Today's news

January 6, 2003

Brown told to find money to avoid top-up fees
Gordon Brown will come under pressure this week to back his opposition to top-up tuition fees for students with a big increase in university funding. A final draft of the government's white paper on higher education reform is circulating among senior ministers before an expected cabinet decision next week. Sources told The Times yesterday that agreement had been reached on most issues and that the white paper represented the most radical rethink of any Labour education policy since Tony Blair came to power. The document, which has already been delayed three times, is expected to be made public by the end of this month. The last-minute horsetrading came to light as backbench Labour MPs increased pressure on the government not to introduce top-up fees. The MPs fear a backlash from voters who object to a sharp increase in student debt.

Statesman Jenkins dies at 82
Lord Jenkins of Hillhead, the former Labour home secretary and chancellor, died suddenly yesterday morning at the age of 82. Roy Jenkins, will be best remembered for his attempt to "break the mould" by leaving Labour to form the Social Democratic Party in 1981. But his legacy reaches far wider than Westminster. He was chancellor of Oxford University, president of the European Commission and a prodigious author, most recently with an acclaimed biography of Sir Winston Churchill.
(Times, Daily Telegraph, Financial Times, Guardian, Independent)

Lord knows who will be Oxford chancellor
The death of Lord Jenkins of Hillhead will have repercussions for Oxford University, of which he was the long-serving chancellor. The post now falls open for the first time since 1987, when Jenkins beat the historian Lord Blake and Edward Heath in  a hotly contested election.
(Daily Telegraph)

RCN general secretary in the spotlight
Beverley Malone, general secretary of the Royal College of Nursing is interviewed about improving the lot of her profession and changing the conservative world of nursing.

Lessons on paying for higher education
Guardian writers visit three universities - the University of Buckingham here, the University of California, Berkeley, in the US and the University of Technology, Sydney, in Australia - to see what their experience can offer the debate about the future of university education in the UK.

Scientists track down secret of the gallop
In the latest issue of the journal Nature , a British team announces that it has at last found out how horses can gallop so fast: they rely on catapult-like properties in their biceps. The analysis by Dr Alan Wilson, of the Structure and Motion Lab at the Royal Veterinary College in Hatfield, and colleagues shows that the horse's ordinary, non-elastic leg muscles are too weak and too slow to carry out this task.
(Daily Telegraph)

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