Headlines: June 27th, 2002

More than 500 schools across England are set to work together through a system of networks or partnerships which will see them learning from one another, promoting innovation and sharing best practice.The project, jointly funded by National College for School Leadership and the Department for Education and Skills, involves 48 groups of schools working together with other educational bodies such as education authorities, universities and community partners. Each network will receive up to 50,000 pounds a year in matched funding over three years.

The aim is to get groups of schools working together for the benefit both one another and the whole education system.

By bringing schools together they will be able to share ideas, and the best practice displayed by the most innovative schools will become standard practice for all schools.

The scheme has also inspired a wide range of proposals. A partnership of schools in the Dorchester area plan to introduce an Early Intervention programme aimed at identifying the youngest children at risk of being excluded from school.

A team of professionals will then work with the children by taking them out of the classroom and looking at their social and emotional skills as well as working with parents.

A London network is keen to use ICT to cut down on paperwork and to share knowledge about professional practice