Drugs ‘used by two in five students’ (26/04/2018)

Drug-using students should be given advice and support instead of being disciplined when no criminal offence is committed, a report recommends. About two in five students are drug users, says the study from the National Union of Students. Universities’ most common sanction is a formal warning but experts say punitive action deters users from seeking help. In a survey of 2,800 students, the most widely used were cannabis, ecstasy, nitrous oxide and cocaine.

Source: BBC

Home-schooling in the UK increases 40% over three years (26/04/2018)

The number of children being home-schooled has risen by about 40% over three years, the BBC has found. Across the UK 48,000 children were being home-educated in 2016-17, up from about 34,000 in 2014-15. Mental health issues and avoiding exclusion are two reasons parents gave for removing children from classrooms.

Source: BBC

Primary school mental health counselling may help economy, study says (26/04/2018)

Mental health counselling for primary school pupils who need it could provide long-term benefits for the economy, a study by a charity has suggested. Pro Bono Economics estimates that every £1 spent on one-to-one counselling could return society £6.20 in improving future job prospects and cutting crime. More than a third of this would be government savings from higher taxes and less spending on public services. The analysis recognised that some children would have recovered anyway.

Source: BBC

Children’s home workers should be professionally registered like social workers, abuse inquiry says (26/04/2018)

Children’s home workers should face the same professional registration requirements as social workers, the independent inquiry into child sexual abuse has said. The inquiry’s interim report said it was “very concerned by the absence of professional registration for those working in care roles in children’s homes in England”. It said children in residential settings were “particularly vulnerable to abuse by adults” working in them, yet in England social workers are the only staff working in residential homes who must be registered.

Source: Community Care

‘Archaic and harmful’: report condemns strict handling of student drug takers (26/04/2018)

Universities are being urged not to tell the police about students caught in possession of drugs, amid fears that an overly punitive approach stops vulnerable young people from seeking help. The recommendation is made in a study by the National Union of Students in collaboration with the drugs information charity Release. The study looks at drug use among students and how higher education institutions deal with drugs incidents.

Source: Guardian

Benefits of mental health counselling in primary schools ‘worth six times the cost’ (26/04/2018)

The potential benefits of providing mental health counselling in primary schools are worth six times the cost, according to a new report. Better job prospects for pupils, and lower rates of ill-health and crime, would mean that for every £1 spent on one-to-one counselling in primary schools, there is a potential long-term benefit of £6.20, an economic evaluation of the charity Place2Be’s school-based mental health services has found.

Source: Times Education Supplement

Survey: Proliferation of Mobile Devices Among Children (26/04/2018)

The proliferation of mobile devices being used by children of school age appears to put more young people at risk of online peer on peer sexual abuse, including grooming, sexting and distribution of sexualised content. It is an area of great concern to schools and parents. Despite the admirable efforts of educationalists, widespread online safety education for pupils and even extra-curricula coaching for parents by some schools, cases of abuse continue to rise.

Source: South West Grid for Learning

Sexual violence guide created for Scottish universities (25/04/2018)

Practical guidance to help Scottish universities and colleges tackle sexual violence and harassment on campus is to be published. The guide offers advice and training for staff and highlights the need for well-publicised support information for students. It follows a campaign by the mother of a student who took her own life after being in an abusive relationship.

Source: BBC

YouTube Kids to give parents more control over output (25/04/2018)

Google says it will add new parental controls to its YouTube Kids app, after inappropriate videos were repeatedly discovered on the service. One of the new options prevents channels that have not been vetted by human moderators appearing on the app. Parents will be able to choose between human-curated playlists and letting YouTube’s algorithms decide what children get to watch in the app.

Source: BBC

Abuse inquiry calls for register of children’s home staff (25/04/2018)

Staff in children’s homes should be required to register with an independent body that oversees standards within the profession, the interim report of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse has recommended. The inquiry, announced in July 2014 by then Home Secretary Theresa May to investigate institutional failings that came to light in abuse cases involving high-profile public figures, said it is “very concerned” by the absence of professional registration for those working in care roles in children’s homes in England.

Source: Children and Young People Now