Update: 12:40

September 12, 2002

Most mature students enrol in UK
Undergraduate study is attracting more mature students than ever, with almost 6 per cent more over 21s accepted for places this year than last. The latest figures from the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service show the greatest increase occurred in the 21 to 24 age bracket, with over 20 per cent more Scottish and 13 per cent more Northern Irish applicants.

Piatt to help draft higher education white paper
Wendy Piatt, a leading new Labour proponent of higher tuition fees and interest rates on student loans has been seconded to help the government develop its white paper on higher education. Dr Piatt, a senior research fellow at the centre-left Institute for Public Policy Research, will join the Department for Education and Employment to help with the white paper, due in November.

Third-largest teaching union leader to retire
The leader of the the Association of Teachers and Lecturers, the third-largest teaching union, is to retire three years early. General secretary Peter Smith, aged 62, is to go at the end of the year, although he had been due to leave in 2005. He said 30 years in the same organisation was "long enough".

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