Archives for July 4th, 2000

COUNCILS URGED TO THINK E-GOVERNMENT

Headlines, PublicNet: 4 July, 2000

The Department for Environment Transport and Regions wants views from councils on setting targets for e-Government. The 17 page consultation document is in reality a check list of issues to prompt thinking about how to deliver services electronically. Some councils are early adopters of technology, but many are at the other end of the league table.The document makes it clear that introducing e-Government is much more than automating existing services. Departments within councils currently deliver their own services, but the modernising agenda demands that the focus is shifted to the citizen and that the advances of modern technology are used to deliver citizen-centred services. The approach advocated is grouping around ‘life events’. A key requirement is a single access to all services provided by a council and joining up services within the council is seen as a major challenge.

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JURY STILL OUT ON EDUCATION ACTION ZONES

Headlines, PublicNet: 4 July, 2000

Two years into the Education Action Zone initiative the first results give grounds for optimism, but leave many questions unanswered. The findings show that pupils gaining 5 or more GCSE Grade A-Cs improved at twice the rate of schools outside the zones. There was also a 4% improvement above the national average for Maths (Key stage 2). Levels of attendance improved in some, but not in all zones.The first 25 zones were approved in June 1998 as test beds for innovation to drive up educational standards. A key feature of the zones is the involvement of the private sector. A zone is made of about 20 primary, secondary and special schools in a local area. It is run by a forum of businesses, schools, parents and the local education authority.

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