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Multi-million pound engineering training centre to open

A new £5.8 million engineering training centre for the East Midlands is being opened today.

The £5.8m new engineering training centre opens today Credit: PA

West Nottinghamshire College hopes the centre will be a hub for vocational learning in the region, with the aim of developing in-demand skills in youngsters to help plug employment gaps across a number of sectors.


Loughborough University top for student life

Loughborough University offers the best quality of student life Credit: Ben Birchall/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Loughborough University offers the best quality of student life according to a recent survey.

The university scored highly in terms of student satisfaction, employment rates and social life - around 94 per cent of final year students find a job or carry on studying.

The institution also rated well in accommodation costs and social life.

The University of Nottingham and Nottingham Trent University also made it into the top thirty.

The poll was carried out as part of the annual Lloyds Bank Quality of Student Life survey, which uses data to rate universities on areas such as course satisfaction, accommodation costs, employment and earnings of graduates and social life.

Four parents ordered to pay £1,500 for child absences

Four parents of children at Solihull schools have been ordered to pay more than £1,500 for failing to ensure their children went to school.

One 15 year old pupil had clocked up a total of 76 unauthorised absences between March 3 and July 14 this year. Both parents were fined £135 and ordered to pay £150 costs plus a £20 victim surcharge - totalling £305 each.

The four parents all pleaded guilty at Birmingham Magistrates Court Credit: Google Maps

Another child had 20 unauthorised absences in just one month, between June 2 and July 11. Their parent was fined £75 and ordered to pay £75 towards costs, plus the £20 victim surcharge.

And another parent was ordered to pay a total of £766 after their child was absent 36 times between June 2 and July 15. They were fined £400, ordered to pay £326 in costs plus victim surcharge of £40.

All four parents appeared at Birmingham Magistrates Court on Wednesday, where they pleaded guilty.

Tomlinson new Birmingham Education Commissioner

A former chief inspector of schools has been charged with steering improvements to Birmingham's education system following the alleged "Trojan Horse" plot.

Sir Mike Tomlinson is the former chief inspector of schools Credit: PA

Sir Mike Tomlinson is to become education commissioner with responsibility for improving standards in the city's classrooms, Education Secretary Nicky Morgan said.

His appointment is a direct result of the fallout from the anonymous "Trojan Horse" letter, which alleged an extremist Muslim plot to seize control of several Birmingham schools was under way.

A damning report into those claims led by former anti-terror chief Peter Clarke and published in July, found "clear evidence" of a group of like-minded individuals working to support "extremist views" in classrooms.

That report, commissioned by Ms Morgan's predecessor Michael Gove, concluded there had been "co-ordinated, deliberate and sustained action, carried out by a number of associated individuals, to introduce an intolerant and aggressive Islamic ethos into a few schools in Birmingham".

However, it did not find any evidence of "terrorism, radicalisation or violent extremism in the schools of concern in Birmingham".

The appointment of experienced educationalist and former teacher Sir Mike, who was chief inspector from 2000 to 2002 and later chair of the Hackney Learning Trust where he helped improve the London borough's education standards, has been welcomed by Birmingham City Council.

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