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Children get hands on in their campaign to save part of their school playing field

Parents and children at Oundle Primary near Peterborough have made a video to campaign against proposals which could mean the school loses use of the land.

Northamptonshire County Council is replacing the middle school with one primary to create a two tier system and says it'll leave too much land for the number of pupils and is looking at other uses for it.

The idea of disposing of school land is controversial but not unusual.

Between 2001 and 2010 the Government gave approval to change the use of 242 playing fields across the UK.

In the last five years there have been 103 earmarked, with the largest numbers seen in 2013 and 2014...where 61 were given approval to be disposed of.

Click below to watch a report from ITV News Anglia's Sarah Cooper

Pressure on places forces children to another school

Over a hundred children moved Credit: PA

Histon and Impington Parish Council have expressed concern over children at the local infant school being moved to a different site because of pressure on places.

They say many parents are unhappy that more than 100 children aged 7 and 8 at Histon and Impington Infant School will be taught in temporary classrooms half a mile away at the villages' junior school.


Norfolk school vandalised for the second time

Windows were smashed at the school Credit: ITV News Anglia

Parents and pupils at a primary school in Norfolk have taken matters into their own hands after the playground was vandalised for a second time.

The head teacher of North Walsham Junior School discovered vandals had broken windows and kicked in doors at the weekend.

The doors on the school's metal play shed were ripped off and all the toys thrown over the field.

Fence work was kicked in where the children can eat and have lunch outside and seating had been smashed, while there was glass allover the place.

Clare Fletcher looks over the area that was damaged by vandals. Credit: ITV News Anglia

"It was a lot of mess and the worst thing was the broken glass and I was really quite worried. We have spent a lot of money and time and energy to put together a really good play area for the children, so for it to be abused in this way it was soul destroying again."

– Clare Fletcher, Executive Head teacher of North Walsham Infant and Junior schools

Following an appeal on social media dozens of parents arrived to repair the damage in time for Monday morning.

Not enough is being done to improve school standards in Suffolk

Suffolk County Council has been criticised by Ofsted for being slow in helping schools improve standards.

A recent inspection found that while the council has made progress, it has no acted quickly enough to make significant improvements.

ITV News Anglia's Education Correspondent Elodie Harper spoke to Andrew Cook the East of England Director for Ofsted.

Click below to watch the interview in full.

Suffolk County Council 'fully committed' to improving standards

Suffolk County Council says it is 'fully committed' to making sure every child has the opportunity to attend a good or outstanding school in Suffolk.

In responding to a report by Ofsted - which looked at its arrangements for supporting school improvements - the council says 75 % of its schools are classed as good or outstanding.

Ofsted's report was critical of the council's progress, saying it has been 'too slow' to make improvements to school standards.

"I remain fully committed to ensuring we deliver the opportunity for every child to attend a good or outstanding school in Suffolk. Ofsted acknowledges that our vision and strategy are moving us in the right direction and there are some very positive points to take from their letter. Seventy five per cent of our schools in Suffolk are classed as good or outstanding and I am determined to continue with our good work so far in raising standards so we can achieve 100 %.”

– Cllr Lisa Chambers, Suffolk County Council's Cabinet member for education and schools

Visiting the authority in January, Ofsted acknowledged strengths and set out areas for improvements, including increasing school to school support and improve achievements for disadvantaged pupils.

“We have already implemented significant changes since the last Ofsted visit. Suffolk is an improving picture and Ofsted recognises this. We have closed the gap at key stage 1 and key stage 4 to within 1 per cent of national figures, an improvement of some 7 per cent. Educational standards are on the rise and we will ensure this sustainable progress and improvement continues.”

– Cllr Lisa Chambers


Report critical of Suffolk's schools - 'not enough being done to improve standards'

A damning report into education standards in Suffolk has found not enough is being done to turn around the county's struggling schools.

It's the latest in a series of reports from Ofsted criticising education in Suffolk.

Inspectors said the progress being made by Suffolk County Council was "too slow" and pupils' results were falling behind the national average.

There are now around 25 thousand children in the country who do not attend a good or outstanding school, particularly in Lowestoft and Ipswich.

Click below to watch a report by ITV News Anglia's Serena Sandhu.

Welsh rugby player to study for Masters degree at Cambridge University

Welsh rugby player Jamie Roberts is to study for a Masters degree in Medical Science and surgery at Cambridge University alongside his rugby duties.

Roberts has 69 caps for Wales and is already a qualified doctor after studying at Cardiff University.

"I'm also delighted and feel very privileged to have been accepted to study at Cambridge University and look forward to furthering my education part-time alongside my professional playing career. That balance in my life has served me well in the past."

– Jamie Roberts, Wales midfielder

Ofsted criticises Suffolk County Council for being too slow

Suffolk County Council is criticised by Ofsted Credit: ITV News Anglia

Suffolk County Council has been criticised by the education watchdog Ofsted for being slow in helping schools improve.

A recent inspection in January found while the council had made progress, it had not acted quickly enough to make significant improvements since a previous inspection last year.

Oftsed said too few pupils in the county attended a good or outstanding school, particularly in Lowestoft and Ipswich.

"25,000 pupils in Suffolk schools are not currently going to a good or better school. We found that the standard that pupils achieve at the end of primary school or secondary school are below average and most concerning for us is the disadvantaged pupils in secondary schools."

– Andrew Cook, Ofsted East of England Director

Schools in the East "struggling to break even" because of free meals

Free school meals were introduced eight months ago. Credit: ITV News Anglia

Eight months after free school meals were first offered to all infants, some teachers in the East say they're still not breaking even.

Others claim it's had an effect on the funding they receive for disadvantaged children.

The Department for Education says they've provided almost £185million, and Essex County Council has revealed there was an 800,000 shortfall in Government funding which was passed onto schools.

"I've got 79% of children taking part in this scheme at the moment, my target is 87%.

If I have 87% I would actually break even. I think it was one of these things that was rushed through.

It sounded so good at the time but the actual logistics of it all was very difficult for schools to manage."

– Sally Leung, Headteacher
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