Latest UK news

July 6, 2001

Education minister grilled about fees
MPs quizzed higher education minister Margaret Hodge yesterday about further and higher education funding and university tuition fees. Ms Hodge said there would be an announcement soon about financial support for further education students. She also said there was no evidence that university tuition fees deterred poorer students.

Action zones get more GCSE passes
The government’s drive to widen participation in higher education got a boost today with the publication of the annual report on education action zones. The report shows that school pupils in EAZs were more likely to achieve GCSE or GNVQ passes. The government has said that improvement in secondary schools is key to widening participation in post-16 education.

Research into fatal diseases gets new centre
The Queen was today opening a clinical research facility that aims to discover new ways of treating fatal diseases. The £3 million Wellcome Trust Clinical Research Facility at the Western General Hospital in Edinburgh is one of five clinical research facilities being funded by the Wellcome Trust in a £16 million investment programme. Other units will open shortly in Manchester, Birmingham, Southampton and Cambridge.

Synod assesses impact of poverty
Religious leaders were discussing the link between poverty and ill-health at a gathering of the Church of England’s governing body today. The General Synod in York was being asked to back a series of hard-hitting reports on the effects of low incomes. Newcastle University academic Nicholas Sagovsky is calling for churches to press the government to commission independent research to pinpoint minimum income needs.

Horse with pacemaker gives birth
A pregnant horse that was fitted with a pacemaker in a ground-breaking operation has given birth at the Royal Veterinary College in North Mymms, Hertfordshire. Xena, a seven-year-old mare, underwent surgery in February and last night she gave birth to a healthy colt.

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