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The government has unveiled a package of measures to improve standards in inner city schools. ...
The government has unveiled a package of measures to improve standards in inner city schools.

There are a large number of measures aimed at 'shifting the focus from the institution to the individual', 'stretching every gifted pupil' and meeting special needs, according to education secretary David Blunkett.

The local education authorities involved are Tower Hamlets, Sheffield, Manchester, Slough, Bradford, Southwark, Birmingham, Knowsley, Camden and Hackney.

Knowsley MBC education director Peter Wylie welcomed the scheme: 'It puts together a series of comparatively unconnected initiatives in a way that connects up.' He said it needed to include all schools in the borough to be effective.

The measures include expansion of the specialist and beacon school programmes, smaller education action zones for rapid improvement of clusters of schools, and expansion of summer schools and after-school programmes. Bright children will have extra classes, 'world class tests' to stretch pupils will be introduced and there will be mentors for those who need them.

There will also be a low-cost home computer lease scheme.

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