Thursday, February 09, 2012

Sack paid advisers and get them to work for nothing

Education: Gypsy, Roma and Traveller Children

Asked by Lord Avebury

To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they will place in the Library of the House a copy of the equality impact assessment with regard to the ending of the two specialist consultancy services provided to the Department for Education by Arthur Ivatts OBE and Margaret Wood, on the education of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller children.[HL15202]

7 Feb 2012 : Column WA37

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Schools (Lord Hill of Oareford): The Department for Education advocates the use of equality impact assessments when developing new policies or making significant changes to existing ones, but would not routinely use them when ending consultancy contracts. No formal equality impact assessments were drawn up with regard to ending the contracts of Arthur Ivatts OBE and Margaret Wood 21 days earlier than originally planned.

The department is very grateful to Arthur Ivatts and Margaret Wood for the support which they have provided on the education of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller pupils. The department continues to seek their advice on an informal basis, through its regular meetings with the Advisory Council on the Education of Romany and Other Travellers and through the Gypsy, Roma and Traveller education stakeholder group.

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