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Category Archives: Education

Disabled primary school children twice as likely to be bullied

Recent research suggests that primary school pupils in England with special educational needs are twice as likely as other children to experience bullying.

This research comes from London University’s Institute of Education (IoE), in which they analysed data relating to bullying from two national cohort studies. These studies were:

  • The Millennium Cohort Study, which is tracking the lives of 19,000 UK children born between 2000 and 2001
  • Next Steps, formally known as the Longitudinal Study of Young People in England, which tracks 16,000 people born in England in 1989 and 1990

The study’s findings bring to light not only the instances of bullying, but the ongoing and persistent nature of the bullying.

For example the study found that 12% of seven-year-olds with special needs felt bullied all the time, compared to 6% of non-disabled peers. Read the rest of this entry

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New report from international disability charity CBM claims disabled people are one of the world’s biggest ‘untapped resources’

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Kirsty Smith, CBM UK

Kirsty Smith, CBM UK

A recent report co-funded by Cambridge-based international disability charity CBM UK, claims that disabled people are one of the world’s biggest untapped resources.

This claim from experts in Cambridge follows a study into the costs of exclusion from education for disabled people, as a cause of lower employment levels and opportunities for people with disabilities all over the world.

The report suggests that people with disabilities suffer ‘widespread exclusion as a result of physical, attitudinal, financial and policy barriers’, and as a consequence, they are not able to contribute to the economy of the countries they live in. Read the rest of this entry

Cuts to Disabled Students Allowance could have disastrous effects

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Universities minister David Willets has announced proposed government cuts to the Disabled Students Allowance (DSA), meaning many disabled students could be prevented from going to university.

The DSA is a grant given to disabled students to meet extra costs of studying incurred because of their disability. From September 2015, the government plans to cut this allowance, only giving support to students with ‘complex’ needs.

The DSA will no longer pay for computers for disabled students, or fund non-specialist help such as note-takers and learning mentors. In addition, the costs of specialist accommodation will only be provided in ‘exceptional’ circumstances. Read the rest of this entry

Unions criticise new Help to Work programme for long-term unemployed

The new Help to Work programme came into effect this Monday, meaning that the long-term unemployed must meet an adviser everyday, or do community work for up to six months, if they want to avoid facing benefit sanctions.

The government have stated that the new programme will mean Jobcentre staff will have more options to support people who are struggling to find work, including ‘intensive coaching’.

The voluntary work could include gardening projects, running community cafes or restoring historical sites and war memorials. The placements will be for 30 hours a week for up to six months and will be backed up by at least four hours of supported job searching each week. Read the rest of this entry

One in five students has a mental health problem

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 A National Union of Students (NUS) study conducted in May 2013 shows that one in five students consider themselves to have a mental health problem.

Whilst this figure is staggering, it is not hard to understand why so many students struggle at university. For most, going to university means leaving home for the first time, often hundreds of miles away from friends and family, into shared housing with strangers in a completely new place, whom they often expect to make life-long friends with in the first few weeks of uni life. On top of this, students are thrown into studies with reading and assignments at a higher level than they are used to, and have to learn how to live by themselves, including how to budget costs of food, books and nights out in fresher’s week on a student loan. Read the rest of this entry

Report finds children with disabilities more at risk of suspension from school

A report has recently found that children with disabilities and children of colour, particularly black children, are suspended at “hugely disproportionate rates” compared to white, non-disabled children.

This report comes from the Discipline Disparities Research-to-Practice Collaborative, a group of 26 experts from fields of social science, education and law at Indiana University.

The group argue that this is a trend which is fuelling inequality in US schools.

The research shows that children with disabilities are suspended nearly twice as often as others, with students from minority backgrounds and homosexual, bisexual and transgender students also at higher risk of suspension. Read the rest of this entry