The TESS archive - 21 September 2001
Uncool to be smart
Boys face an "achievement ceiling" and daren't go further, according to more than half the pupils in a Scottish Executive-backed study into the growing gap between boys and girls. Boys who work hard are seen as "uncool" and fear friends will poke fun at them. The same pressure applies to only one in four girls.
People's menu is broth and chops
Scotch broth, lamb chops with mashed potatoes followed by blackberry crumble and custard would be lapped up by pupils if school meals used Scottish products and were free, said Scottish Socialist leader Tommy Sheridan. As the lone Socialist MSP published his draft bill, designed to provide free meals, Jack McConnell, Education Minister, said he was prepared to look again at mandatory guidelines on nutrition.
Socrates takes front seat
Nine-year-olds in Clackmannanshire are to be guided in fundamental questions about life, first raised by Socrates in 470BC. More enquiring minds should lead to better-behaved pupils and higher attainment, the authority believes. Clackmannanshire is thought to be the first authority in Britain to introduce a "philosophy for children" course in all primaries. Within two years, every upper-primary pupil will be able to tackle key questions once a week for an hour.
Assemblies help pupils after US attacks
Special assemblies have been held in schools across Britain as bewildered children come to terms with the terrorist attacks in America and fears of the aftermath. Measures have been taken at Islamic schools to protect pupils, with the Muslim community's fear of a backlash showing little sign of abating. England's first state-funded Islamic primaries, which closed to protect children following the attacks, have reopened.
Schools grieve for firemen
Perhaps no school district in New York has been more badly affected by the World Trade Center attacks than Brooklyn's District 20. The middle-income area is home to a large number of firefighters and policemen, and many were taking part in the rescue operation when the towers collapsed. Officials say the fathers of 12 pupils at one school alone are missing, believed dead.