§ Mr. Amess
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science (1) if he will place in the Library the correspondence between his Department and the National Union of Students concerning automatic membership of student unions; and if he will make a statement;
(2) what recent representations he has received from the National Union of Students regarding the automatic membership of student unions; and if he will make a statement.
[holding answer 2 December 1988]: The NUS has made no recent representations. The last exchange of correspondence between the NUS and Ministers on this subject followed a meeting which I held with the NUS on 29 February. This exchange preceded the announcement of the survey and I do not think that it would now be appropriate to place it in the Library.
§ Mr. Amess
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science (1) what was the total number of questionnaires for his Department's review of student unions(a) sent out and (b) returned, and what is the percentage of the latter to the former;
(2) how many questionnaires for his review of student unions were sent to (a) student unions, (b) institutions of higher and further education and (c) the National Union of Students; and if he will make a statement.
[holding answer 2 December 1988]: Questionnaires were issued to 70 institutions in Great Britain. Each institution received four copies but it was for each to determine, against the definition of a student union used for the survey, how many separately completed questionnaires to return. Institutions were invited to involve their local union(s) in completing the questionnaire but no questionnaires were issued direct to local unions for return to the Department. A copy was sent to the NUS for information.
By 1 December a total of 86 returns had been received from 68 institutions. Returns from the remaining two institutions are expected within a few days.
[holding answer of 2 December 1988]: The Department consults as appropriate, but does not negotiate, with the National Union of Students.