THURSDAY 9 March 2006

Priests suspected
The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Dublin said that 102 of its priests – more than 3.5 per cent of the total – have abused at least 350 children since 1940, the largest such number acknowledged in the Irish Republic. The government is to appoint a panel this month to investigate the allegations.
Source:- The Times, Thursday 2 March 2006, page 2

Lords ruling puts traveller families on notice to quit illegal camps
A family of travellers who claimed that a council’s decision to evict them from a public recreation ground breached their human rights lost their appeal at the House of Lords yesterday. In a landmark case with widespread implications for travellers’ rights to occupy land, the seven-strong House of Lords bench unanimously dismissed the appeal from the Maloney family.
Source:- The Times, Thursday 2 March 2006, page 8

Jail no longer means porridge
Cooked breakfasts will no longer be served in prisons, according to a financial report published today.
Source:- The Times, Thursday 2 March 2006, page 24

Pupil allowed to wear stab vest
A boy aged 16 who claims that he needs protection from violent teenagers has been allowed to wear a stab-proof vest under his school uniform in Hackney, east London.
Source:- The Times, Thursday 2 March 2006, page 24

Schools in dark over cash cuts
Schools appear unaware that the government expects them to cut spending by billions of pounds over the next two years, a committee of MPs said yesterday.
Source:- The Times, Thursday 2 March 2006, page 28

The prisoners with better sports facilities than schoolchildren
Prisoners enjoy better leisure facilities than schoolchildren, according to the government’s spending watchdog.
Source:- The Daily Mail, Thursday 2 March 2006, page 6

Nursery couple escape prison over child cruelty
A couple who set up their own private nursery kicked, hit and force-fed the youngsters in their care, Birmingham Crown Court heard this week. Chandrakant Patel and his wife Smita changed their pleas to guilty during the trial and avoided jail over six charges of child cruelty. The couple were ordered to pay £12,800 in fines, compensation and legal costs.
Source:- The Daily Mail, Thursday 2 March 2006, page 25

Teenager who swore ‘in private’ is cleared
A teenager who refused to pay an £80 fine for swearing as he chatted to his friends has had the case against him dropped. Student Kurt Walker, 18, was handed the punishment by a policewoman who overheard him using the F-word during a private conversation.
Source:- The Daily Mail, Thursday 2 March 2006, page 31

‘Gender’ abortions exported to India
British Asian women seeking abortions because their baby is female are increasingly being sent to clinics in India, a senior gynaecologist warned yesterday. Although termination based on gender is illegal in the UK and India, the practice is carried out on India on a regular basis.
Source:- The Daily Mail, Thursday 2 March 2006, page 37

NHS financial ills take toll on jobs and services
More hospitals announced yesterday they were shedding staff or curtailing services as the impact of the NHS overspend became increasingly transparent. Outgoing chief executive Sir Nigel Crisp said the NHS was overspending on revenue but had seriously underspent on capital investment during his tenure.
Source:- Financial Times, Thursday 9 March 2006, page 2

Personalised vaccine to counter MS approved for trials on patients
Trials of a personalised vaccine against multiple sclerosis are due to go ahead following approval from regulators. If the trial is successful patients would receive four injections a year to slow or even halt the progress of the disease.
Source:- The Guardian, Thursday 9 March 2006, page 6

Let God decide on our son, say right-to-life parents
The father of an 18-month-old boy at the centre of a right-to-life case told the high court yesterday that it was for God to decide when his son should die.
Source:- The Guardian, Thursday 9 March 2006, page 7

Brown’s youth reward vouchers an expensive gimmick
A plan by Gordon Brown to reward youngsters with “good behaviour” vouchers to be spent on sport and leisure me a frosty reception from the public and was dismissed as an “expensive gimmick” by opposition MPs. GMTV, which publicised the plan, said it has received a flood of 3,000 text messages with 90 per cent of people criticising the idea.
Source:- The Daily Telegraph, Thursday 9 March 2006, page 8

Prosecutions for domestic violence reach record levels
Record numbers of cases of domestic violence are being dealt with by the courts. A total of 35,231 prosecutions took place in the final eight months of last year, a rise of 36 per cent over the same period in 2004.
Source:- The Independent, Thursday 9 March 2006, page 14

Schools staffing guidance scrapped
The government has scrapped guidance to schools on staffing levels needed to teach the most vulnerable pupils. The guidance spells out how many adults schools need to cope with children with a wide range of disabilities.
Source:- The Independent, Thursday 9 March 2006, page 19

Scottish news

Child poverty targets reached
The government has hit its target to reduce child poverty by at least a quarter in Scotland but has failed to do so in England, new figures have shown.
Ministers have set a target to cut the number of children living in low income households in Britain by at least a quarter between 1998 and 2004.
In Scotland the reduction has been 34 per cent.
Source:-The Scotsman, Thursday 9 March 2006

Ex-teacher charged with sexual encounter with pupil
A former teacher at a private school has been charged in connection with an alleged sexual encounter with a 17-year-old pupil.
Michael Casey was a teacher at George Watson’s College in East Lothian when he allegedly met the girl in 2004.
She is reported to have told another teacher about the alleged incident which was then reported to the police. Casey resigned in January this year.
Source:- The Scotsman, Thursday 9 March 2006

Welsh news

ADHD ‘not caused’ by too much TV
Children do no become hyperactive due to watching too much television, according to a new report.
The research, carried out by Texas Tech University, covered 2, 500 children who had their television habits monitored for two years.
No link was found between the amount of television they watched and their risk to developing ADHD.
Source:- Western Mail, Thursday 9 March 2006

Schools rule on children’s holidays, not parents
The assembly government warned that parents have no automatic right to take their children on holiday during term time last night.
The High Court ruled that it should be left to schools, not parents or magistrates, to decide whether to authorise absences earlier this week.
Source:- Western Mail, Thursday 9 March 2006


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