SCHOOLS will be forced to jump two separate lottery hurdles if they want extra cash for after-hours sport.
As 90 secondaries in five authorities begin the first phase of the repeatedly relaunched sports co-ordinator scheme, part-funded by the sports lottery, talks about a top-up scheme are continuing between the Scottish Sports Council and the New Opportunities Fund.
Secondaries, and possibly primaries, will be able to tap into the fund's allocation for out of school learning to cover teacher time and the cost of opening facilities such as pools and halls.
The sports council believes the shortfall in sports halls could be halved overnight if schools extended their hours.
To answer criticism that the one day a week put in by the new co-ordinators is inadequate, applications for extra time can also be made to the fund.
David Campbell, the fund's Scottish executive member, told last week's Scottish School Sports conference in Livingston that New Opportunities was "not just about homework clubs" and appealed for applications from projects which motivate children and build self-esteem.
Sporting schemes which name individual schools and favour disadvantaged areas will be considered for up to three years. Applications to the pound;20.7 million out of hours learning fund have to be submitted by September 2000. Projects begin the year after.
Some of the money that was top-sliced from the lottery's sports cash to support the New Opportunities Fund, created by Tony Blair's Labour administration, will therefore come back into sport. Mr Campbell also said that school sport could benefit from the pound;30 million healthy living centres lottery fund.