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Brighton and Hove see 94% kids accepted into schools

More than 94% of schoolchildren have been offered their preferred schools in this year's primary schools admission.

The number of applications received by Brighton and Hove City Council for a primary school places has gone up by 170 since last academic year.

The council have said that where preferred choices have not been met, parents have been offered a place at the nearest school that has places.

I’m pleased that we have been able to offer such a high proportion of parents one of their preferred schools, particularly given that the number of applications is up by 170 this year.”

– Pinaki Ghoshal, council’s director of children’s services

89% children get school place in Oxford

Nearly 90% of children of children in Oxford have been offered a place at their first choice of school.

This is despite a large increase in the number of applications received by the council - with an extra 209 children attaining first preference places compared with 2013.

Cabinet Member for Children, Education and Families Melinda Tilley said: “We are pleased to be able to offer first-preference places to the overwhelming majority of children.

"Oxfordshire has a strong record in this respect and compares favourably with other parts of the country, but like many other areas we are expecting the school age population to continue to rise in the coming years."

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Parents find out if children have got first choice school

Parents are finding out today if their children have been given their first choice of primary school.

Thousands of new places have been created to meet a growing demand.

Today is the first national "offer day" when admissions have been coordinated by all 152 local authorities in England at the same time.

An increase in birth rate combined with an influx of migrants in some areas has driven an increase in the number of four and five-year-olds starting school.

There is concern that more children will miss out on their first choice place because of this.

The Department of Education has given local authorities £5 billion to create more primary school places, with a further £2.35 billion made available between 2015 and 2017.

Meet the Knights who go 'Ouch!' in the Medieval Fight Club

Prepare yourselves because as hobbies go they don't come much wilder or more brutal than this.

What young boy, or girl perhaps, hasn't pretended to be a brave Knight fighting for King, Queen and Country? Well, a group of grown up men in Sussex have taken that dream a step further - and they're not pulling their punches.

Andy Dickenson reports and speaks to Nikolaj Malnac, chairman of Battle Heritage GB, knight Gwilym Rees and British team captain Mark Taylor.

Andy Dickenson reports.

National

Flagship free school due to shut

Discovery New School in Crawley, West Sussex, is due to close its doors today amid concerns about the standard of education it offered - it is the first time this kind of action has been taken.

Read more: Failing free school told to close

Discovery New School in Crawley, West Sussex, is due to close its doors today.
Discovery New School in Crawley, West Sussex, is due to close its doors today. Credit: Chris Ison/PA Wire

The school has around 70 pupils who will all have to find new schools.

Explaining the decision when the closure was announced, schools minister Lord Nash said that "none of the school's teachers were delivering good lessons and all were still consistently inadequate or required improvement".

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Free school closes because of poor performance

The first free school in the country has been closed down for good because of poor performance - less than three years after opening. The pioneering Discovery New School at Crawley in Sussex was set up to allow parents to choose a Montessori style education.

Free schools are a flagship government education policy that allows schools to operate outside of local authority contol using public money. But this school's troubled path has raised many questions.

The founders of the school say Ofsted - not them - should be blamed. Our Social Affairs Correspondent Christine Alsford has this exclusive report.

In Ben's memory: Don't be a victim of school bus bullies

Ben Vodden
Ben Vodden who died after being bullied on a school bus Credit: PA Images

The father of a schoolboy who hanged himself after being bullied relentlessly on the school bus has called for urgent support for young victims.

Paul Vodden's 11-year-old son Ben endured name calling, gesturing and swearing on school bus journeys.

The merciless bullying became too much for Ben - a pupil at Tanbridge House School in Horsham, Sussex - and he hanged himself in his bedroom in December 2006.

Since then, Mr Vodden has attempted to tackle the issues surrounding bullying on school bus journeys and has been on a crusade to help others.

He has now produced a report, with funding from the anti-bullying charity, the Diana Award, which highlights how bullying often starts on the school bus.

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