News in Brief

17th July 2009 at 01:00
This week's big education stories

Cash for classrooms

Schools in areas facing "exceptional" demand for school places will receive Pounds 200 million to build new permanent classrooms - but the cash won't be available for another two years. Local authorities that face a 15 per cent growth in four and five-year-old numbers between September 2008 and 2011 will be eligible. They have just four weeks to bid for the funding and allocations will be made in September. Funding will be released in 2010-11.

TES delays possible

Royal Mail strike action in parts of Leamington Spa, Edinburgh, Cowdenbeath, Grangemouth, Alloa, Irvine, London, Basildon, Thetford and Bristol on July 17 could delay delivery of some subscription copies of The TES. We apologise for any inconvenience to readers who may be affected.

Admissions gripes up

Complaints about school admissions have soared, with more than 1,400 registered in the last year, according to the Local Government Ombudsman. In its annual report for 2008-09, the Ombudsman said it had seen a 50 per cent increase since the Government introduced the new admissions and appeals code. The report said that in a "substantial" number of cases, investigators found "significant fault" with schools' handling of admissions applications or appeals, and in some cases, the new statutory codes had been breached.

Six more join BSF

Six more local authorities have been given the go-ahead to join the Building Schools for the Future programme: Barnet, Bolton, Hampshire, Peterborough, Sunderland and Wigan. There will now be a series of "rolling starts" for 70 councils yet to join BSF. Six new local authority projects will join the programme every three months in 2009-10.

UCUNUT agreement

The report "NUT deal with FE union creates a half-million `force to be reckoned with'" (The TES, July 3) incorrectly stated that the University and College Union would represent teachers in sixth forms. The agreement actually provides for the NUT to continue, as now, to represent sixth form teachers in sixth form colleges and schools with sixth forms. UCU will continue to represent teachers in HE, FE and adult and continuing education colleges.

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