Pregnant pause

The Committee of Vice-Chancellors and Principals has begun a travelling roadshow promoting best practice in widening access, based on 11 examples from England, four from Scotland and one from Wales. Scots delegates were happy to debate their home-grown products last week while those at the Northern Ireland seminar were reportedly quite phlegmatic about the lack of local examples. But anticipated Welsh reaction to a seminar on "case studies from England" had led to its being renamed "case studies from elsewhere".

One Scottish example was a "pre-university summer school" at Glasgow University. David Hamilton of Glasgow's education department said there had been an investigation more than a decade ago into why students from non-traditional backgrounds had dropped out. The first three to be interviewed were male and had left because their girlfriends were pregnant. For "a manic half hour" before it was discovered that this was not a trend, there were hopes of winning massive summer school sponsorship from the London Rubber Company.

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