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Middlesbrough council to discuss "extremely prevalent" child exploitation

Middlesbrough Council's Executive Committee will meet today to discuss a recent report in which the scale of child sexual exploitation in the town was described as "extremely prevalent".

It follows research with schools across Middlesbrough to examine the problem. The assistant head teacher of one secondary described the sexual exploitation of children in the Teesside town as a "growth industry" which leaves primary school children as well as older children at risk.

The scrutiny panel heard that perpetrators are clever in choosing the young people who they groom for abuse, typically using tried and tested methods to manipulate victims. Today, the council will meet to discuss the findings and decide upon a course of action.

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Ofsted: Most children want 'order in the classroom'

More must be done to curb poor discipline in schools, as the majority of pupils want "order in the classroom", the head of Ofsted told Good Morning Britain.

Sir Michael Wilshaw explained: "They don't want to odd individual - the Jack the lad and the Sally showoff if you like - to ruin their education."


  1. National

Ofsted 'adding note of fear and uncertainty' in schools

The education watchdog is "adding a note of fear and uncertainty" in schools by changing what they define as good behaviour and failing to be clear about what they expect.

Russell Hobby, general secretary of the National Association of Head Teachers (NAHT), said there was no evidence of a discipline crisis in schools.

Ofsted is contradicting itself. Reports from its routine inspections say behaviour is good or outstanding in 83% of all schools. That's not yet perfect but it shows a massive improvement.

What is the explanation for these contradictions? Firstly, Ofsted have changed the definition of behaviour. It would help if they had been clear about that and given the system time to clear the new hurdles. It is not 'failure' when you are asking more of people.

We also feel that Ofsted are intentionally adding a note of fear and uncertainty across the education system, seeking to contradict the Department's attempts to rebuild the shattered confidence of teachers and leaders.

Ofsted is appearing to set education policy rather than inspect the implementation of policy - and the Department should be wary of ceding such powers to unelected officials.

– Russell Hobby
  1. National

Idle chatter 'most common form' of poor discipline

Children interrupting their learning because they are talking to a friend is the most common form of poor discipline,

Idle chatter interrupted almost every lesson, according to some of the teachers interviewed by the education watchdog.

Their report found:

  • Some 69% of teachers and almost half of parents (46%) said children chatting about a subject not related to their work was a problem.
  • Another 38% said disturbing other children was a problem in class.
  • Calling out (35%), not getting on with work (31%), and fidgeting or fiddling with equipment (23%), were a top problem.
  • Some 19% of teachers said pupils not having the correct equipment was a frequent occurrence.
  • Purposely making noise to gain attention was pointed to by another 19% of teachers.
  • While 14% said answering back or questioning instructions was a problem, with other teachers citing use or mobile devices (11%) and swinging on chairs (11%) as a sign of poor discipline.
  1. National

Pupils lose an hour 'because of bad behaviour'

School children are losing an hour of their learning time every day because of bad behaviour, a scathing report from the schools watchdog has revealed.

The behaviour is more pronounced in secondary schools, Ofsted said. Credit: PA

Chatting, calling out, swinging on chairs, passing notes and using mobile phones are "very common" in English schools, Ofsted found.

When added up across the academic year, pupils will lose 38 days of teaching each year to "low level" bad behaviour, the watchdog said.

The report also hit out at head-teachers, as too many heads, particularly in secondary schools, "underestimate the prevalence and negative impact of low-level disruptive behaviour".

In the last year schools serving almost 450,000 pupils have been judged below good for behaviour.

Newcastle welcomes 2,500 visitors for Uni Open Day

Northumbria University expects over 2,500 visitors Credit: Northumbria University

This weekend Newcastle will welcome over 2,500 visitors as universities across the region host open days, including Northumbria University.

At Northumbria University, there will be accommodation tours, workshops and mini lectures to entice the many thousands who will have travelled to our region.

Professor Andrew Wathey, Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive of Northumbria University, said: “By opening up the University to the public, we are able to show prospective students the appeal of studying at Northumbria. It's no surprise that Northumbria is attracting more applicants than ever before."


Free school opens despite opposition from own council

A controversial free school that was opposed by its own local council has opened its doors and promises to offer a different type of education.

A free school is one that is set up by an organisation or group of individuals. It is funded by the government but not controlled by local authorities. This means that curriculum, term times and how the school is run is not determined by the government.

Stockton Council said there wasn't enough demand to justify the multi-million pound price tag of the new Ingleby Manor school in Ingleby Barwick.

The school opened this week with just 80 pupils but says it will soon become a huge addition to the area.

Education Correspondent Dan Ashby reports:

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Scarborough Council bids to run university campus

Scarborough Borough Council has announced that it intends to submit a joint bid with Coventry University College to run the university campus in Scarborough.

Scarborough Campus, University of Hull

Earlier this year the University of Hull announced its intentions to pull out of the Scarborough campus to focus on its larger educational base in Hull and since that time, the council and local partners have been looking at ways to secure university education in the town.

The council says the proposed collaboration with Coventry University would create a university campus aimed at providing high quality, industry responsive education at a reasonable price with sustainable student numbers.

The ambition is to develop the campus so that it is sustainable in its own right and as such has realistic opportunities to achieve full university status for Scarborough, which would see it teaching and awarding its own degrees.

This is a defining moment in Scarborough's history and a paradise in educational standards. It will be an enormous boost to the economy and will give Scarborough the wow factor. It will enable the international, national and regional businesses at Scarborough Business Park to recruit higher level apprentices and graduate level personnel.

– Peter Wilkinson, Chairman of Scarborough Business Ambassador Forum
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