BBC News Report 2014

BBC News Report 2014

Media students at Haughton Academy have been taking part in BBC News School Report Day. The event allows students to assume the role of journalists for a day; investigating their own stories and reporting on issues important to them.

21 students from Miss Hall’s BTEC Creative Digital Media course took part in the event which was a great success, “Students have really enjoyed taking part in the News Day and experiencing what life as a journalist is really like including the successes and the hurdles they had to overcome.”

Alongside regular stories a breaking news feature also occurred when an entire pack of Blu Tack was stolen and a ransom note was left.

All stories will be live at 4pm check back then to see what happens!

A Mountainous Dip in Education?

At Haughton Academy, part of the Education Village, a school trip took place for students and teachers to learn new skills on how to ski in the snowy mountains of Northern Italy.

The trip was eligible for all years so that nobody was missing out. Our media team, Village Vision, interviewed two students about what they enjoyed most about the trip and whether they would recommend other students to take part in educational trips provided by the school. Students, Joe and Caitlin, recommended that students should take part in educational trips because they learned new skills such as; confidence boosting, socialising skills and others relating to independence and team building to help them in their education and also in the future.

However, even though the trips were classed as educational, teachers who are also parents at Haughton Academy have other thoughts on taking children out of school during term time. The concern is that schools are worried about students missing out on vital education, especially in higher year groups because of GCSE exams approaching. However, they are providing students with trips abroad which some parents think are non-educational, therefore parents are confused by the fact that they are not supposed to take their children out of school during term time.

An interview took place to clarify what teachers and parents think about the query to do with term time trips whether they are educational or non-educational. Different opinions were shared during the interview. Mrs Larsen a teacher of vocational subjects shared her opinions towards the idea that trips during term time should be allowed. This is because she “feels that even though the trip might not be educational, the activities and tasks that students need to take part in require many skills that students will need in their further education and in their careers.” She expressed her opinion by sharing some trips that she has planned for the next 2 years. One of these is Duke of Edinburgh which requires many skills associated with team building, independence and many more.

Other teachers who work in the school think that it is “wrong to take students out on trips during term time because the major impact it has on their education, especially if they are missing out on revision to do with course work which will effect their over all grades in future exams.”

However, some teachers can understand why parents would want to take their child out of school for a holiday because of prices being cheaper and because they are parents themselves, if they could take their child out of school during term time, they would.

Some statistics that Village Vision found out during the interviews were that 3 out of 4 teachers wouldn’t want to take their children out during term time because of the effect it has on coursework and other vital pieces of work. 1 out of 4 teachers think that if they could take their children out of school, they would because of price reductions on holidays.

To conclude the issue, teachers agree with students being taken out of term time if the trips require educational skills so that in the future teachers can relate to the trip in their education and it isn’t classed as missing out, because it will help them in their future.

Article written by: Louise, Louise, Liam and Lewis

NUT Strikes Again

On Wednesday the 26th of March over 2,900 schools across the UK were closed or partially closed due to the first national NUT strike for years.

The strike took place to highlight the continuing issues of pay, working conditions and pensions that teachers are outraged by and thousands of teachers took part to show their frustration. The real question is: are these strikes effective or are they just a disruption in children’s learning?

Thousands of teachers gathered in cities such as Newcastle and Liverpool to protest yesterday against the policies that Head of Education Michael Gove is trying to introduce. If these policies were passed, teachers would become “very unhappy and unable to do their jobs correctly because of that” according to a teaching assistant we interviewed.

Miss Walters, a Science teacher at the Education Village in Darlington, stated that Michael Gove “doesn’t appreciate all the work teachers already do for the future generation and he is making teachers stressed, which in turn, will affect students education.” A previous Union Rep of the NUT said “Michael Gove is demanding too much of teachers who already work long hours in order to meet the requests of the Department of Education.”

Many teachers believe that the Department of Education is pushing them over the limit but they also believe that the strikes taking place are ineffective. One teacher said “The main reason that the strikes are not working is because not enough people are getting involved in order to make an impact.”

However, it’s not just teachers that will be affected by Michael Gove’s policy but student’s education will also be affected largely. Sharifah, a dedicated Year 10 student, said during our interview “Michael Gove has recently stopped the possibility of re-sitting exams and isn’t thinking about the teachers or more importantly, the students in the correct way. He is focused on the wrong priorities which will eventually come back to bite him.”

In an exclusive interview with Julie Ashmore, President of the NUT in Darlington discussed how not only members of the NUT but teachers everywhere would be against Gove’s decisions. “It won’t just be members of the NUT but every teacher in the UK affected by his changes. This is why we went on strike yesterday.”

She also said “Students will be very negatively affected because the bottom line is that everything Gove is trying to implement is for them. Teachers will have a more administrative role meaning that time will be short for them and with the average secondary school teacher working 56 hours plus in a week, they will become extremely stressed.’

When asked if she thought the strike was effective, Julie Ashmore said “I hope so.” But only time will tell whether the NUT’s long struggle will be worth the wait.

Reporters: Connor, James, Kieran and James

Caught Blue Handed!

During the excitement of BBC News Day a breaking story occurred. Miss Hall had been diligently putting up news day posters only to return to find her Blu Tack missing! She first noticed that the Blu Tac was missing at 11:26 after she let 3 students use her desk with the blue tac on it. The person who stole the Blu Tac mocked Miss Hall by leaving a face cut out of the sheet of paper that the Blu Tac was in. Here’s the first tweet of the incident.

Miss Hall says that she is “heart broken that someone has stole her brand new sheet of Blu Tack and she has to fork out the money to buy some more.”

Joshua said that “when he got to the desk the Blu Tack was not there.” He claims to have seen Jake steal the blue tac. Joshua also said that someone would have to be “stupid to do such a crime” but Joshua did see Jake draw the face and Jake has told me that this is true but he claims he did not steal the Blu Tack.

Abby claims that when she got to the table there was no Blu Tack there. She also did not see who stole the Blu Tack from Miss Hall and she thinks whoever did it “is wrong for doing it” and also Abby adds that Jake did draw the face on the Blu tack packet.

Jake said that when he got to the table the blue tac was not there he also said that he had seen Josh steal the blue tac from the table. He says that people like to steal blue tac so they can throw it other members of the class room. And Jake admits to drawing the face on the sheet of blue tac, but he did not steal it.

So we still do not know who actually stole the Blu Tac from Miss Hall but the thief will be punished.

Reporter: James

Community Helps the Heroes

In recent weeks the Darlington community has been trying to raise £100,000 for Help for Heroes

Students and staff have being taking part in the activity at the Education Village in Darlington.

The estates team Mitie have been running a campaign to collect milk bottle lids. The project was announced by Steve Brown the head of the Mitie team at school. The original idea came from his wife who is a scout leader and the idea is to get the bottle caps and donate them for wheelchairs for the disabled. The campaign is not doing well so as Fiona thought it would have been best to broadcast it by sending flyers through the post so then the carers so they could send their children into school with the milk bottle caps, therefore a better solution. It is believed that the campaign is not being advertised as well as it should be which means it is struggling to reach its target.

As of today Mrs Armstrong is in charge of a cake sale to raise money for Help for Heroes together with her form class she would like to carry out her idea and sell cakes at any time possible. The last time she organised a cake sale she made a profit of £170. This is her second time selling cakes she has being doing it since last February and loves it. She would like to donate what she earns from selling cakes to ‘Help for Heroes’ she would like to raise more than £100 each time, as she would feel bad if she only earns a small amount. She would also like increase the community spirit and get more people involved as she is doing it by herself Mrs Armstrong is a music teacher but she wants to help charities by making cakes and selling them. Hopefully the added support of Mrs Armstrongs cake sales will boost the popularity of the campaigns locally for Help for Heroes.

Reporters: Joe, Andrew, James

Investigated: What are student workloads really like?

As part of BBC News Day 2014 we wanted to investigate the workload of students. Students were asked if they feel over worked in lessons, also asked were teachers about whether they think students are over worked. This is an important story to cover due to the Government changing key education policies like shortening school holidays, increasing the length of school days and recent changes to Ofsted inspections. This could bring a lot of stress to students as they are expected to achieve all the time which is hard if they don’t have the required time to rest.

Students were asked how much homework they get a week their reply was “I get around 3 pieces a week.” And we also asked how much time students spend on homework a week their reply was “Around an hour.” However we asked a year 7 and they said “I usually get one or two pieces of homework a week.” An he said that he spent “Two or three nights of home work time a week” Students didn’t always specify how many pieces of homework they did in that time period.

Teachers were asked how much homework they give out per a week and one reply was “I give students in key stage three, projects and in key stage 4 it is around 30 minutes a week” this shows that students get a respectable a amount of homework however this is only in one subject.

The parents we interviewed said “its [homework] good because they only get a bit but it’s hard” which shows that parents think it’s an acceptable amount of work and it doesn’t take long however this is from the perspective of a parent of a primary school child.

So what do you think?

We’d love to know what your opinion is on the subject.

Please write to us here Have your say

Reporters: Ben, Robert, Harry, Callum, Alex,