: Food (7 Apr 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government is grateful for the huge amount of work being done across the higher education

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices: Coronavirus (7 Apr 2020)

Baroness Berridge: This is a matter for the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pupil Referral Units: Coronavirus (7 Apr 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government has asked providers of alternative provision (AP), including pupil referral units

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Coronavirus (7 Apr 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The duties under the Equality Act 2010 on local authorities, schools and other education settings

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Gender: Equality (7 Apr 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Integrated Review will not be limited to specific departments, objectives or time frames but…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children in Care: Female Genital Mutilation (6 Apr 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Female genital mutilation (FGM) has been illegal in the UK since the Female Circumcision Act…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Female Genital Mutilation: Education (6 Apr 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) is child abuse and it is illegal. Services, including schools…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Teachers: Coronavirus (2 Apr 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department anticipates that teachers who are no longer required to be physically present in

Written Answers — Department for Education: Female Genital Mutilation: Education (1 Apr 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) is child abuse and it is illegal. Services, including schools…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pupils: Exercise (1 Apr 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government published its ‘School sport and activity action plan’ in July 2019. It set out…

MARCH 2020

Written Answers — Department for Education: Public Appointments: Ethnic Groups (31 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Department for Education has 136 publicly appointed members of public bodies, 17 of…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Families (31 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Department for Education will administer the £2.5 million for research and developing…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Educational Institutions: Coronavirus (31 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: On 18 March, the Government announced that after schools shut their gates on 20 March…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Free Schools: Special Educational Needs (30 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: 4 of the 48 special free schools in the pipeline have funding agreements in place and are due to…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Special Educational Needs (30 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Information published in November 2019 by the Local Government Association in…

Written Answers — Department for Education: National Skills Fund (30 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Over the course of this Parliament, the government will provide an extra £2.5 billion (£3 billion…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Special Educational Needs (27 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: In January 2019, there were 125,410 pupils in 1,044 state-funded and non-maintained special…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Antisemitism (25 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: There is no place in our society – including within higher education (HE) – for hatred or any…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Female Genital Mutilation (25 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: This information is not held centrally. Data on children being taken into care does not identify…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pupils: Absenteeism (25 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The information requested is not held centrally as the Department only collects data on pupils…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children in Care: Travellers (25 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Working Together to Safeguard Children is clear that local areas should have a comprehensive…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pupils: Travellers (25 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We welcome the report by the Traveller Movement, along with their contribution through the…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pupils: Gender Recognition (24 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department strongly believes that that all children should be supported whilst growing up…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Skilled Workers: Vacancies (24 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Employer Skills Survey 2017 identified 1,007,000 vacancies, of which 226,000 were…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Family Drug and Alcohol Court (24 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: There have been no ministerial visits made to Family Drug and Alcohol Court (FDAC) teams in…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Family Drug and Alcohol Court (24 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We are investing approximately £17 million in the Supporting Families: Investing in Practice…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Freedom of Expression (24 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government does not support no-platforming of individuals or organisations…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Mandarin Language: Education (24 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government believes that learning other languages is important in our globalised economy…

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Gender Recognition (24 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: A Gender Recognition Certificate is a private, legal document which a person would not usually…

BAME Students: Pupil Referral Units – Question (23 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, 27% of pupils in PRUs, alternative provision academies and AP free schools are BAME, compared with 32% in all schools. There is variation among different groups, however, and it is important that we seek to understand those differences. We are committed to improving outcomes for all pupils in alternative provision and will build on the good practice identified by our £4 million AP…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Woodworking: Apprentices (23 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We have introduced a wide range of reforms to improve the quality of apprenticeships and to…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Adult Education (23 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Our adult skills system seeks to increase productivity, support employment and promote social…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Training (23 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government recognises that there are a number of international examples, including in…

Written Answers — Department for Education: School of Oriental and African Studies: EuroPal Forum (23 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: This government has committed to strengthen academic freedom and free speech in universities..

Written Answers — Department for Education: Students: Plagiarism (23 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Contract cheating and the use of essay mills are global problems. A 2018 study by Swansea…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Students: Plagiarism (23 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The use of fake qualifications or plagiarised assignments is unacceptable. It not only threatens…

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Veganism (23 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Further to the answer I gave to PQ HL2142, the Government currently has no plans to issue…

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Gender (23 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: In the Equality Act 2010, “man” is defined as “a male of any age”; and “woman” as “a female…

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Gender: Equality (23 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: All public bodies in Great Britain, including Whitehall departments, have a legal obligation…

Educational Settings – Statement (19 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, with the leave of the House, I shall now repeat a Statement made yesterday in the other place by my right honourable friend the Secretary of State for Education. The Statement is as follows: “With permission, Mr Speaker, I would like to make a Statement regarding changes to the operations of educational settings as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. We are facing increasingly…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Social Services (19 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government is clear that the needs of the child are paramount when making decisions…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Training (19 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government is taking steps to improve productivity, employment levels and social inclusion..

Written Answers — Department for Education: Higher Education: Admissions (19 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Everyone with the talent and capability to succeed in higher education should have the…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Further Education: Mergers (19 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Further education (FE) colleges can sometimes benefit from structural change to strengthen…

Higher and Further Education: Rural and Coastal Areas – Question (18 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, we want everyone to benefit from a fair chance, and no part of the country should be left behind. Anyone with the potential to succeed should have the opportunity to benefit from high-quality university education, regardless of their age, background or, importantly, the part of the country they grew up in. We plan to expand technical and vocational provision at higher levels…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Skilled Workers (18 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: In February the department published labour market projections for the period to 2027. The…

Children: Special Educational Needs – Question (17 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the Government are committed to carrying out a SEND review. The 2014 reforms gave vital support to more children, but we know that for too many children and parents the vision has yet to become a reality. We all want a system of support for those with special educational needs and disability which is consistent, high quality and integrated across education, health and care. We…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Free School Meals (17 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Schools pay for benefits-related free school meals from their core funding. The department…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Social Services (17 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: In a Written Ministerial Statement on 12 February, my right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Woodworking: Apprentices (17 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: This is a matter for the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education. I have asked its…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Woodworking: Apprentices (17 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: New high-quality apprenticeships standards, designed and driven by industry, are providing…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Woodworking: Apprentices (17 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The apprenticeship levy is collected by Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs from all UK…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Woodworking: Further Education (17 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government approves a number of qualifications for funding, across a range of subjects…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Sanitation (17 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department publishes advice to support schools in England to meet the standards set out…

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Veganism (17 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: A series of tribunal readings since 2010 mean that protected philosophical beliefs under the…

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: Gender Recognition: Equality (17 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Those seeking to rely on the protections and exemptions contained in the Equality Act 2020…

Innovation Economy: Skills – Question (16 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the Government want the UK to be a science and research and development superpower, increasing our research and development spending to 2.4% of GDP by 2027. The Government are constantly assessing the skills required to deliver this ambition. We are prioritising STEM, digital and technical education; creating a new £3 billion skills fund; and reforming the global talent visa so…

Innovation Economy: Skills – Question (16 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, as part of our ongoing commitment to arts in schools, we are continuing funding of about £85 million a year for a range of music and cultural education programmes. Cognitive science shows that a knowledge-based curriculum is then the foundation for stimulating the critical thinking and creativity that we need. That is why the focus of our curriculum is on getting that bed of…

Innovation Economy: Skills – Question (16 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: I am grateful to the noble Baroness for raising the role of FE, which often does not get mentioned in this space. Yes, £400 million has been invested into the estate, and I think that more money was announced in the Budget. There has not been a specific fund to skill up the FE workforce as well, but one initiative that the Government have embarked on are the new institutes of technology, 12…

Innovation Economy: Skills – Question (16 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: I am grateful to the noble Lord; I expected that this Question would highlight the role of the creative and arts sector. There has been a specific initiative in the apprenticeship space, which I have mentioned before in your Lordships’ House, because of the difficulties of a 12-month apprenticeship when we have an industry sector that has a lot of sole traders. We have therefore devised the…

Innovation Economy: Skills – Question (16 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, it is essential that this is both a local and a national approach by the Government. A national skills and productivity board has been announced and is in development, made up of experts sitting at a national level. There are now 36 skills and advisory panels—similar name but different function—at local level, which include the FE sector and employers, so that at local level we…

Innovation Economy: Skills – Question (16 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the Government are committed to all those sectors with a skills gap: there is design, the automotive sector and engineering. What I just outlined at local and national level is to ensure what is being developed in qualifications and skills. That is why employers are involved in ensuring that apprenticeships match the needs of the economy.

Innovation Economy: Skills – Question (16 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Yes, SMEs are a huge part of our economy. Along with the FE sector, the biggest single contribution the Government make to research and development for businesses is what is called the R&D tax credit. In the latest figures that I have, £4.3 billion was paid to businesses for that tax credit for their R&D spend, but £2.3 billion of that was to small and medium-sized enterprises, so this is…

Innovation Economy: Skills – Question (16 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, through the education sector, that is part of what is taught in our schools—there is the environmental science A-level—but in terms of what the Government seek to deliver, it is part of our priority to develop the industries we need to deliver that commitment.

Innovation Economy: Skills – Question (16 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the Government are investing in the Careers & Enterprise Company, there is a careers strategy nationally in schools and it is part of the Ofsted framework, but we leave it to teachers to determine who they should invite in through our various initiatives. I am sure that that is one that many schools would want to invite participants into.

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children in Care (16 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government is committed to ensuring that all children taken into care have the best possible chances in life. We have given looked after children top priority in school admissions to ensure they have access to the very best schools and their education is supported through the expertise and leadership of local authority Virtual School Heads (VSHs). VSHs are directly accountable for the…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Health Professions: Training (16 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: No representations have been made to Her Majesty’s Government in relation to the proposal by the Office for Students (OfS) to make savings to teaching grant funding, including for some pre-registration clinical courses. The OfS consulted on their proposals, which include a proposal to make additional budget provision for providers in a small number of high-cost and high-priority areas, to…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Special Educational Needs: Finance (16 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: For a child with an education, health and care (EHC) plan, the local authority is responsible for securing the provision specified in that plan, including making arrangements for the child to attend any school named in the plan. A local authority is required to provide each mainstream (primary or secondary) school in its area with a budget that is sufficient for it to meet the additional…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Free School Meals (16 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Department for Education publishes figures for the number of pupils taking a free school meal on the day of the January census in schools in England. The figures from 2014/15 to 2018/19 are shown in the table below. All infant pupils are eligible for free school meals (FSM) under the Universal Infant Free School Meals (UIFSM) policy. Meals delivered under the universal eligibility are…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pupils: Gender (16 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: From September 2020, it will be compulsory for all primary schools to teach relationships education and for all secondary schools to teach relationships and sex education. Health education will be compulsory in all state-funded schools. These subjects directly support the government’s ambitions to end discrimination against women and girls. Pupils will be taught about stereotypes,…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Primary Education: Free School Meals (16 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: ​A key success measure for Universal Infant Free School Meals is take-up of the meal, which has been consistently strong. We monitor this through the schools census. 1.4 million infants receive a free meal through this programme which is a take-up rate of 87%.

Written Answers — Department for Education: Schools: Transport (16 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department has not carried out research into the impact of transport infrastructure on the results of secondary school students. We recognise the complex relationships and connections between the strength of an area’s infrastructure and the performance of public services. This government is committed to levelling up across the country. Driving up educational standards are central to our…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Special Educational Needs (13 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The annual review process for Education, Health and Care (EHC) plans, set out in the Children and Families Act 2014 and the special educational needs and disability (SEND) Code of Practice, requires local authorities to ensure reviews are conducted within twelve months from the final EHC plan being in place, or within 12 months of the last review of the plan. The department has sought to…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Languages: Primary Education (13 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The requested information is not held by the department. The School Workforce Census is the department’s main source of information on teacher and support staff numbers and the subjects taught by teachers. However, this census does not collect information on the subjects taught by primary school teaching staff or support staff. The reformed National Curriculum in England makes it compulsory…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Woodworking: Training (13 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Over the course of this parliament, the government will provide an extra £3 billion for a new National Skills Fund. The Fund is part of a dramatic rebooting of our skills system and will help workers to have the skills they need to flourish and fulfil their potential. To decide how best to develop the National Skills Fund, the government are planning to consult widely on the Fund, to ensure…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Out-of-school Education: Islam (12 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Madrasas are generally considered to be out-of-school settings and, as indicated in the answer provided by my predecessor, the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for the School System, on 13 February 2020, out-of-school settings are not captured by a single dedicated regulatory framework. Therefore, they are not subject to assessment regarding their teachings by the department or Ofsted….

Written Answers — Department for Education: Erasmus+ Programme (12 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The UK’s approach to negotiations with the European Union, as set out in the ‘Future Relationship with the European Union’, is clear that we remain open to participation in elements of Erasmus+, on a time-limited basis, provided the terms are in the UK’s interests.

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices (12 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Increasing the number of apprenticeships further is a priority, and we are actively considering how to do so. We have introduced a wide range of reforms to improve the quality of apprenticeships and to encourage employers across England to create more high-quality apprenticeship opportunities for people of all ages and backgrounds. In 2019-20, the funding available for investment in…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices: Taxation (12 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We continue to engage closely with businesses and listen to their views about the apprenticeships programme and the operation of the apprenticeship levy. We are committed to making sure the apprenticeship programme continues to provide opportunities for people of all backgrounds, while meeting the needs of employers of all sizes and delivering benefits for the economy.

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices (12 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We have introduced a wide range of reforms to improve the quality of apprenticeships and to encourage employers across England to create more high-quality apprenticeship opportunities for people of all ages and backgrounds. Our reforms have made apprenticeships longer and more rigorous, with more off-the-job training and with an independent assessment at the end. We recognise that some…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Training (12 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We are working with employers to jointly design and deliver policies and programmes which will develop the skills that individuals of all ages need to be successful and that employers want. These include apprenticeships, with our reforms benefiting people of all ages and backgrounds, including adults developing their skills. This also includes Adult Education Budget (AEB) funded provision….

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices (12 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department does not collect this information directly. According to the 2017 apprenticeship evaluation learner survey, 56% of all level 2 and 3 apprentices were recruited specifically with the intention of completing an apprenticeship. Just over two-fifths of level 2 and 3 apprenticeships (42%) were undertaken by those in existing roles already working for their employer.

Apprenticeships: Gender Segregation – Question (11 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, we are committed to ensuring that apprenticeships in all sectors and at all levels are accessible to anybody with passion and drive. Overall, there is a good gender balance in apprenticeships, but we want to ensure that more women access apprenticeships in traditionally male-dominated fields and benefit from those that offer the highest returns. Our Apprenticeship Diversity…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Families: Disadvantaged (11 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: the government is providing councils with an additional £1 billion for adult and children’s social care in every year of this parliament. This is on top of the continuation of the £410 million social care grant next year. Funding for children’s social care is not ringfenced, allowing councils to spend based on local need and priorities, including on family support and preventative…

Written Answers — Department for Education: National Retraining Scheme (11 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government has initiated rolling out the first part of the National Retraining Scheme, Get Help to Retrain. This service helps users to understand their current skills, explore alternative occupations that they could do and find and sign up to the training they need to access opportunities for a broad range of good jobs. Since the start of the roll out of Get Help to Retrain in the…

Written Answers — Department for Education: National Retraining Scheme (11 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government has started to roll out the first part of the National Retraining Scheme, Get Help to Retrain, in 6 areas across England. Get Help to Retrain is a digital service that will help users to understand their current skills, explore alternative occupations that they could do and find and sign up to the training they need to access opportunities for a broad range of good jobs. Since…

Written Answers — Women and Equalities: International Women’s Day (11 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: International Women’s Day is an excellent opportunity to celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women in the UK and across the globe. As you are aware, the UK Parliament has held debates in both Houses to mark this important event. The House of Commons debate was led by the Minister for Women and Equalities, Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss MP, who delivered the…

International Women’s Day – Motion to Take Note (10 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, it is an honour to begin my role as Minister for Women with a debate on International Women’s Day, which I am sure many of us marked in different ways on Sunday. I am also pleased that my noble friend Lord Ranger, of Mayfair, will make his maiden speech in this debate, as male voices are so important to this debate. I congratulate him and welcome him to his place in your…

Education: Gender Equality – Question (10 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, we want a society where choices and success are not limited by expectations and perceptions about gender. There is already scope within the school curriculum to teach gender equality through literature, history and citizenship. Schools can also organise activities outside the curriculum, such as inviting guest speakers. It was an honour to be invited to Eden Girls’ School in…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Children in Care: Human Trafficking (10 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Information on the number of looked after children who have been identified as potential victims of human trafficking and who go missing from care is not held centrally. The latest figures on looked after children who go missing in England as at 31 March are published in Table G1 of the statistical release ‘Children Looked after in England including adoptions: 2018 to 2019’, which is…

Written Answers — Department for Education: History: Education (10 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The history curriculum gives teachers and schools the freedom and flexibility to use specific examples from history to teach pupils about the history of Britain and the wider world. There are opportunities within the themes and eras of the history curriculum for teachers and schools to teach about the history of the Commonwealth at Key Stages 1-3. Schools can teach about the Commonwealth at…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Training (10 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The National Retraining Scheme will support working adults to prepare for future changes to the economy, including changes brought about by automation, and help them to retrain into better jobs. In addition to the National Retraining Scheme, our wider adult skills system seeks to improve productivity, employment levels and social inclusion. Programmes including apprenticeships, funded or…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Higher Education: Greater Manchester (9 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The department publishes annual information on the proportion of students from state-funded and special schools who entered higher education by age 19 by local authority in its ‘Widening Participation in Higher Education’ statistical release. The table below shows figures for the latest five years for local authorities within Greater Manchester. Table 1: Percentage of pupils from…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Special Educational Needs (9 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The government is committed to carrying out the SEND review, first announced on 6 September 2019. In announcing that we are reviewing the system of support for children with special educational needs and disabilties, we acknowledged the challenges the system faces. We are committed to setting out plans to tackle these issues and build on our 2014 reforms which gave vital support to more…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Pre-school Education (9 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The early years foundation stage framework is mandatory for all early years providers in England. It sets out the staffing requirements for early years settings, including ratios and qualifications. While the department does not require graduates to be employed in private, voluntary and independent early years settings, we are committed to ensuring that there are routes to graduate-level…

Written Answers — Department for Education: T-levels (9 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Given the scale of the challenge, it is important that employers from all industries and regions are supported to deliver industry placements. We have carried out extensive stakeholder engagement across different industries, considered a range of evidence and put a substantial support package in place. The published evidence is on pages 10 to 12 in the following link (which is also attached):…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Teachers (9 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The number of teachers remains high, with over 453,000 teachers in our schools – 12,000 more than in 2010. Postgraduate recruitment to teacher training is at its highest level since 2010-11, with over 29,000 postgraduate trainees recruited in 2019-20. The department will continue to take action to ensure teaching remains an attractive and fulfilling career. The figures of postgraduate and…


Written Answers — Department for Education: Children: Education (6 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: In the spring of 2019, a consultation was held on proposals for a mandatory register of children not attending state or registered independent schools to help local authorities carry out their responsibilities in relation to children not in school. Almost 5000 responses were received to the consultation which closed in June 2019. They have now been considered and a formal government…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Out-of-school Education (6 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Education, remains committed to legislate in order to strengthen Ofsted’s powers in relation to its investigation of unregistered independent schools. We are working closely with Ofsted to clarify what those enhanced powers will look like so that anyone found to be running an illegal school complies with the law or is prosecuted and that…

Educational Opportunities: Working Classes – Motion to Take Note (5 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I too am grateful to the noble Baroness, Lady Morris, for bringing not only an important issue to the attention of the House but one that covers, in the first weeks of my job, the entire department. As a child from a working-class household, for whom education was the vital route to where I stand today, I agree with her that few issues could be so important. Like the noble Baroness,…

Schoolchildren: Dyslexia and Neurodiverse Conditions – Question for Short Debate (4 Mar 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I join other noble Lords in paying tribute once again to the noble Lord, Lord Addington, who is a noted champion of neurodiversity. I thank him and other noble Lords for their speeches this evening on this important topic. The attainment gap that we are dealing with here is a very serious issue. It is the Government’s ambition that every child should have access to a world-class…

FEBRUARY 2020

Children and Families: Early Years Interventions – Motion to Take Note (27 Feb 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I too congratulate the right reverend Prelate the Bishop of Gloucester on securing this debate and all noble Lords who have spoken on this important issue. I am grateful for this opportunity to set out the Government’s approach to improving early years interventions. I hope that the level of co-ordination, although not perfect, will assure the right reverend Prelate and other…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Apprentices: Taxation (25 Feb 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The apprenticeship levy underpins our reforms to raise apprenticeship quality and supports employers to make long-term, sustainable investments in the skills they need to grow. Income from the levy is used to fund apprenticeships in all employers, both those who pay the levy and those who do not. We value the employer-led element of apprenticeships and are receptive to their concerns of…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Foundation Courses: Finance (13 Feb 2020)

Baroness Berridge: ​Philip Augar and his independent panel have made thoughtful recommendations on tuition fee levels and loan repayment, the balance of funding between universities, further education, apprenticeships and adult learning, and we will consider all these recommendations carefully. We are considering the report carefully but have not yet taken decisions with regard to the recommendations put…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Admissions (13 Feb 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Universities are independent, autonomous bodies. As such, they are responsible for their own admissions decisions. We are aware that many universities already adopt contextual admissions practices, to widen access of students from disadvantaged backgrounds. The Office for Students has encouraged the use of contextual admissions and the Government supports such initiatives.

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Admissions (13 Feb 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Universities are independent, autonomous bodies. As such, they are responsible for their own admissions decisions. The Office for Students is conducting a review of the admissions system and have committed to keeping Ministers and officials regularly informed of the emerging views and any recommendations from this work. The review is due to report later this year. The Government has…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Overseas Students: EU Nationals (13 Feb 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We announced on 28 May 2019 guarantees on student finance for EU nationals. EU nationals (and their family members) who start a course in England in the 2020/21 academic year or before will continue to be eligible for ‘home fee’ status and student finance support from Student Finance England for the duration of their course, provided they meet the residency requirement. Applications for…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Educational Exchanges: EU Countries (13 Feb 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The shape and content of EU Programmes post-2020, including Erasmus+, are currently being negotiated in the EU institutions and have not yet been finalised. The UK government is preparing for every eventuality, and is considering a wide range of options with regards to the future of international exchange and collaboration in education and training, including potential domestic alternatives….

Written Answers — Department for Education: GCE A-level (12 Feb 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Recognition of a range of academic qualifications, including qualifications for access to higher education, is covered by the Council of Europe/UNESCO Convention on the Recognition of Qualifications concerning Higher Education in the European Region, to which most countries in the European Region, including the UK, are signatories. The UK National Recognition Advice Centre (UK NARIC)…

Hate Crime: Anti-Semitism – Question (11 Feb 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the Government are committed to combating all forms of antisemitism. Our cross-party working group ensures that we are alive to Jewish community concerns and can respond effectively, alongside the advice of the noble Lord, Lord Mann, as our independent adviser. We have spent nearly £860,000 this year on projects tackling religiously and racially motivated hatred, including almost…

Housing: Social Homes for Rent – Question (11 Feb 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, this Government’s priority is to boost the housing supply. We remain committed to increasing social housing, with £9 billion in the affordable housing programme delivering around 250,000 new affordable homes, including homes for social rent. We have fully supported local authorities to build by removing the HRA borrowing caps and setting a long-term rent deal, and are committed…

Housing: New Homes – Question (11 Feb 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, we have delivered more than 1.5 million new homes since 2010, with last year seeing over 241,000 net additions—the highest level delivered for over 30 years—but there is much more to do. We will review everything from planning reforms to housing zones, backed with more than £44 billion of support, over five years. To make the planning process simpler, we will publish a planning…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Erasmus+ Programme (11 Feb 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Withdrawal Agreement Act 2020 ensures that students, young people, and learners will be able to participate fully in the remainder of the current Erasmus+ programme and organisations should continue to bid for the Erasmus+ programme to the end of 2020. As stated in the Political Declaration, the UK is open to participation in certain EU programmes, such as the next Erasmus+ programme…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Erasmus+ Programme (11 Feb 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Since it was first published by the European Commission in May 2018, the government has been involved in discussions on the draft regulation for the next programme. Discussions in the EU institutions are ongoing and the regulation has yet to be finalised. Future participation in EU programmes will be a subject of our negotiations on the future UK-EU relationship.

Written Answers — Department for Education: Erasmus+ Programme (5 Feb 2020)

Baroness Berridge: The Political Declaration states the UK is open to participation in certain EU programmes, such as the next Erasmus+ programme (2021-27), if it is in our interest to do so. The proposed regulations for the next 2021-27 Erasmus+ programme are still being discussed in the EU and have yet to be finalised. Our future participation will be subject to negotiations on the UK-EU relationship….

Written Answers — Department for Education: Royal Birmingham Conservatoire: Finance (3 Feb 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Birmingham City University, of which The Royal Birmingham Conservatoire is a part, is registered with the Office for Students (OfS) in the approved (fee cap) category of the OfS’s register. It is funded by government, via the OfS, in a way that is consistent with the approach the OfS takes to other such providers, including those in London. While the Secretary of State for Education issues…

JANUARY 2020

Social Mobility – Question for Short Debate (29 Jan 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, as a beneficiary of social mobility, I am honoured to answer this debate on behalf of the Government. I thank the noble Baroness, Lady Tyler, for raising these issues and for securing so many speakers to ask questions of me at the Dispatch Box. I first commend the excellent maiden speech of my noble friend Lord Choudrey and applaud his community support and leadership as an employer…

Apprenticeship Levy – Question (28 Jan 2020)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, this month we began the transition of the smaller employers which do not pay the levy on to our apprenticeship service, currently used by levy-paying employers. This will give SMEs greater choice in the training providers they can use and more control over apprenticeship decisions for their businesses. The apprenticeship levy funds apprenticeships for all employers and we will…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Standards (28 Jan 2020)

Baroness Berridge: UK higher education providers with degree-awarding powers are responsible for the academic standards of their awards and for the quality of provision, irrespective of where or how courses are delivered or who delivers them. The external review of Transnational Education (TNE) has been carried out by the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (QAA) on behalf of funders, regulators and…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Erasmus+ Programme and Horizon Europe (24 Jan 2020)

Baroness Berridge: This government values the strong collaborative partnerships that we have across Europe in the areas of science, education, research and innovation and want to continue to support these opportunities. The terms of the Withdrawal Agreement mean that the UK will continue to participate in EU Programmes financed by the 2014-2020 Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) until their closure….

Written Answers — Department for Education: Post-18 Education and Funding Review (24 Jan 2020)

Baroness Berridge: We want to ensure we have a joined-up education system that is accessible to all and encourages the development of the skills we need as a country. Philip Augar and his independent panel have made thoughtful recommendations on tuition fee levels and loan repayment, the balance of funding between universities, further education, apprenticeships and adult learning, and we are considering all…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Pay (16 Jan 2020)

Baroness Berridge: While universities are autonomous institutions and responsible for setting the pay of their staff, they receive significant amounts of public funding and are rightly subject to public scrutiny.‎ Vice chancellor salaries must be justifiable and should not be excessive.‎ The process for setting pay must be transparent. The government agrees with the recommendation made by the Committee of…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Freedom of Expression (16 Jan 2020)

Baroness Berridge: This government will ensure that our universities are places where free speech can thrive and will strengthen academic freedoms. The freedom to express views openly, challenge ideas and engage in robust debate is crucial to the student experience and to democracy. Individuals should never be in a position where they can be stopped from, or are made to feel inhibited in, expressing an opinion…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Hate Crime (16 Jan 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Any incident of hate crime is unacceptable and we cannot tolerate staff and students being victims of it at our world-leading universities. Higher education (HE) providers have clear responsibilities under the Equality Act 2010. They should discharge their responsibilities fully and have robust policies and procedures in place to comply with the law, and to investigate and swiftly address…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Coventry University (14 Jan 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Effective management of a university and meeting the demands of high-quality teaching, research and delivering quality outcomes for students is a complex task. Decisions on the structure of leadership teams or the job titles within any institutional hierarchy are an issue of institutional autonomy. However, students and taxpayers all contribute to our higher education system, and rightly…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Crime (14 Jan 2020)

Baroness Berridge: Criminal acts and misconduct are unacceptable in our world-leading universities, which should be safe and inclusive environments. Universities are autonomous institutions, and it is for each provider to determine what information should be collected and reported. Institutions have no statutory requirement to report crime statistics but have a responsibility to ensure students feel safe and…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Admissions (7 Jan 2020)

Baroness Berridge: This government believes that a university education should be available to everyone who has the potential to benefit from it, and that higher education providers must continue to take steps to level the playing field for those from disadvantaged backgrounds and other under-represented groups. All providers wishing to charge tuition fees above the basic fee level must have an access and…

NOVEMBER 2019

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Intellectual Property (5 Nov 2019)

Baroness Berridge: The government has developed bespoke advice, as part of the Trusted Research campaign, which will help UK universities and research institutions make informed decisions about international collaboration and, in doing so, protect their intellectual property, sensitive research and personal information. The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) and the Centre for the Protection of National…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities (5 Nov 2019)

Baroness Berridge: The Office for Students (OfS) is responsible for safeguarding standards within the sector. It ensures that the Department for Education works collaboratively with the sector to make sure that it acts in the best interests of students. The regulatory framework is designed to ensure that higher education providers are: providing value for money for students; are taking action to improve access…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Solicitors: Training (5 Nov 2019)

Baroness Berridge: Professional and Career Development Loans (PCDLs) closed to new applicants in January 2019. The department identified the majority of prospective applicants had access to statutory loans, such as Advanced Learner Loans and postgraduate master’s loans, for the courses they intended to study. Demand for PCDLs had fallen significantly as a result. It was not possible to assess the impact of…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Finance (5 Nov 2019)

Baroness Berridge: The Office for Students (OfS) is responsible for assessing and monitoring the financial sustainability of registered higher education (HE) providers in England. The English HE sector overall remains in reasonable financial health, according to the OfS, in its report published on 4 April 2019. The OfS has currently registered 388 HE providers. This means that it has assessed that each of those…

Universities: Anti-Semitism – Question (4 Nov 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the Government strongly encourage higher education providers to adopt the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of anti-Semitism. The Universities Minister and the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government have, between them, written to providers a total of three times. I can confirm that five providers have informed the Government that they have…

OCTOBER 2019

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Racial Harassment (31 Oct 2019)

Baroness Berridge: Racial harassment is unacceptable and we cannot tolerate staff and students being victims of it at our world-leading universities. Higher education providers have clear responsibilities under the Equality Act 2010 and should discharge their responsibilities fully and have robust policies and procedures in place to comply with the law, to investigate and swiftly address incidents reported to…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Universities: Racial Harassment (31 Oct 2019)

Baroness Berridge: Racial harassment is unacceptable and we cannot tolerate staff and students being victims of it at our world-leading universities. Higher education providers have clear responsibilities under the Equality Act 2010 and should discharge their responsibilities fully and have robust policies and procedures in place to comply with the law, to investigate and swiftly address incidents reported to…

Written Answers — Department for Education: EU Grants and Loans (30 Oct 2019)

Baroness Berridge: The government places great value upon international exchange and collaboration in education and training. It is also committed to continuing to back UK researchers and innovators by supporting measures to enable world-class collaborative research and innovation. This will continue to be the case after we leave the EU and establish new relationships with institutions across Europe and the…

Prisons – Question (29 Oct 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, since 2010, 20 prisons have closed, the majority of which were built prior to 1900, and four prisons and 11 house blocks were opened. Due to predicted changes in the prison population, no further closures are currently planned, save for those that have already been announced. The Prime Minister has committed £2.5 billion to build 10,000 new additional places. I hope the noble Lord…

Prisons – Question (29 Oct 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I am grateful to the noble Lord for giving me advance notice. The statistic that I have been provided with from a 2015 Ministry of Justice survey is that 40% of male remand prisoners have a common mental health problem. I agree with the noble Lord that that figure is too high, but I assure him that mental health training and specific self-harm and suicide prevention have been…

Prisons – Question (29 Oct 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I am grateful to the noble Lord for his question. Since 2010 there has been a net increase in the number of places of just over 1,100. It is precisely to avoid an increase in crowding that the Victorian estate cannot be closed at this time. Ten thousand new places will come on line, and an additional 3,000 are committed to at Wellingborough and Glen Parva. Central to the…

Prisons – Question (29 Oct 2019)

Baroness Berridge: The noble Lord is correct that, of all crime committed, about three-quarters is due to reoffending. There has therefore been an overhaul in relation to education and employment in prisons. The budget has been devolved to governors so that they can commission the education required for their prison populations. Prisoners are now assessed in basic maths and English when they enter prison, with…

Prisons – Question (29 Oct 2019)

Baroness Berridge: I am grateful to the right revered Prelate. I happened upon exactly that series and watched with interest the challenges faced by the—at that time—female governor of Her Majesty’s Prison Winchester. The recruitment of staff has in fact gone better than expected; 2,500 prison officers were recruited seven months ahead of schedule. However, there are increasing needs in relation to…

Prisons – Question (29 Oct 2019)

Baroness Berridge: Yes, I will undertake to obtain more-up-to-date statistics. If there has been a survey since 2015, I will of course provide that information before the end of the Parliament, whenever that may be.

Written Answers — Department for Education: Engineering: Graduates (29 Oct 2019)

Baroness Berridge: Information on the destinations of students 6 months after leaving UK higher education is collected and published by the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) as part of the Destination of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) survey. Latest statistics were published in June 2018 for students leaving their courses in the 2016/17 academic year, and are available at the following link:…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Overseas Students: Hong Kong (24 Oct 2019)

Baroness Berridge: Universities have a duty of care to all students, domestic and international, and must take reasonably practicable steps to ensure freedom of speech, within the law, is secured for staff, students and visiting speakers. Studying for a degree gives students from different backgrounds and perspectives the freedom to explore contrasting views and the skills to evaluate information, including…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Students: Sexual Offences (24 Oct 2019)

Baroness Berridge: The government takes any form of violence and sexual harassment, including in Higher Education (HE), extremely seriously. As independent and autonomous institutions, universities are responsible for providing a safe and inclusive environment for all students. The legal obligation for ensuring that students do not face discrimination, harassment or victimisation rests with the HE providers….

Written Answers — Department for Education: Erasmus+ Programme (24 Oct 2019)

Baroness Berridge: The government places great value upon international exchange and collaboration in education and training. This will continue to be the case after we leave the EU and establish new relationships with academic institutions across Europe and the rest of the world. If it is in the UK’s interests, we will seek to participate in specific EU programmes as a third country. While the regulations…

Queen’s Speech – Debate (6th Day) (22 Oct 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the noble Lord has spoken for more than six minutes.

Written Answers — Department for Education: *No heading* (8 Oct 2019)

Baroness Berridge: The UK has a world-class reputation, with globally renowned teaching and cutting-edge research and innovation. We want to deliver better outcomes and value for students, employers and taxpayers who underwrite the system. The Office for Students (OfS) is now fully operational and puts students and student choices at the heart of the higher education (HE) sector and its regulation. By…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Office for Students: Registration (7 Oct 2019)

Baroness Berridge: There is no meaningful average time for higher education establishments receiving an outcome on their Office for Students (OfS) registration application. This is because the time taken from initial receipt of the application to a final registration decision is dependent on a number of factors. These factors include the completeness of the application initially submitted, the scale of the…

Human Rights: Future Trade – Motion to Take Note (3 Oct 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I congratulate the noble and right reverend Lord, Lord Harries, on securing today’s debate, which comes at such an opportune time—a time of continuity and exploration. I thank noble Lords for their contributions to this informative debate on human rights and future trade deals. As a former project director for a Commonwealth initiative on freedom of religion or belief, as a…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Students: Rents (3 Oct 2019)

Baroness Berridge: An error has been identified in the written answer given on 09 September 2019. The correct answer should have been: It has not proved possible to respond to this question in the time available before Prorogation. Ministers will correspond directly with the Member. Higher education providers are autonomous bodies, independent from the government. The department plays no direct role in…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Students: Rents (3 Oct 2019)

Baroness Berridge: It has not proved possible to respond to this question in the time available before Prorogation. Ministers will correspond directly with the Member. Higher education providers are autonomous bodies, independent from the government. The department plays no direct role in the provision of student residential accommodation. The department assesses student accommodation rent levels through the…

T-levels – Question (1 Oct 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, it is anticipated that 16 year-olds who undertake the new T-levels will mostly then go on to work. However, Her Majesty’s Government also expect that T-levels will be acceptable as entry requirements to our most selective universities. I assure the noble Baroness that this issue was on the agenda at the last meeting of the higher education advisory group in the department in May….

SEPTEMBER 2019

Written Answers — Department for Education: Students: Loans (30 Sep 2019)

Baroness Berridge: An error has been identified in the written answer given on 09 September 2019. The correct answer should have been: It has not proved possible to respond to this question in the time available before Prorogation. Ministers will correspond directly with the Member. The information is not held centrally and could only be obtained at disproportionate cost.

Written Answers — Department for Education: Students: Loans (30 Sep 2019)

Baroness Berridge: It has not proved possible to respond to this question in the time available before Prorogation. Ministers will correspond directly with the Member. The information is not held centrally and could only be obtained at disproportionate cost.

Written Answers — Department for Education: Higher Education: Registration (9 Sep 2019)

Baroness Berridge: The department is unable to comment on individual cases related to the Office for Students (OfS) registration. The department supports the OfS as an effective independent regulator in its aim of safeguarding a fair market for students of all backgrounds to undertake higher education. Neither the department nor our ministers can intervene in judicial reviews of the decisions of the OfS.

Written Answers — Department for Education: Higher Education: Registration (9 Sep 2019)

Baroness Berridge: The Higher Education and Research Act (HERA) sets out the procedure under which the Office for Students (OfS) refuses registration applications should a higher education provider not meet one or more of the OfS initial conditions of registration. The OfS will inform a provider to tell it they are minded to refuse its application. The provider then has an opportunity to make representations to…

Written Answers — Department for Education: Students: Loans (9 Sep 2019)

Baroness Berridge: The government has introduced a system that allows weekly sharing of data between HM Revenue & Customs and the Student Loans Company (SLC) so that loan repayments and the clearing of balances can be updated more accurately. In the past, such data sharing has been on an annual basis, which could mean a delay before the repayment system recognised the loan had been paid in full. The SLC allows…

JULY 2019

China: Organ Harvesting – Question (25 Jul 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, it seems from this inquiry that the time you have to wait for an organ transplant in China is a matter of weeks, as opposed to every other country in the world, including similarly populous countries such as India, where you wait months, if not years. Could my noble friend meet his counterpart in the Department of Health and Social Care to discuss this? Maybe the Chinese have…

FCO Support for Persecuted Christians – Question (24 Jul 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I am grateful to my noble friend but one factor influencing the persecution of Christians is, unfortunately, that in some contexts they are seen as a leftover from the Empire. Has my noble friend considered whether the UK Government taking on the role of defining anti-Christian hatred could expose victims of persecution to more risk? Surely this is a role for communities—for…

Religious Persecution – Motion to Take Note (11 Jul 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I too thank my noble friend Lord Elton for the timing of this debate, a few days after the review into the persecution of Christians. I appreciate that this debate is about the persecution of all on the basis of their faith or belief, but I will focus on the review. I declare my interests as a practising Anglican and as the co-chair of the all-party parliamentary group. It is most…

Commemoration: Victims of Religious Violence – Question (10 Jul 2019)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans they have to recognise the newly designated United Nations Day for commemorating the victims of acts of violence based on religion or belief on 22 August.

JUNE 2019

Birmingham Commonwealth Games Bill [HL] – Second Reading (25 Jun 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I declare my interest as an executive member of CPA UK and thank my noble friend the Minister for his meeting with interested Peers, which was really useful. Although the hosting of the Commonwealth Games by Birmingham in 2022 is undoubtedly great news for the West Midlands region, or what is now called the midlands engine—I am from the East Midlands…

Anti-Semitism – Motion to Take Note (20 Jun 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I am grateful to all noble Lords who are speaking in today’s debate, which is the second on anti-Semitism within a year in your Lordships’ House—perhaps evidence that this is a light sleeper, to borrow a phrase. Of course, I am not Jewish, but I co-chair the APPG for International Freedom of Religion or Belief, and anti-Semitism is a denial of such freedom. I am also a…

Syria: Idlib Attacks – Statement (18 Jun 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, most sadly it has become apparent that a small number of British children are in this region, having been taken out there by their parents. The scant information we have is that we think they are in the north-eastern part of Syria. Can my noble friend please assure us that DfID is doing its best to locate these British children so that they can be kept out of harm’s way while we…

House of Lords: Gender Equality – Question (6 Jun 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the question of diversity is one commonly asked when we are speaking outside of this House. It is important for the public to know more about the membership of the House. On approaching the Library, it surprised me to learn that there has been no voluntary monitoring form sent out to Members to collate information on other protected characteristics, such as geographical diversity,…

MAY 2019

Nigeria: Fulani – Question (9 May 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, as a fellow officer of the APPG it was a pleasure to respond to the request from the noble Baroness, Lady Cox, for the group to launch an inquiry into this matter. The evidence has been that the violence goes across many states but that it is complex and various factors are at play. One key theme has been that the perception is rising that religion is a motivating factor, due to the…

APRIL 2019

Privileges and Conduct – Motion to Agree (30 Apr 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I wish very briefly to add to this debate. I have sat through the entirety of this debate because I believe, on behalf of this House but also on behalf of the staff, that it is a very important matter. I often have the privilege of addressing young people through the education department, who say to me: “Describe a day in your life in the House of Lords”. Today, my day began…

Written Answers — Home Office: British Nationality (29 Apr 2019)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether the “best interests of the children test” pursuant to section 55 of the Borders, Citizens and Immigration Act 2009 was applied in the cases where those having their citizenship revoked had British children in their care.

Immigration: Community Sponsorship – Question (25 Apr 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, it is good to hear that there is now an acceleration in the number of groups applying to be community sponsors, but—as I understand it—community sponsorship is currently available only to refugees who come through the various vulnerable people schemes. At the moment it is not being used as a model for those who apply for asylum in the UK and are successful in being granted…

Written Answers — Department for International Development: Syria: British Nationals Abroad (25 Apr 2019)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what attempts they have made directly, or through, the UN or relief agencies, to assess the conditions in which British children are living in internally displaced persons’ camps in Syria.

Written Answers — Department for International Development: Syria: British Nationals Abroad (25 Apr 2019)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether the internally displaced persons’ camps in Syria in which British children reside are under the control of the government of Syria or the Kurdish authorities.

Middle East: British Nationals Abroad (16 Apr 2019)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the humanitarian conditions for British children living in refugee camps in Syria or in territory that was formerly part of the sovereign states of Syria or Iraq.

British Citizenship: Children – Question (10 Apr 2019)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they have taken to review the access to legal redress and humanitarian protection of children whose parents have been deprived of British citizenship.

British Citizenship: Children – Question (10 Apr 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I am grateful to the Minister for her Answer. The story begins for all these British children with their parents—such as the parents of nine year-old Sara—taking them out to join IS. My noble friend has not explained why these British children, who cannot make their own way home or access consular services, do not benefit from a decision-making process in the Home Office on…

Written Answers — Foreign and Commonwealth Office: Middle East: British Nationals Abroad (10 Apr 2019)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government how many British children are living in refugee camps in Syria or in territory that was formerly part of the sovereign states of Syria or Iraq.

Written Answers — Home Office: British Nationals Abroad: Middle East (9 Apr 2019)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government how many British children have been repatriated from Syria or from territory that was formerly part of the sovereign states of Syria or Iraq in the last 12 months.

China: Religious Freedom – Question (4 Apr 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I am grateful to hear from the Minister that we have made bilateral representations and used our seat at the Human Rights Council, but there are other, often more subtle, ways we can exert influence. The UK Government are an employer of many local staff in our embassies; our soft-power institutions, such as the British Council and perhaps the BBC, also employ a lot of local staff….

Windrush Compensation Scheme – Statement (3 Apr 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, while welcoming this compensation scheme, I find it very sad—the noble Lord, Lord Paddick, alluded to this—that the word “Windrush” is now in many people’s minds associated with this system in the Home Office. There is now, of course, a national day, 22 June. Can my noble friend the Minister please outline whether specific money is being allocated so that that day can be…

MARCH 2019

Honours System – Question (26 Mar 2019)

Baroness Berridge: I thank my noble friend the Minister for his Answer, but in 1917 the introduction of a system to recognise service to your country that included the word “Empire” was appropriate—it is not so today. For this reason, many people, often from within the black and minority ethnic community, refuse to accept—or even to apply on behalf of others for—an honour. Can my noble friend the…

Shamima and Jarrah Begum – Statement (11 Mar 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, in relation to this matter, I raised the specific situation of children twice in previous Urgent Questions. Our law has a strong history of not just taking the interests of a child into account: in our family courts the interests of the child are paramount. How can it be that we do not have any legal process for the interests of the child to be considered separately from those of…

International Women’s Day – Motion to Take Note (7 Mar 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, today is the day to celebrate progress while recognising that there is more to do. I thank the researchers in the Library for providing me with a favourite number: 228. I am only the 228th woman to have been appointed under the Life Peerages Act since 1958. I find this sobering when I think of the centuries of history in this Chamber. Many barriers still exist, but like my noble…

FEBRUARY 2019

Islamic Ceremony: Civil Marriage Registration – Question (28 Feb 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, recent High Court decisions show that this is an issue that affects religious ceremonies generally, but such ceremonies are marriages under UK criminal law if they are forced marriages. However, a victim of a forced religious marriage can then be left destitute as there are no remedies that follow to get access to the matrimonial property—unfortunately, Parliament left that gap….

Citizenship Status – Statement (20 Feb 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I am grateful to the Minister for the clarification of the legal status of any children of those deprived of their British citizenship. Will she clarify what exactly the duties of the Home Secretary are? If he is reviewing information that may be confidential but not classified, which reveals safeguarding issues in relation to the children of people who have been deprived of their…

Syria: UK Nationals – Statement (18 Feb 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, can I clarify something that my noble friend the Minister outlined? Although she cannot comment on specific cases, where the Home Secretary has to make a decision and the decision involves a parent and a child, how many decisions are actually being made? There is a long-standing principle in our family courts that the interests of the children are often not the same as those of the…

Schools: Racist Incidents – Question (18 Feb 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, my noble friend is correct that the professionals and schools are at the front line of dealing with these issues. In the past, one issue has been the lack of diversity in the workforce in our schools. What progress has been made in ensuring ethnic diversity in the workforce, and particularly in the leadership of our schools?

Police: Recruitment and Retention – Question (12 Feb 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, in recent years television programmes have taken seriously the issue of role modelling: look at the BBC’s “Luther” and ITV’s DS Sunny Khan in “Unforgotten”. But these role models cannot be just fictional. Will the Minister outline the statistics for those in the senior ranks of our forces from a black and minority-ethnic background?

China: Uighur Muslims – Question (11 Feb 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, there have been consistent reports from within these re-education camps that Uighur Muslims were forced to give DNA tissue and blood, and consistent allegations that Falun Gong followers have been subject to forced organ harvesting. Have we spoken to the Chinese about our worries about those tests and their purpose, and whether they are in any way connected to the recent worrying…

Prosperity Fund: Sustainable Development Goals – Question (7 Feb 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the website for the fund also states that it has programmes to tackle barriers to prosperity for certain excluded groups, particularly rural women, young people and people with disabilities. Will the Minister please outline how the fund is being used to tackle the barriers to prosperity that exist for many minority religious or belief groups, who face high or very high levels of…

Deportation: Jamaica – Private Notice Question (6 Feb 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, while it is welcome that the new Home Secretary has made this a central plank, there is continuing concern as these cases continue to bubble up. Can the Minister assure us that the Home Secretary is having a series of meetings not just with the high commissioners of these various Caribbean islands, but also with community representatives? May I remind my noble friend that a…

Written Answers — Foreign and Commonwealth Office: China: Genetic Engineering (4 Feb 2019)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what representations, if any, they have made to the government of China about reports that babies have been born in China with edited genes.

JANUARY 2019

Written Answers — Department of Health and Social Care: China: Genetic Engineering (30 Jan 2019)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what discussions they have had with the World Health Organisation about the ethical issues and potential long-term risks associated with gene-edited babies born in China.

Open Doors 2019 World Watch List – Question (23 Jan 2019)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I too welcome the inquiry and the acknowledgment of the scale of the persecution. One practical step that the Government took was to create the Syrian vulnerable persons resettlement scheme to enable people to come to this country. However, the recent figures released show that in the second quarter of last year, only 0.08% of the people who came to the UK from Syria were…

OCTOBER 2018

Asylum-seekers and FoRB – Question (15 Oct 2018)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans they have to improve the assessment by the Home Office of asylum applications made on the grounds of religious or belief based persecution.

JULY 2018

Freedom of Religion or Belief – Question (19 Jul 2018)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans, if any, they have to appoint an Ambassador on Freedom of Religion or Belief.

Children: Forced Marriage – Question (10 Jul 2018)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, while the Forced Marriage Unit is a joint initiative of the Foreign Office and the Home Office, there is also much government focus and spending through the Department for International Development. Can my noble friend outline whether those Ministers and officials are also inputting into this unit? There seems to be a correlation, or at least an overlap, between the countries where…

JUNE 2018

Nigeria – Question for Short Debate (28 Jun 2018)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I thank the noble Lord, Lord Alton, for securing this, unfortunately timely, debate and declare an interest as project director of the Commonwealth Initiative for Freedom of Religion and Belief. While the focus in Nigeria was, for many years, on violence in the Niger Delta area over oil revenues or on the Boko Haram attacks in the north-east, the escalation of attacks between…

MV “Empire Windrush” – Question (21 Jun 2018)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans they have to introduce an annual celebration of the anniversary of the arrival of the MV Windrush on 22 June 1948.

Civil Liability Bill [HL] – Report (12 Jun 2018)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I have spoken at every stage of the Bill and I first thank the Minister for his time discussing matters with me. For those who have been in your Lordships’ Chamber for the entirety of this debate, it is interesting to note how blame has been passed around like a squash ball. Is the fault that of the Government for not acting quickly enough, the insurance companies, those…

Burma – Question (12 Jun 2018)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, 32% of Burma’s population are from ethnic minorities, so we are seeing the systematic persecution of people spread from one group like the Rohingya to another like those in Rakhine state. Can my noble friend the Minister please outline whether this systematic persecution has had any impact on the ability of the UK Government to employ people from the Burmese ethnic-minority…

University Admissions: Equality – Question (7 Jun 2018)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I too thank the noble Baroness, Lady Deech, for securing such a timely debate, as this week there was welcome coverage on university admissions from black and minority ethnic backgrounds. As a working-class alumni of Emmanuel College, to hear Cambridge University accept that it needs help from parents and schools prompted me to speak. I agree wholeheartedly with the Universities…

MAY 2018

Forced Marriage – Question (24 May 2018)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they are taking to ensure that the Commonwealth Communiqué’s commitment to eradicate forced marriage is realised, and to assess its inter-relationship with forced conversion.

Written Answers — Foreign and Commonwealth Office: Nigeria: Violence (16 May 2018)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of reports of collusion between Boko Haram and armed Fulani Herders in Nigeria.

Written Answers — Foreign and Commonwealth Office: Leah Sharibu (16 May 2018)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they are taking to support the government of Nigeria to return Leah Sharibu safely from Boko Haram.

Civil Liability Bill [HL] – Committee (1st Day) (Continued) (10 May 2018)

Baroness Berridge: I rise briefly to speak to the amendments I have in this group, which refer to a report by the FCA as well as a report being laid before Parliament. It is important in this context to look back at Second Reading and the Government’s confession that the insurance industry had not done all it could to get on top of the issue of fraud. In some respects, on Second Reading one could have…

Civil Liability Bill [HL] – Committee (1st Day) (Continued) (10 May 2018)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I have added my name to Amendments 27, 47 and 52, to which the noble Lord, Lord Marks, has referred, which relate to some of the most fundamental points in the reforms. They involve the procedure which will exist for genuine claimants through the small claims track and/or the portal. I am saddened but grateful to my noble and learned friend the Minister to learn that it is not an…

Civil Liability Bill [HL] – Committee (1st Day) (Continued) (10 May 2018)

Baroness Berridge: I refer my noble and learned friend to his previous comment which, fairly, recognises that all parties are to blame, which is something that I think he conceded at Second Reading—that the insurance industry shares part of the blame. May I clarify? When he says that all parties are to blame for this, may I clarify that he was not including the genuine claimants, who have become a focus…

Civil Liability Bill [HL] – Committee (1st Day) (10 May 2018)

Baroness Berridge: That is not the point that is being made here. I would be grateful if my noble and learned friend could address the question. We are all, I believe, in your Lordships’ House working on the assumption that the target of the Bill is fraud, not genuine claimants. So the specific question is, where is the evidence that people who are claimants when they drive in the course of their…

Civil Liability Bill [HL] – Committee (1st Day) (10 May 2018)

Baroness Berridge: I hate to interrupt my noble friend, but in principle, what is wrong with a call saying that? If someone is driving in the course of his employment, it is in a different category because the employer will have to give evidence that he was indeed driving in the course of his employment. There is a danger that we are saying all these calls are a bad thing, or that all claims management…

Civil Liability Bill [HL] – Committee (1st Day) (10 May 2018)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I shall speak to Amendments 8, 10 and 49A in this group. I join with the comments made by the noble Baroness, Lady Primarolo, in relation to genuine claimants. As I understand it, even the insurance companies accept that the majority of claimants in this area are genuine. It is a high burden on your Lordships’ House to ensure that the Bill hits the target of fraudulent claims…

Civil Liability Bill [HL] – Committee (1st Day) (10 May 2018)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I have added my name to the amendment in the names of the noble Lords, Lord Sharkey and Lord Marks. I agree with the comments of the chairman of the Delegated Powers Committee, although obviously I cannot comment on the legal qualifications of the person who telephoned him. As I outlined at Second Reading, I have practised in this area and have dealt with these claims, and I know…

APRIL 2018

Commonwealth Summit: Freedom of Religion or Belief – Question (25 Apr 2018)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I thank the Minister for his Answer and declare my interest in relation to a Commonwealth initiative on freedom of religion or belief. While it is unfortunate that Her Majesty’s Government’s priority of freedom of religion or belief did not find its way into the communiqué, especially bearing in mind that the communiqué makes reference to the Rohingya…

Civil Liability Bill [HL] – Second Reading (24 Apr 2018)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, it is a pleasure to go down memory lane to the nine years I spent as a personal injury and licensing barrister at Kings Chambers in Manchester. During my time as a junior barrister, dealing with road traffic accidents seemed to be compulsory basic training, rather akin to the traffic list in a magistrates’ court for the criminal Bar of this era. I should state that I was a…

Social Mobility Commission – Question (23 Apr 2018)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, in 2016 your Lordships’ House had a one-year Select Committee looking into social mobility, on which I served as a member. We looked at social mobility for those young people who did not go to university. In fact, the majority of young people go into jobs, vocational training such as apprenticeships or into further education. Could the Minister please outline whether there is…

MARCH 2018

Immigration: Asylum Claims – Question (28 Mar 2018)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I thank Her Majesty’s Government for the initial constructive response to the serious concerns—outlined in the report by the All-Party Parliamentary Group for International Freedom of Religion or Belief, which I co-chair—about people claiming asylum on grounds of persecution for their faith or belief. In particular, there were concerns about religious-based…

Commonwealth Summit: Human Rights – Question (21 Mar 2018)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what are their human rights priorities for the communiqué of the Commonwealth Summit in April 2018.

Commonwealth Summit: Human Rights – Question (21 Mar 2018)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, on 28 February of last year the Prime Minister stated: “We must reaffirm our determination to stand up for the freedom of people of all religions to practice their beliefs in peace and safety. And I hope to take further measures as a government to support this”. That commitment, of course, is also outlined in the Commonwealth charter. While I am grateful for the…

FEBRUARY 2018

Commonwealth Summit – Question (20 Feb 2018)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they have taken to promote the forthcoming Commonwealth Summit with schools, universities, non-governmental organisations, and businesses.

JANUARY 2018

Previous Business – Lords: Grand Committee (18 Jan 2018)

Celebrating the 70th anniversary in 2018 of the arrival of MV Empire Windrush – Baroness Berridge. Short debate

Syria: Refugees – Question (16 Jan 2018)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I welcome my noble friend’s acceptance of evidence and cases in relation to the treatment of religious minorities that affect aid. However, as outlined by the noble Lord, Lord Alton, this also affects the resettlement programme. Is it not now time that the UK asked the United Nations to hold an independent investigation into these claims, so that we can know the truth as to…

Commonwealth Summit: Faith Leaders – Question (15 Jan 2018)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government how they will ensure the engagement of faith leaders in events around the Commonwealth Summit in April.

Iraq: Religious and Ethnic Minorities – Question for Short Debate (11 Jan 2018)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I too am grateful to the right reverend Prelate the Bishop of Coventry for securing this debate. I declare an interest as co-chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for International Freedom of Religion or Belief. Other noble Lords have eloquently described the plight of different religious minorities in Iraq and the UK aid and military support that has been devoted to restoring…

MV “Empire Windrush” – Question (8 Jan 2018)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I am grateful to hear from the Minister that there will be meetings and consultations, but celebrations cost money. Can he guarantee that, in addition to the Heritage Lottery Fund sum, funds will come from central government to ensure that the celebrations are of a fitting nature?

Written Answers — Home Office: Visas: Burma (8 Jan 2018)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government how many UK visas have been issued to persons living in Myanmar in each visa category since January 2016; and how many they estimate were to (1) Christians, and (2) Muslims.

Written Answers — Foreign and Commonwealth Office: India: Religious Freedom (8 Jan 2018)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of statistics published by Aid to the Church in Need showing that there were 316 attacks on Christians in the first five months of 2017 compared to 365 incidents in the whole of 2016; what representations they have made to the government of India regarding the rise in violence towards religious minorities; and what assessment they…

Written Answers — Foreign and Commonwealth Office: Nigeria: Religious Freedom (8 Jan 2018)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the current levels of violence between religious groups in Nigeria, and of an estimate by the 2017 Global Terrorism Index which states that 60,000 people have been killed in clashes between predominantly Muslim Fulani Herders and predominantly Christian farmers; and what representations have been made to the government of…

DECEMBER 2017

House of Lords: Lord Speaker’s Committee Report – Motion to Take Note (Continued) (19 Dec 2017)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I, too, thank the Lord Speaker, the noble Lord, Lord Burns, and his committee for the report, which makes eminently sensible reading. I wholeheartedly support the proposed changes but there are further significant changes that the introduction of this system of 15-year appointments will require. While scrutiny of legislation is a key role of this House, in our unwritten constitution…

CPS: Disclosure of Evidence – Private Notice Question (18 Dec 2017)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, as I understand it, a recent change in the Crown Prosecution Service is the demise of the disclosure offices, and those duties have been passed back to the police. Barristers are expressing concern about whether the police are adequately resourced or trained to do that. Will my noble and learned friend outline whether that is indeed the case and that there will be a time at which we…

Nepal – Question (5 Dec 2017)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the 2015 constitution was welcome in every regard, except the provisions relating to freedom of religion or belief which, as my noble friend may be aware, were built upon in October by a law being passed that criminalises blasphemy in similar language to the laws in Pakistan and criminalises attempts to convert somebody. Will the Minister please outline what representations we have…

Social Mobility Commission – Statement (4 Dec 2017)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I was a member of your Lordships’ Select Committee on Social Mobility in 2016. The committee looked at the transition from school to work for the majority of young people. The majority actually do not go to university or end up as NEETs; they go into vocational education, training or apprenticeships. Can the Minister outline whether the Government will ensure that at least one…

NOVEMBER 2017

Grenfell Recovery Taskforce – Statement (6 Nov 2017)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, building on the comment by the noble Lord, Lord Shipley, in relation to the terms of reference of the inquiry, it does not seem that the systemic issue that this raises is actually strictly within those terms of reference. It refers to the arrangements that the local authority and other organisations had in place to respond to complaints made by residents in relation to the fire…

Commonwealth Summit 2018 – Question for Short Debate (2 Nov 2017)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I thank the noble Lord, Lord Chidgey, for securing this debate, and declare an interest as the co-project director of the Commonwealth Initiative for Freedom of Religion or Belief and co-chair of the all-party parliamentary group on that subject. Last Wednesday, the all-party group launched a new report, Article 18: From Rhetoric to Reality. At that event my noble friend the…

Calais: Refugees – Question for Short Debate (2 Nov 2017)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I declare my interests as outlined in the register. This debate is tribute to the tenacity of the noble Lord, Lord Roberts, on behalf of refugees. The conditions in Calais are part of a refugee system that is under strain like never before. Those conditions are undermining public confidence in the effectiveness and humanity of the system, but another factor undermining the system in…

OCTOBER 2017

Deaths in Police Custody – Statement (30 Oct 2017)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, the report refers to the disproportionately high numbers of black men in restraint-related deaths, often in contentious circumstances. That is a serious issue because it connects so vividly with the perception many in the BAME community have of the police service. As the report recommends: “Statistics should be published breaking down restraint related deaths by…

Burma: Rohingya – Question for Short Debate (26 Oct 2017)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I am grateful to my noble friend Lady Helic for securing this debate and outlining the truly staggering scale of this crisis. It is not surprising that Bangladesh has struggled to cope. In 10 days, Bangladesh received more refugees than mainland Europe did from across the Mediterranean in the whole of 2016. Although the UK Government have committed £47 million since the end of…

Sri Lanka (12 Oct 2017)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I am grateful to my noble friend Lord Naseby for securing this debate—and I declare an interest as project director for the Commonwealth Initiative for Freedom of Religion and Belief. The Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Sri Lanka in 2013 helped to focus international attention on the human rights failures of previous Sri Lankan Governments, and the decision of the…

Burma – Rohingya People (11 Oct 2017)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, although the overwhelming majority of people have fled to Bangladesh, about 40,000 Rohingya have in fact fled to India. The Indian Government are now threatening to deport them back to Myanmar. Are we going to speak to our colleagues in India to outline their commitments under international law and the principle of non-refoulement, which means that they should not deport to a place where there is a risk of torture?

Fire Safety – Private Notice Question (9 Oct 2017)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, rightly, the focus has been on housing associations and social housing generally but will my noble friend the Minister assure the House that with regard to high-rise buildings that are either in shared ownership or actually in private ownership, the Secretary of State has written to those developers to check that there are not safety concerns in those blocks? Some of the fires that we have seen in other countries have been in privately owned dwellings.

SEPTEMBER 2017

House of Lords (Hereditary Peers) (Abolition of By-Elections) Bill [HL] – Second Reading (8 Sep 2017)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I, too, begin by applauding the hard work of hereditary Peers in this House, such as my noble friend Lord Howe, which is exemplary. This is the first time I have spoken on this issue, but the current system undermines the credibility of all the hard work which your Lordships undertake on behalf of the British public. In January this year, Her Majesty’s Government outlined…

Myanmar: Rohingya People – Private Notice Question (5 Sep 2017)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, yesterday saw nearly a million people take to the streets in Chechnya, so this crisis has the potential to cause instability beyond the region. In response to a Question back in July, my noble friend mentioned that the UK Government since 2014 have given £8 million to the Bangladeshi Government to help support the Rohingyas who have crossed the border. Could my noble friend…

JULY 2017

Refugees – Question for Short Debate (19 Jul 2017)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I am grateful to the right reverend Prelate for securing this debate. I hope Her Majesty’s Government find the recommendations that he has outlined uncontroversial. While I still have questions for the Government, this is actually a good end-of-term report for the Home Office as far as I am concerned. On 21 March 2016 in your Lordships’ House, my noble friend Lord…

Nigeria – Question (18 Jul 2017)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, some of those affected by the conflict in the north of Nigeria are in fact the friends and relatives of British citizens, with hundreds of thousands of them within the British Nigerian diaspora. As well as meeting with Ministers in Nigeria and working through the high commission, could the Foreign and Commonwealth Office reach out specifically to that diaspora in order to hear their…

Myanmar and Bangladesh: Rohingya – Question (11 Jul 2017)

Baroness Berridge: I thank my noble friend for her Answer, but that now makes a total of more than 400,000 refugees in Bangladesh due solely to the religious persecution in Myanmar. Filippo Grandi, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees visited Cox’s Bazar this week and said: “These people deserve a better future than the present conditions of extreme poverty, deprivation and isolation”. Can my…

Grenfell Tower: Rehousing Update – Statement (5 Jul 2017)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, in the Prime Minister’s Statement on 22 June, she first outlined that the accommodation will be on the same terms as the original accommodation, and we have seen a definition of that today. Unfortunately, I understood “same terms” to be in the personal injury lawyer sense, which is to put the person back into the position they would have been in had none of this…

Overseas Development Assistance – Question (4 Jul 2017)

My Lords, in a debate this morning in Westminster Hall, a number of MPs highlighted the correlation between the fragile states in which DfID spends much of its money and high levels of persecution of people on the grounds of faith or belief. I would be grateful if the Minister could assemble a meeting of interested MPs and Peers, particularly with his counterpart the right honourable Alistair…

JUNE 2017

Agriculture: Foreign Workers – Question (28 Jun 2017)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, can my noble friend the Minister please confirm that the migration advisory group will consult the Commonwealth Secretariat and Secretary-General in relation to opportunities for workers to come from Commonwealth countries, as there is a great expectation that there will be new opportunities within the Commonwealth?

Grenfell Tower – Statement (22 Jun 2017)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, as my noble friend outlined, 151 homes have been destroyed. However, has an accurate list been compiled of all the residents of the block? My noble friend outlined that homes will be provided to people on the same terms as the ones they had. Has a clear communication been given that for residents who may have resided in the block without a tenancy agreement, or with a tenancy…

APRIL 2017

Written Answers — Foreign and Commonwealth Office: Egypt: Christianity (27 Apr 2017)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what representations they have made to the government of Egypt regarding the bombings of the Coptic churches in Alexandria and Tanta in April.

Written Answers — Foreign and Commonwealth Office: Egypt: Christianity (27 Apr 2017)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what discussions, or meetings, they have had with (1) Pope Tawadros II of Alexandria, and (2) the leadership of the Coptic Church in the UK, regarding the bombings of the Coptic churches in Alexandria and Tanta in April.

Race in the Workplace: The McGregor-Smith Review – Question for Short Debate (24 Apr 2017)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, my noble friend’s report states that it is now time to act and after spending more than a decade working with many of Britain’s wonderful black and minority ethnic communities, action and even legislation is now needed. It is young people’s lives that are being affected here. As outlined, the first priority has to be data collection, as effective policy or law…

Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting – Question (6 Apr 2017)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, my noble friend the Minister has outlined the design and creation of an appropriate programme. I declare an interest as the leader of a Commonwealth initiative on freedom of religion or belief. Will she consider meeting, as she has done in the past, parliamentarians and representatives from CPA UK, the Youth Parliament and the Commonwealth Youth Parliament so that everyone can play…

MARCH 2017

Debate — Alcohol Abuse (30 Mar 2017)

A national piece of work, looking at the evidence and policies in Yorkshire mill towns, city centres such as Birmingham, Chinatown and boroughs such as Lambeth is well overdue. It would show how much ethnic minorities save the National Health Service ​but also any deficiencies so that people could then access services they need. Perhaps religious leaders could also help bring down the barriers for communities when they need to access other professional services.

Written Answers — Foreign and Commonwealth Office: Religious Freedom (30 Mar 2017)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government how much of the Magna Carta Fund for Human Rights and Democracy will be allocated in 2017–18 to projects on freedom of religion or belief.

Commonwealth – Motion to Take Note (16 Mar 2017)

Baroness Berridge: I raised a specific point about Commonwealth apprenticeships. It is really important that we have this as government policy. If my noble friend could agree to investigate this and write to me, that would be very helpful.

Commonwealth – Motion to Take Note (16 Mar 2017)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I, too, join with noble friends to thank my noble friend Lady Anelay for this debate. The Commonwealth is a 21st century, ahead of the curve multilateral, as its modus operandi is network. Over the last few years, we have heard of networking lunches, networking the room and of course virtual networks, so I join my noble friends Lord Howell and Lord Goodlad in assessing this as part…

Brexit: Commonwealth, Trade and Migration – Question (13 Mar 2017)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what is their assessment of future trade and migration from and to Commonwealth countries after the United Kingdom leaves the European Union.

Brexit: Commonwealth, Trade and Migration – Question (13 Mar 2017)

Baroness Berridge: I thank my noble friend the Minister for his Answer. Within the trade that was outlined, there are many British citizens of Commonwealth heritage who run businesses that trade incredibly effectively with those countries of heritage. Many want to see renewed opportunities for migration between the United Kingdom and those Commonwealth countries as free movement within the EU comes to an end….

Bilateral Trade: Sri Lanka – Question (28 Feb 2017)

Baroness Berridge: My Lords, I am sure that my noble friend the Minister will draw to the attention of fellow Commonwealth Trade Ministers the recent research which revealed that it is about 19% cheaper to trade within Commonwealth countries. But, as the noble Baroness, Lady Symons, outlined, could we please have an assurance that human rights will also be raised at the meeting? If not, we face the same…

Written Answers — Department for Communities and Local Government: Religious Hatred: Christianity (21 Feb 2017)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the case for a Christian hate crimes unit, additional to the Jewish and Muslim hate crimes units in the Department for Communities and Local Government.

Lay Magistrates – Question (20 Feb 2017)

Baroness Berridge: Statistics from the Ministry of Justice show that 10% of magistrates are from a black and minority ethnic background, but can my noble and learned friend the Minister outline whether there is a specific recruitment drive that also addresses the need for young people from those communities? When black and minority ethnic young people come before a youth justice panel, it is very important that…

Written Answers — Foreign and Commonwealth Office: Central African Republic: Politics and Government (1 Feb 2017)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the current security situation in the Central African Republic.

Written Answers — Foreign and Commonwealth Office: Central African Republic: Armed Conflict (1 Feb 2017)

Baroness Berridge: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of reports of a new armed militia group, 3R, operating in Cameroon and the Central African Republic border region; and of the capacity of that group, the weapons they possess, the impact on the distribution of aid in that region, and whether they control any territory in that border region.


A full list of Baroness Berridge’s contributions to debates, motions and questions in the House of Lords is available on They Work for You using this link, where you can subscribe to alerts of future contributions.