Sir Julian Lewis: One reason why this Minister has been in his post so long is that successive Prime Ministers have judged him to be rather good at his job. For the benefit of the House, can he confirm that the civil servants who discovered the mistake made it known to Ministers at the first possible opportunity, and that Ministers made it known to the public at the first possible opportunity? Does that not reflect credit on our parliamentary democratic system?
[The Minister for Schools (Nick Gibb): I am grateful to my right hon. Friend for his kind comments. He is absolutely right: as soon as we knew about the error, I wanted to make sure that we were doing everything we could to rectify it and find a solution to the problem that officials and the Department had caused. That was my approach, and that is why we recalculated the whole of the national funding formula notional allocations as soon as we could and published that detail on 6 October.]