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The life
A Christian perspective on society and the education industry for the Christian professional in education.

Overindulged children struggle in the classroom.

The middle class parents making their little darlings’ lives a misery – by never telling them... no! Overindulged children struggle in the classroom, says psychologist

  • Unruly children are increasingly likely to be progeny of ‘helicopter’ parents
  • These parents pander to their every whim and are ruthlessly ambitious for them
  • Child psychologist says their children tend to play up at school to get attention

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Fewer pupils expecting to go to UNI.

The number of secondary school pupils in England and Wales expecting to go on to university has fallen for the second year in a row, a survey has found.

While a high proportion of 11 to 16-year-olds (74%) do plan to study for a degree, this figure is the lowest since 2009, the Sutton Trust survey suggests.

It is down from 77% last year and 79% in 2015, from a high of 81% in 2013.

The government said the reality was that entry rates for 18-year-olds had been rising every year since 2012.

Figures from the university admissions service, Ucas show that 32.5% of 18-year-olds in England and 29.5% in Wales went into higher education last year - the highest recorded entry rate for both countries.

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Left handed children penalised.

Children are still “penalised” for being left-handed with ministers lacking the information to understand the scale of the problem, education campaigners have warned.

It is also feared a disproportionate number of prisoners are left-handed, with calls to research whether classroom struggles trigger a “downward spiral” in which pupils get low marks, their self-esteem drops and their future opportunities are damaged.

The government has stood firm on the national curriculum, despite campaigners asking for it to include a legal duty for left-handed pupils to receive specific teaching to meet their needs – something which is currently non-statutory guidance.

Education minister Nick Gibb, in a letter responding to concerns, said teachers need to ensure all pupils – including left-handers – receive “whatever specific support they require” to make progress and recognise which youngsters need extra help.

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Vulnerable children left in 'limbo'.

Thousands of vulnerable children in England are being "left in limbo" because their needs are not severe enough, a charity has warned.

Action for Children estimates 140,000 children referred to social services over issues like drugs, alcoholism, domestic violence and neglect are not getting the help they need.

It says they often fall through the cracks as they are not at crisis point.

Ministers say their social care reforms will improve support.

Based on Freedom of Information requests from 141 local authorities in England, the report says: "These children have needs that are too great for schools, health or other universal services to meet on their own, but they are not eligible for support from statutory social care services.


"Our research suggests many are living in challenging family situations, affected by issues like domestic violence or substance misuse. 

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Lack of ethnic mixing in Universities?

There are warnings of a lack of "ethnic mixing" in the UK's universities, in a study from the Institute for Policy Research at the University of Bath.

Ethnic minority students are more likely to be concentrated in new universities in London and big cities.

But white students are more likely to attend predominantly white institutions, says the study.

The report warns of "segregation" as a result of students' choices of university.

There are also ethnic divisions within subjects, with only 25 black Caribbean students entering medicine or dentistry courses in 2014-15.


"If we are to create a more tolerant UK society, where people are aware and respectful of cultural and ethnic difference, it is vital that greater mixing happens," said leader of the research project, Dr Michael Donnelly.

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The pressure on twins.

Twins are being driven to anxiety and depression because parents and teachers treat them the same, a mental health charity has claimed.

Whilst most children can experience anxiety when measured against the abilities of their peers, the problem is more acute in triplets and twins - because they are always “intrinsically compared” to one another.

In an appeal to parents and education leaders, the mental health charity Young Minds has warned that lumping together siblings with similar features but wildly varying abilities and feelings is more likely to lead to mental health problems later in life.

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Extended school day adds pressure on pupils.

A compulsory lengthened school day could affect the family life of pupils and increase pressure, Department for Education research has concluded.

The ‘Extended Activity Provision in Secondary Schools’ report, looks at the views and attitudes of school leaders, teachers and parents in regards to an extended school day in secondary schools.

Responses to a compulsory extension of the school day were mixed as some staff and parents noted that there are some potential benefits, such as time to engage with life skills and enrichment activities, as well as an improved relationship with teaching staff. 

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Very poorest children fall further behind.

The very poorest children in England have fallen even further behind their non-disadvantaged classmates since 2007, research says.

The Education Policy Institute study suggests the most disadvantaged pupils are more than two years behind their classmates when they sit their GCSEs.

These children were those entitled to free school meals for 80% of their time at secondary school.

The Education Secretary has warned of a social mobility emergency.

And in a recent speech, Justine Greening highlighted some areas of the country with an "entrenched disadvantage" - where low skills and poor employment were found in a downward spiral alongside underachieving schools.


The EPI report, Closing the Gap? acknowledged the disadvantage gap had been entrenched in the education system for generations and that successive governments had tried to tackle it.

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Welsh inquiry into inactivity.

An inquiry into the barriers stopping children and young people becoming more physically active has been announced.

The Welsh Assembly's Health, Social Care and Sport Committee will launch it with a workshop at the National Eisteddfod on Anglesey on Tuesday.

People aged 11-16 will talk to committee chairman Dr Dai Lloyd and Ynys Mon AM Rhun ap Iorwerth.

Dr Lloyd said the inquiry would look at whether "efforts to increase physical activity are working".

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Overuse of Social Media by children?

Parents must intervene to stop their children overusing social media and consuming time online "like junk food", the children's commissioner has said.

In an interview with the Observer, Anne Longfield criticised the ways social media giants use to draw children into spending more time.

She said parents should be proactive in stopping their children from bingeing on the internet in the summer holidays.

Ms Longfield has launched a campaign to help parents with the issue.

She said: "It's something that every parent will talk about especially during school holidays; that children are in danger of seeing social media like sweeties, and their online time like junk food.

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