A Week in Education

19th October 2007 at 01:00
The ofsted chief inspector's annual report reignited debate over the quality of state education.

Christine Gilbert said there had been improvements in the past 12 months, but that she was still concerned at the numbers of failing secondary schools in England.

Of the secondaries inspected, 13 per cent were rated outstanding, 38 per cent good, 39 per cent satisfactory and 10 per cent inadequate - down from 13 per cent last year.

Within minutes, Sky News reported that "half of England's secondary schools do not give pupils a good education".

Ms Gilbert also highlighted poor behaviour and pupils' ignorance of what "Britishness" meant.

Pages 16 and 17

Half of adults said they would move house to get a good school place for their child, according to a poll by The Children's Society.

The survey found that parents were desperate to escape a "postcode lottery". One in seven said they would lie about their religion to get their child into a faith school, or give a false address if need be.

Bob Reitemeier, The Children's Society chief executive, said: "For many parents, the costly exercise of moving house just isn't an option."

Page 6

Schools have already met a 2008 target to get children doing more physical education, according to the School Sport Survey.

The study found 85 per cent of pupils already get two hours of PE per week. But there are still worries that girls are not exercising enough.

The news came as a separate government study warned that, under current trends, half the population will be obese within 25 years.

Ed Balls, Children, Schools and Families secretary, and Prue Leith, chairperson of the School Food Trust, launched plans to boost the uptake of healthy meals in schools.

Page 20

The health Protection Agency is to launch a two-year study into the impact of wireless internet connections, after concerns were expressed about their possible effect on pupils. The technology is estimated to be in half of all primary schools and four out of five secondaries.

Professor Pat Troup, HPA chief executive, said there was no evidence to date that the networks adversely affected health and no reason why schools should not continue to use them.

The Professional Association of Teachers raised concerns about wi-fi earlier this year, when a member suffered nausea and headaches after it was installed in his class.

the mail on Sunday has obtained video footage that suggests David Cameron was telling the truth about a schoolboy who told him he was too drunk to sit an exam.

The Tory leader included the story in his conference speech to back up his belief that appeals panels should give heads the power to exclude pupils. But Mr Cameron's account had been questioned by governors at Kingswood Arts College in Hull, where he spent two days teaching last May.

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