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Quango hopefuls fancy further education

MORE people are interested in helping further education than the environment or tourism. That is one way of understanding why 7 per cent of inquiries about serving on a Scottish quango have mentioned the Scottish Further Education Council, but only 6 per cent the Scottish Environment Protection Agency and 5 per cent the Scottish Tourist Board.

On the other hand, the level of interest may be because there are 15 vacancies on the FE funding council. Other quangos have only a handful of vacancies to fill.

About 7,500 people have so far responded to the Government's Play a Part in Scotland campaign. About a third of these have expressed further interest in joining a particular quango. Most popular are the health boards, followed by Scottish Homes, with the FE funding council in third place.

The council, which will take over financing of the 43 colleges from the Scottish Office Education and Industry Department, is among 13 education quangos and five research institutes. The list is: National Board for Nursing, Midwifery and Health Visiting, Scottish Children's Reporter Administration, Scottish Community Education Council, Scottish Further Education Unit, Scottish Higher Education Funding Council, Scottish Qualifications Council, Children's Panel Advisory Committee, General Teaching Council, Scottish Consultative Council on the Curriculum, Scottish Police College, Scottish Studentship Selection Committee, Health Education Board for Scotland and the Scottish Council for Postgraduate Medical and Dental Education.

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