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This week

Waiting list data was 'rubbished'

- The Scottish government went out of its way to "rubbish" the waiting list survey done by Colleges Scotland, according to Labour MSP Neil Findlay. Documents obtained by Mr Findlay under Freedom of Information laws showed officials set out to "discredit" the survey, which showed thousands of prospective students missing out on a place at college, he claimed. The government's final report into the issue said only 4 per cent of students on waiting lists for the seven colleges surveyed were still seeking a place.

New head for George Heriot's

- Gareth Doodes, head of Milton Abbey School in Dorset, has been appointed principal of George Heriot's School in Edinburgh. He will succeed Alistair Hector, who retires in December after 16 years in post. Mr Doodes is a graduate of the University of St Andrews and the University of Cambridge, and taught at Taunton School and Oakham School.

Tobacco-free Scotland plan

- The Scottish government has set out its strategy for a tobacco-free nation which it hopes will see less than 5 per cent of the population choosing to smoke by 2034. The strategy will include anti-smoking schemes for young people, standardised packaging and better services to help people quit and targets to cut children's exposure to second-hand smoke.

Better education for offenders

- The Scottish Prison Service and Education Scotland will work together to improve learning and education for young people at Polmont Young Offenders Institution. The project will be based on Curriculum for Excellence and developing skills for learning, life and work. Brigadier Hugh Monro, Chief Inspector of Prisons for Scotland, said: "Having criticised Polmont in the past for poor motivation of young offenders to attend education or vocational training, I am delighted that there are plans to create a secure learning environment."

Cash boost for minority groups

- Grassroots projects supporting Scotland's minority ethnic communities will benefit from a #163;100,000 investment, the charity roshni has announced. Projects ranging from afternoon clubs to get children off the streets to social clubs for the elderly have until the end of July to apply to the Scottish Ethnic Communities Fund for up to #163;10,000 each. Ali Khan, roshni's executive chair, said the fund had the potential to create permanent social change.

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