In brief

29th May 2009 at 01:00

Job hunt gets harder

Almost half of firms are not planning to recruit school-leavers in the coming months as the recession continues to have a grim effect on job prospects, according to a new report. Young people face a "long, hot summer" looking for work because of the poor outlook, says the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development. A survey of 500 companies showed that only one in five planned to take on 16-year-olds leaving school in the next few months. The picture was slightly better for graduates, although a third of employers had cut the number of university-leavers they had taken on so far this year.

Excluded from fun

Many pupils who attended private schools on Government-funded scholarships in the 1980s and 1990s were unable to participate in activities such as cultural visits, field trips and foreign exchanges, because their parents could not afford them. Researchers for the Sutton Trust, who interviewed 25 former pupils, also found that most scholarship pupils were unable to take part in weekend and after-school clubs. Many said they had felt like the "poor relation" at school.

Measles concern

Health officials say they want to work with teachers to prevent an escalating measles outbreak. About 40 cases of measles and 276 cases of mumps have been confirmed in the first three months of this year in the North West because parents are failing to have their children vaccinated against the infection. The Health Protection Agency North West says it fears "further outbreaks" in the region and has urged parents to protect their children with two doses of the MMR vaccine. The National Public Health Service for Wales says it is only a matter of time before someone dies in a measles outbreak affecting the country.

Good sport

Liverpool FC captain and England footballer Steven Gerrard took a moment out of his training schedule to visit schoolchildren at the Christ the King Centre for Learning in Liverpool. The midfielder took part in an event arranged by England sponsor Nationwide to promote its Nationwide Education programme. "I am delighted to help support Nationwide Education, which is assisting millions of school children up and down the country with their learning programmes," he said.

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