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Scots dividend from people's lottery

Decisions about diverting more cash from the "People's Lottery" into education will eventually fall to a parliament in Edinburgh.

The Government aims to establish a Pounds 1 billion opportunities fund to boost education and technology projects. There are also plans for a National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts to foster talent and creativity.

The education part of the fund will focus on providing out-of-hours activities to help raise pupil achievement and on improving teachers' and librarians' skills in applying new technology to the classroom.

Proposals envisage after-school clubs providing homework, drama, sport and team games, structured play and special interest groups. "By 2001 we want high quality programmes of regular learning activities established in at least half of all secondary and a quarter of all primary schools," the White Paper states. Scottish Office ministers are known to be interested in this particular proposal.

The plans envisage bids for cash from schools, local authorities, local enterprise companies, voluntary organisations, libraries and a combination of these. Lottery funding will be for three to five years.

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