BREAKING NEWS by Connor - Chief Inspector questions literacy?

Sir Michael Wilshaw wants to change the way literacy is taught as he believes that school children are getting high results in their year 6 tests but do not get high results in their important G.C.S.E. final examinations. Half of the students that get good year 6 results get good G.C.S.E. results, this is a huge concern for the Chief Inspector of schools in England.

He does not believe the standards are high enough in Primary Schools and believes phonics should be taught well and are very important.

He insisted: "to few schools gave enough thought to ways of encouraging the love of reading, and sizeable minority of pupils failed to reach national expectations in reading".

This is very worrying news as the country needs to keep producing high levels of academic grades to keep employability high.

Big Company, Small Profit by Amelia

Argos says sales fell 7.7% in it's latest trading update. Feeble demands for electronics has been balmed for another fall in sales at retailer Argos. For the eight weeks, the company's owner, said sales fell 7.7% to £480 million pounds. Argos shut 12 stores during this time, making its total number of stores 748.

Internet sales now account for 40% of revenue. It's sales declined 6.2% to £195 million pounds. Richard Hunter, Head of Equities at Hargreaves Lansdown Stockbrokers, said: "It is difficult to envisage an end to the company's current woes, as economic hardship intensifies and the competition shows no sign of stopping". Profit margins at Argos were also cut by half percentage, mainly caused by increasing delivery costs and spending on market. The latest scales data follows a 7.1% fall in half year profits reported last year. What do you think?

Big Ben Strikes High by Summer

It is currently free to climb the 334 step clock but as from July charges are going to rise to £15! It has been quoted that: "As it is at £15 now, in a few years time it will go up to £20 and so." So, if they are charging people to go and see Big Ben, then how long will it be before you see places like Westminster and other places start charging? Some people may think that this is ridiculous and unfair, that you have to pay £15 to go and climb Big Ben, however, others may think it's fair and you should in fact charge more! It all comes down to a simple question - where does the money go? Will people be willing to pay when they come from around the world? Will it help to benefit our country?

Coventry Crash Causes Chaos by Alex

Police are currently investigating the tragic bus crash that took place in Coventry town, Tuesday 13th of March. At approximately 3pm, the bus collided with a taxi, and within minutes the looters struck and swarmed into the smallest cracks to find anything they could get their hands on. As the driver of the single decker bus was left with severe chest pains, in which he was later taken to hospital, was confined in his small booth as he was unable to realise what had happened.

There were known to be around 12 passengers on the bus at this time, and two were injured, fortunately not fatally. In the taxi, there were two passengers and the driver, who are suffering from some minor injuries, they are expected to recovered from them with no permanent damage.

Skiing students shocking return by Tom

The Belgian authorities are preparing to fly home the bodies of approximately 22 children and 6 adults, killed in a coach crash in Switzerland. Two military planes are on standby. The coach, carrying 52 people back to Belgium following a skiing trip, crashed into a wall head-on in a tunnel on Tuesday. Relatives of the victims were later flown to Switzerland, many still unsure about the fate of their children. Another 24 children were injured, some critically, in the late night accident near the town of Sierre, it is said to be one of the worst traddic incidents in Switzerland's history!

For many relatives of the children in the bus crash it was good news that their children had survived but for some they weren't so lucky. On Wednesday, parents and carers met at St. Lambertus School where they were given the names of the surviving children some leaving heart-broken.

Approximately 100 relatives and carers flew to Switzerland on a government plane to collect their lucky children who survived.

Books for the Blind by Charlie

It seems so easy to read a book these days, but every day we take for granted our amazing ability to see. You're seeing things right now, without even thinking about it. But it is very different for children with visual impairments.

Ash Green School's Sigma and Delta colleges are thinking about the less fortunate and are helping them to widen their learning. They have been challenged with the task to create books for the blind as their enrichment project. It won't be easy, but every single member of the two colleges is motivated to help others. They are doing this by creating stories with physical objects and textiles and reading aloud. For example, if in the book it says: "There was a knock at the door," then on the book there would be a real door knocker so everyone can hear the knock on the door like it is actually there. This is all for the new RNIB school on Wheelwright lane, just down the road from Ash Green, as they feel it is a kind gesture of caring and love in the community. After all, we are all the same on the inside.

Sigma college's last enrichment project was a huge success, and so was the one before that! Let's hope this one is as great a success. That's what Ash Green is doing to help, but what will you do?

Walkers worth £50,000 by Ellie

Ever tried a bag of crisps and wondered what they taste of? Well, crisp company, Walkers, have organised a competition to the public with 3 mystery flavours. A woman from Warwick guessed correctly and has won £50,000 and a visit from the Walkers' star Gary Lineker. She guessed a sour cream and spring onion flavour and pipped over 793,000 people to the winning post. She explained that she: "had a lot of fun guessing the flavours and submitting a few answers!" Walkers sold three different flavours: sour cream and spring onion, Lincolnshire sausage and brown sauce and Birmingham chicken balti. She also said: "I was closest with flavour B, as I could really taste the sausage but couldn't decide between ketchup and brown sauce!" The 49 year-old seems very happy and satisfied with her prize. Crisps may be bad for your health, but they pay off in competitions!

Virgin gives London tube WI-FI by Jamie

Virgin Media has won the contract to give the London underground Wi-Fi. However, you will only be able to connect to the Wi-Fi on platforms, escalators, and ticket offices, as it would take major construction to provide it in the tunnels.

You will be able to connect to the Wi-Fi for free from July 2012. However, after the Olympic and Paralympic games the Wi-Fi will be pay-as-you-go.

The internet will be offered to every station. By the summer they would have introduced Wi-Fi to about 80 stations and 120 by the end of the year.

Snowboarding possum hits the slopes by Ben

A thrill seeking possum from America has become an internet sensation over the past few days. As ratatouille the jumper wearing, snow-boarding possum showed off skills on his Burton Riglet mini snowboard. Hitting over 800,000 hits on YouTube in only 8 days it is one of the fastest growing videos on YouTube.

Weather reported to you by Estelle and Matthew

Thursday Weather

3:00pm: Mainly cloudy, London and East of England sunny, North of Scotland possibly some rain.

6:00pm: North East England sunny, London and East of England clear skies, very Northern Scotland maybe some sun, rest is cloudy.

9:00pm: London and East of England still clear, West Scotland heavy rain, rest is cloudy.

12:00am: Dover foggy, North East England clear, North and West Scotland rainy, lots of cloud.

Saturday Weather

Day time: Sunny spells, Wales Midlands South England rainy, Bristol chance of hail, rest is cloudy.

Night time: Midlands and Wales rainy, a few sunny skies, cloudy.

And today, Thursday afternoon will be mainly cloudy, but London and the East of England will be sunny with temperatures of 13 or 14 degrees.  The North of Scotland has a chance of rain as it sweeps across Scotland from the east.  Temperatures of about 10 and 11 degrees but may be a bit lower in Scotland.  About 6:00pm there will be sunny spells in North-East England and towards the south there will be clear skies.  The rest of the country will be covered in heavy clouds.  In the night London and the South-East England will be clear but West Scotland will have heavy rain. Temperatures will be about the same throughout the whole day.