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Internet insights

WHEN the large issues of school life such as budget, staffing, curriculum and special needs provision are being decided, apparently trivial "spanners in the works" are often overlooked.

The local bus timetable, for example, can have a disproportionate impact on educational choices at 16-plus or on the recruitment of Year 7 pupils.

Equally, if young children cannot walk safely to school, a headteacher's efforts to meet attendance targets can be thwarted.

The Government's social exclusion unit might not be the most obvious place to look for insights on these issues, but its website provides some of the latest thinking on school transport.

This year's report Making the Connections can be read online at: www.socialexclusionunit.gov.ukpublicationsreportshtmltransportfinal.

Geography and sociology teachers will want to gut it for source material but politically astute school managers will also find much to interest them. Did you know, for example, that the Government is committed to spending several million pounds of the transport budget on areas with high levels of child-pedestrian casualties?

Email suggestions on future Internet Insights to Sam Saunders at J.P.Saunders@leeds.ac.uk

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