Today's news

October 14, 2002

Cloning team looks to human embryos
Ian Wilmut, the leader of the team that cloned Dolly the sheep, is to plunge into uncharted scientific waters by trying to clone human embryos for research. He said his work at the Roslin Institute would not develop beyond the stage of a microscopic cluster of cells. (The Guardian)

Morris tells of turmoil
Education secretary Estelle Morris has spoken of her sleepless nights after the A-level chaos and the press campaign against her. In an interview, she says she was right not to resign. (The Guardian)

Six-week deadline to rescue A levels
Ken Boston, the new head of the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority, has told his officials and the exam boards they must come up with a new code of practice for marking next year’s A level and AS level exams by mid-November in order to avoid a repeat of the turmoil seen this summer. (The Independent)

Heads to demand refund of appeal charges
Head teachers of state and independent schools are joining forces to demand that exam boards refund the hundreds of thousands of pounds charged for considering appeals against A-level grades. (The Times)

University scramble after review
Thousands of students face a scramble for degree courses tomorrow after confirmation that their A-level papers were marked unfairly. The independent inquiry into the scandal is expected to find that as many as 10,000 pupils are affected. (The Daily Mail)

PFI in schools has lessons to learn
In what will be the most wide-ranging analysis of private-sector involvement in building and running schools, an independent review of the private-finance initiative by the Audit Commission is set to embarrass ministers by declaring that they still have a lot to learn. (The Times)

Battle of the bugs
Conservationists on the Galapagos Islands are awaiting the outcome of a daring experiment in biocontrol in which Australian ladybirds have been imported to take on cottony cushion scale insects, which have been attacking plants on the islands. (The Independent)

Pupils urged to inform on problem parents
Pupils as young as 13 are being encouraged to disclose sensitive information about their parents to the government to help discover why they might be failing at school. Data on problems such as drink and drug abuse are being gathered without the consent of parents by the Connexions service. (The Daily Telegraph) 

Tearaway excels on academic path
A black teenager thrown out of his inner-city for being “rude, disruptive and unmanageable” has become an outstanding pupil at a leading public school. The change was made possible by Trevor Phillips, a black Labour politician, who paid for the teenager to attend a £15,000-a-year school and built a television documentary around it. (The Daily Mail, The Daily Telegraph)

East coast rules business school rankings
US East coast business schools have topped the tables in The Financial Times’s latest business school ranking for the second year in a row. The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, and the two New York schools, Columbia and Stern, took the top three slots. (The Financial Times, includes special business schools supplement)

Scheme to raise aspirations to expand
The government will today announce an expansion of Excellence in Cities, its multimillion-pound scheme to tackle underachievement in inner-city schools. (The Guardian)

Stephen Ambrose, the bestselling historian of America’s second world war triumphs, has died, aged 66. (The Daily Telegraph, The Guardian, The Times)   

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