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Two more charged over finances at Bradford free school

A former director of finance and a former head of department at a flagship free school in Bradford have been charged with fraud offences.

Daud Khan, former finance director at Kings Science Academy is charged with two offences of fraud by abuse of position and three of false accounting.

Shabana Hussain faces one charge of fraud by abuse of position and one of acquiring criminal property. They will appear at Leeds Magistrates’ Court shortly.

Former princial Sajid Hussain Raza was charged last week with three offences of fraud by abuse of position, three offences of false accounting, two offences of obtaining a money transfer by deception, and one offence of fraud by false representation. He will also appear at Leeds Magistrates’ Court shortly.

Scarborough to get new university campus

Scarborough is to get a new university campus as part of a £45 million scheme announced today by Coventry University.

Artist's impression of new campus

The campus - an expansion of Coventry - will include a technical college, a sports village and student accommodation. It is due to open in September 2016 and is expected to generate £1 billion for the local economy over the next decade.

The scheme is being developed through a partnership with Scarborough Borough Council and local businesses and is aimed at addressing the employment and skill needs of the local community, as well as attracting students from all over the country and overseas to come and study there.

Coventry University are initially investing more than £12m into their education and learning facilities, with ambitions to expand the capacity of the universe campus to cater for in excess of 5,000 students over time.

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University of Coventry launches Scarborough campus

A new university campus will be unveiled in Scarborough as part of a £45 million scheme announced today by Coventry University.

Artist Impression

The campus - an expansion of Coventry - will include a technical college, a sports village and student accommodation.

The site is due to open in September 2016 and is expected to generate £1 billion for the local economy over the next decade.

Dolly Parton backed reading scheme faces axe

A reading scheme for children in Rotherham backed by country and western star Dolly Parton is facing the axe after the local council pulled its financial support.

Dolly Parton launched the Imagination Library eight years ago

The Imagination Library was launched eight years ago to encourage under five-year-olds to read by sending them a free book every month. Rotherham Council is blaming government cuts for its decision to withdraw £400,000 funding.

A spokesman for Dolly Parton said she was disappointed with the decision.

Former academy principal charged with fraud

The founder and principal of a flagship free school in Bradford has been charged with fraud and other offences.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said Sajid Hussain Raza has been charged with offences which relate to his involvement with the Kings Science Academy.

Raza was arrested last year following an investigation into the school, which was visited by Prime Minister David Cameron in 2012.

The CPS said it had authorised West Yorkshire Police to charge him with three offences of fraud by abuse of position, three offences of false accounting, two offences of obtaining a money transfer by deception, and one offence of fraud by false representation.

Julian Briggs, reviewing lawyer at CPS Yorkshire and Humberside's complex casework unit, said: "The Crown Prosecution Service has been working closely with West Yorkshire Police in connection with this case.

"Having carefully considered all of the evidence presented to us, we have concluded that there is sufficient evidence to charge Sajid Hussain Raza (principal) with a range of offences relating to his involvement with the Kings Science Academy, Bradford, and that it is in the public interest to do so.

"Accordingly, I have authorised West Yorkshire Police to charge Sajid Hussain Raza with three offences of fraud by abuse of position, three offences of false accounting, two offences of obtaining a money transfer by deception, and one offence of fraud by false representation. He will first appear at Leeds Magistrates' Court shortly.

"This defendant has now been charged with serious criminal offences and has the right to a fair trial. It is extremely important that there should be no reporting, commentary or sharing of information online which could in any way prejudice these proceedings."

The academy was one of the first free schools to open in September 2011. It was set up by Mr Raza and praised by Mr Cameron on his visit in March 2012.

West Yorkshire Police said Raza, 42, of Spring Gardens Road, Bradford, has been released on bail and will appear at Leeds Magistrates' Court on a date yet to be fixed.

The force said the charges relate to financial matters at the school between April and August 2011.

'Dementia Friends' to visit schools in awareness campaign

The Alzheimer's Society are going into schools across our region to recruit so-called Dementia Friends. These are people who know about the condition and are able to offer help and support to those who are receiving treatment for the illness.

The campaign hopes to educate more young people about the signs and symptoms of dementia - as figures show more and more of us will be diagnosed with the condition over the next decade.

It comes as the government pledges to increase funding to research the condition. Jon Hill reports:

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Top teen author visits students for World Book Day

Award-winning author of teen thrillers James Dawson visited a school in Leeds this week to mark World Book Day.

James Dawson with students at The Grammar School at Leeds

His latest novel, Under My Skin, which is a modern take on the classic Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde story, was released today and he spoke yesterday to students at The Grammar School at Leeds about it.

It is a feminist teenage fiction novel concerning the tug of war for Sally’s body. I have given darkness a character of its own.

– James Dawson, author

Under My Skin is told from the perspective of a teenage girl, and Dawson championed feminist issues during his talk, praising role models like author Malorie Blackman, actor Emma Watson, Olympian Jessica Ennis Hill and he youngest ever Nobel Peace Prize winner and campaigner for girls’ education, Malala Yousafzai.

The students thoroughly enjoyed James’s entertaining and thought-provoking talk. I think it is important to promote a love of reading and it was wonderful to hear James address an issue which is important in society today.

– Judith Kerr, Deputy Head of English at GSAL

Doncaster school wins World Book Day award

A school in Doncaster has won the first world book day award for a video they produced.

Hexthorpe Primary will receive £10,000 of books for its school library from American author James Patterson.

A school in Bourne in Lincolnshire also won £3,000 after finishing second.

Click here to see the winning video entry

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