Today's news

May 30, 2002

Young Turks keep Blair flag flying
South Shields MP David Miliband, 36, has been appointed schools standards minister at the Department for Education and Skills. As head of the Downing Street Policy Unit, he was credited with devising the mantra "education, education, education", which defined prime minister Tony Blair’s time in opposition. Mr Miliband replaces Stephen Timms. Stephen Twigg was appointed junior minister for education in Mr Blair's reshuffle. (The Independent, Financial Times, The Guardian, Daily Mail, The Times, The Daily Telegraph)

Stand-off may result in few limits on cloning
A stand-off in the US Senate over legislation to govern human cloning could potentially leave the US with a more liberal stance on the controversial issue than those taken by other countries, including France and the UK. "It’s ironic that after all this debate, the US will probably be left with fewer restrictions on cloning than England," said Art Caplan, a bioethicist at the University of Pennsylvania. (Financial Times)

GM hens will lay life-saving eggs
American scientists have devised a way of breeding genetically-modified chickens able to produce insulin and other life-saving drugs in their eggs. (The Independent)

Exam board apologises after questions blunder
Britain’s largest exam board, AQA, was forced to apologise yesterday after it issued 40,000 students with a GCSE paper containing questions that they were not equipped to answer. It was the second exam error in as many days. (The Independent)

Sexist teachers hold back girls
Professor Janette Elwood of Queen's University, Belfast, has claimed that clever girls are often not entered for the most testing exams because their teachers perceive them to be less confident than equally able boys and are worried they will be upset if they fail. (The Independent)

Darkness of the dons
Steve Waters' new play lifts the lid on academic fallibility. (The Independent - Education)

Bacteria point way to gold
Bacteria may be used to find gold deposits, thanks to new research from scientists at Ohio State University. (Financial Times)

Scientists find 'the knowledge'
Researchers at Imperial College, London and Harvard University in the US have devised a method of finding the quickest route between two geographical points with the help of an etched glass chip and helium gas. (Financial Times)

Law student shot herself after trying to cheat
A law student killed herself after being arrested for armed robbery an inquest heard yesterday. Julie Wintersgill forced a cleaner at Swansea University to hand over cash and keys at gunpoint so she could doctor her exam results. (The Guardian, Daily Mail, The Times, The Daily Telegraph)

Pre-1970s smallpox jabs have warn off
Most adults who were vaccinated against smallpox as children before the disease was eradicated in the mid-1970s have probably lost their immunity, according to a study published in New Scientist. (The Daily Telegraph)

Catholics 'more likely to be obsessive'
Devout Roman Catholics are more likely to show signs of obsessive-compulsive disorder according to research at the University of Parma, Italy. (The Daily Telegraph)

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