§ Rob Marris
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills if he will list, broken down by region, the(a) firms and (b) companies taking part in Employer Training Pilots; and how much public funding each of them has received in (i) 2001–02,(ii) 2002–03 and (iii) 2003. 
§ Mr. Ivan Lewis
As the Employer Training Pilots did not commence until September 2002, no public funding was given to employers during 2001–02. Since September 2002 over 6,000 employers have signed up for the pilots. Details of funding paid to participating employers is not held centrally, but by the local Learning and Skills Councils operating the pilots, and the information cannot be collated to the level of detail requested without incurring disproportionate cost. I have, however, asked Mark Haysom, the Learning and Skills Council's Chief Executive, to write to the hon. Gentleman with details of the total amounts of public funding paid to or on behalf of participating employers under the Employer Training Pilots in each of the pilot areas, and the names of participating businesses. A copy of his reply will also be placed in the House of Commons Library.
§ Rob Marris
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what the success rate as defined by his Department is for Employer Training Pilots; and if he will make a statement. 
§ Mr. Ivan Lewis
The Employer Training Pilots were set up in September 2002 and will run until August 2005. They are testing the effectiveness of a range of measures designed to increase employer-based training for low-skilled employees, resulting in the acquisition of basic skills or level 2 qualifications. An evaluation report on310W the first year of the pilots has been produced for DIES by the Institute for Employment Studies. These interim findings show that at the end of August 2003:
- there were over 3,000 employers and 14,000 learners registered as taking part, with more in the process of starting;
- more than two in five employers engaged with the ETPs have had no previous involvement with government agencies such as the Learning and Skills Councils or Business Links;
- ETP learners tend to be aged between 26 and 45, in full-time low-skilled jobs, and earn an average of £6 an hour. Over half of the learners were female;
- both employers and employees were expressing high levels of satisfaction with the programme.
At this interim stage it is too early to draw any definitive conclusions about the pilots and the second year will be used to explore a number of issues in more depth; these include the numbers achieving qualifications, which elements of the pilots are most attractive to employers and employees, and the longer term impact of the training on both businesses and individuals.
The first year evaluation report was published in December 2003 and is available on the DfES website. A copy is also being placed in the House of Commons Library.