There can be few in education who do not refer to the Department for Education and Employment's statistical publications. Most will not usually do so expecting a jolly good laugh, and a truly spectacular own goal by the DFEE.
I commend table 4 (pages 26-30) of the 1995 DFEE Statistics of Education, Schools in England to readers and, in particular, the column showing the number of pupils in all grant-maintained schools in each term. Get a copy soon: it's sure to become a collectors' item.
There is something dreadfully wrong with the data, check your local area or others known to you. The one I particularly like refers to the Isles of Scilly.
The total school population of these delightful islands is 183. None the less, according to the DFEE, among the Atlantic-lashed granite cottages, farms, and guest houses there are 14,362 pupils in grant-maintained schools.
You wouldn't be able to print what the DFEE official responsible said when I rang him.
PETER GALE 41 Barnes View Sunderland