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Success for access group

A project which aims to help disadvantaged Lothian pupils go on to higher education is attracting the interest of other parts of the UK and Europe.

The LEAPS (Lothian's Equal Access Programme for Schools) scheme is being closely monitored because of its success in reaching pupils who traditionally would not have considered university an option.

A new Pounds 250,000, two-year LEAPS programme was launched in Edinburgh this week with the signing of a "declaration of partnership" by the four Lothian councils, the three local universities and Queen Margaret College.

LEAPS grew out of the University Special Entrance (USE) initiative run by the former Lothian Region and Edinburgh University. Fifteen disadvantaged Lothian schools are being specifically targeted this time, although all schools will benefit from an extended student shadowing scheme and an annual pre-university summer school.

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