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Monday, 30 April, 2001, 19:36 GMT 20:36 UK
Educating on the issues
Mike Baker on education issues
BBC's education correspondent Mike Baker looks at the main issues of debate in education.

Teacher shortages

The lack of teachers in many schools throughout the UK has been at the forefront of the education debate in recent months. In some cases the school week has been shortened and schools have been forced to recruit teachers from abroad for certain subjects. A major task for the new government will not only be teacher recruitment but teacher retention.

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Funding

Many schools in the UK are now funded directly from government. They are now responsible for making that budget stretch across all the needs of the individual school and it's pupils. The role of the local education authority has changed but some argue that LEA's still have a role in monitoring and support.

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University education

The cost of going to university is now higher than ever. Students no longer receive grants and are responsible for paying their own tuition fees. It means that many graduates are leaving college with thousands of pounds of debt. But who should foot the bill, the taxpayer or the student?

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Secondary schools

"An end to the bog standard comprehensive" was one statement from government that caused ill feeling among teachers, parents and students alike during the last parliament. There are currently secondary schools, grammar schools and comprehensive schools throughout the country - can and should all these be replaced by one type of school for all?

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