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'Don't be a Mug' school attendance campaign causes a stir

Is a council justified in telling parents 'not to be mugs' and make sure they don't take their children out of school in term time?

Many, including a mother of three, think East Sussex County Council is being patronising, to say the least.

The words are used in a high-profile campaign aimed at improving poor school attendance in the county. But critics say it's ill conceived and short-sighted.

Our reporter Andy Dickenson has been looking at both sides of the argument and speaks to mother Lara Stutchbury and Nathan Caine from the council.

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Headteachers lead protests over education cuts

Dozens of schools in Sussex have been staging demonstrations today against cuts in government funding.

Campaigners joined teachers to unfurl banners, detailing the money they say they'll lose under a new system of school budgets.

In Brighton and Hove, each school could be almost £200,000 worse off, that's nearly £200 per pupil.

The group Save Our Schools claims there'll be bigger classes and fewer staff.

But the government says it's putting record amounts of cash into education, as Malcolm Shaw reports.

Suspect found for school arson

The shed full of toys were destroyed in the arson attack. Credit: ITV news

A suspect has now been found for the arson attack which took place at a special education school in Bicester.

The incident happened at Bardwell school at around 11pm on New Years day when a shed full of toys was set alight.

Pupils & teachers call for 'fairer funding' for schools

Pupils and teachers from West Sussex have taken their fight for fairer school funding to Downing Street.

Campaigners say schools in their area receive £44 million pounds less than the national average. Some headteachers say they face having to lose staff and increase the number of children in their classes. They're calling for £20 million pounds to be made available.

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New CCTV patrol to target parents who flout school zigzag rules

Children are being put at risk by people who park their cars on zigzag lines Credit: ITV News

A local authority is introducing new measures to clampdown on drivers who flout the rules by parking on zigzag lines outside schools.

From September, Southampton City Council's new CCTV-equipped car will patrol the city targeting vehicles that stop unlawfully outside school entrances.

Parents and teachers are set to welcome the move, introduced following complaints and concerns that children's safety is being put at risk by people who park irresponsibly.

The council will also be using the CCTV car to clampdown on illegal parking at bus stops.

We work closely with schools and the police to tackle irresponsible parking, but the problem tends to return once patrols have left the area. We are committed to improving road safety around our schools and at bus stops and we hope the presence of the highly visible camera car will act as a deterrent to those who break the rules and encourage them to park safely and legally.

This initiative is about stopping dangerous parking not about collecting fines so our message is clear - park legally and responsibly and you won’t face a fixed penalty notice.”

– Councillor Jacqui Rayment, Southampton City Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment and Transport

Schools Minister: no backing down on academies

There will be no backing down - that's the message from the government on plans to force every school in England to become an academy.

Pressure has been mounting for the government to offer concessions to appease backbenchers and Tory councils angry about the plans. Today, David Cameron again told the House of Commons he would not give ground.

As disquiet mounts, the Schools Minister Nick Gibb - who is also MP for Bognor Regis and Littlehampton - sat down with our Social Affairs Correspondent Christine Alsford to talk about the proposals - and explain why he believes that making every school opt out of local authority control will raise standards.

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