Extra-curricular inactivity

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Shortages of funds and teaching time are hampering schools' efforts to boost pupils' academic performance through extra-curricular activities. A survey of 62 London schools by Education Extra, the foundation for after- school activities, such as sports, pastimes and even homework clubs, revealed 90 per cent of secondaries and 80 per cent of primaries hoping to increase their provision could not do so because staff were already overworked.

The majority also reported serious problems funding these activities despite believing they were vital to students' success.

The findings come a week after government-backed research indicated after- school clubs were as effective as homework in helping children achieve in the classroom.

Capital Gains, pounds 3.50 from Education Extra, 17 Old Ford Road, London E2 9PL. Telephone 0181-983 1061.