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Minister rejects English approach

There will be no Welsh equivalent of the recent English Green Paper, because schools' futures have already been set out in the Better Wales paper, approved by the Welsh Assembly in May 2000.

According to First Minister Rhodri Morgan, proposals in the English Green Paper for writing off student loans of teacher-trainees will be mirrored in Wales, though the subject areas targeted may be different and may include Welsh-medium and Welsh language teaching.

However the proposals for settingup specialist schools, which have been seen as an erosion of the comprehensive principle, will not be replicated, said Mr Morgan.

Education minister Jane Davidson said: "The focus of the National Assembly is on local schools that offer the widest opportunities for their children. We could not contemplate a situation where specialisms are concentrated too narrowly."

This week Ms Davidson is visiting Ireland to discuss its approach to education and training.

Brian Morgan

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