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BBC School Report 2015




Our BBC School Reporters wrote some excellent reports and made some fantastic short films about some of today’s burning issues. They are to be commended for their hard work, dedication and imagination. Read on to find the articles and please take a look at the videos via this link:


Students from this school will be making the news for real on 19 March 2015 as they take part in BBC News School Report. We aim to publish the news by 1600 GMT on the News Day, so please save this page as a favourite and return to it later. 



Midday Report

-          Shawlands Academy

In Shawlands, we began the day by looking through a selection of today’s newspapers and news websites and spent some time discussing the main stories of the day, how we felt about them and suggesting the possible ways we could approach the reporting of them.

Next we broke up into smaller working groups and spent time researching our chosen stories through a variety of sources and making notes from these.

Our next step was to organise ourselves into groups which include a researcher, writer, camera-person and news reporter.

We are all busy writing and filming our reports and our BBC School Report Art Department are hard at work preparing backdrops and props.



Update: Our first stories are now starting to come in…

The Effect of the Osborne Budget


Britain is walking tall again

George Osborne delivered the 2015 Budget speech on 18th March. He talked about “a Britain that is growing, creating jobs and paying his way”. Throughout the duration of his speech he covered many points to demonstrate this. He stated that Britain grew faster than any other major economy in the world last year: 50% faster than Germany and 7 times faster than France.  

We are getting the whole of Britain back with a truly national recovery

Osborne covered many positive points in his speech but not without mentioning the lowest paid in society. “It’s the lowest paid who suffers most when the economy fails”.

Was this speech perhaps sugar coated as most politics nowadays is? Did this truly represent change that needs to happen to help those struggling?


We choose jobs.

It is true that many NHS employees, especially nurses, feel let down by the government and unvalued. Many feel the government needs to deal with staff shortages.

Lisa Marsh, a 40 year old NHS nurse said “I do feel we need to be properly paid…I would love to see that they (the government) are helping us to improve patient care, to value and invest in the NHS so we can provide for the next generation.”

Last year 450,000 NHS staff protested on after the coalition announced a 1% income rise.

A record number of people in work.

More women in work than ever before.

And the claimant count rate is at its lowest since 1975.

But for people like Lisa, the government has to invest in her, the employed.


We choose aspiration

In 2010 the coalition announced the introduction of university fees, £9,000, £27,000 for 3 years. This makes the dreams of young people who want to learn even harder to achieve.

In 2016, the combined wealth of the “1%” is said to be more than the “99%” unless real change occurs. This shows “extreme inequality”. How are those in some of the most impoverished parts of society meant to hope, aspire for a better life.


We choose family

Many families rely on benefits feel that there is a stigma surrounding them describing them as “lazy” and “just scrounging off the system”, even though many are employed and hard working.

Lisa Daniel, a low paid mother of four, said “If we’re all in it together, then they should chase everybody for the money, not just penalise people on benefits.”


We choose the whole nation

Britain is becoming better in many ways. People are finally benefitting, although there are still people that are struggling. This budget plan is a new beginning. Only time will tell if it will set Britain in the right direction.


We choose the future


Written by Niamh & Rayna


New Rapid Ebola Diagnosis Kit


ReEBOV Antigen Rapid Test Kit has been assessed and listed as eligible for use in Ebola affected countries by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

Ebola is currently tested for in glove boxes in large complex laboratories which need highly trained staff to use and takes from 12 to up to 24 hours to collect the results. This means that if someone is suspected of contracting Ebola they are not able to be quarantined quickly and if they have Ebola, their chances of spreading it will increase and their ability to be treated quickly and their ability to be cured will be lower.

The new tests can give results in as little as fifteen minutes as it detects Ebola proteins directly in blood and saliva. It has however only correctly identified 92% of Ebola patients and 85% of Ebola free patients so the probability of it being correct is high, but not high enough.

An important bonus of the ReEBOV Antigen Rapid Test is that it does not need electricity to work. This means it is able to be used in low quality health facilities and can be directly brought to patients who do not have access to these facilities.

Dr Manfred Weidmann was one of the main developers while producing this test. Two teams have already been trained to use this and have been deployed in Guinea and three more have been expected to join them.

Dr Wiedmann has said, “If you use a strip-test then you don’t need a complicated detection device and this could then be developed into a bedside test.”

This project as received funding from the EU, The Wellcome trust, the Swedish Public Health Agency and the Pasture Institute in Dakar, Senegal.

By Maya


       World’s Worst Manicure!


A Russian model was left in pain after receiving a manicure from an angry beautician who filed her nails until they bled.

Maria Lomovskikh, 20 years old, went to a beauty salon in her home town of Voronezh in southern Russia. Maria was criticizing the beautician because she found what she was doing to her was “unprofessional.” The beautician was so angry she began filing harder and harder until the nails bled. The model then had to get 2 fingernails removed because they were infected. Now the model finds it hard to get jobs after what happened.

The beautician was punished by deducting a mere £30 from her pay.

There was a poll that asked whether the manicurist should face more severe punishment and the results were overwhelmingly for yes!

By Jordanna & Salwa


The Ultimate Love Test


A man who had a simple life faced a traumatizing decision after his current girlfriend and his ex-girlfriend threw themselves into a river to find out what one of them he loved the most.

Wu Hsia, who is a 21 year old man broke up with Jun Tang (20) after meeting 22 year old Rong Tsao. For 3 months when dating Rong, Jun was asking him to get back with her.

Annoyed and confused, Wu arranged a meeting between the 3 of them. During the meeting the girls argued a lot then Jun jumped into the river asking him to save her. Soon after, his current girlfriend jumped in too. Wu jumped in to save his current girlfriend and Wu called his brother to save his ex.

We interviewed a group of people to see their views about the story.

 “I think the story is really absurd and weird,” said one.

“I don’t understand why they would do that.”

When asked what they would do if they were in Wu’s position, when his girlfriend and his ex-girlfriend jumped into the river, here is what they said:

“I would just try to call someone for help or maybe try to save both in case it was too late, because then if someone died it would be all my fault.”

“Yeah, then if you only saved one the other one would be like ‘oh do you not love me then!’”

We asked them why they thought this had happened:

“She still loves him,” said one.

“Maybe Wu was not actually what we think, maybe he was leading her on.”

When asked if they think this was Wu’s fault for getting them to be in the same place, they said this:

“It is kind-of his fault because he had to have known that it would have ended in a very bad way or a good way. But it was the woman’s fault for jumping in!”

“I guess he meant well, trying to sort it out,” said another.

They were asked what they think of Wu’s reaction when he saved his girlfriend and then walked away to call his brother to save the ex.

“He should have still helped the ex!”

“That’s not very moral of him to do something like that; he should have just tried to save them both.”

By Jordanna




Darkness is coming to the UK as the solar eclipse beckons at around 8:24-9:31am and ends at 10:41am. After the 20th of March 2015, the solar eclipse will not shadow the earth for another 10 years.

84% of the eclipse will cover London.

89% will cover Manchester.

93% will cover Edinburgh.

97% will cover Lerwick in the Shetland Isles.

94% will cover Glasgow.

The last solar eclipse that was seen was the 11th of August 1999. The next visible eclipse after Friday’s will not be until 12 August 2026.

By Jordanna



“Too Skinny” to Work

French lawmakers have been debating about the controversial topic of “skinny models”. On Monday, France’s health minister Marisol Touraine, expressed her opinions on the topic and showed her support on the idea of criminalizing the use of underweight models.

Many people think that models that are “too skinny” are glamorizing unhealthy life styles and glorifying eating disorders such as anorexia.

Currently there are 30-40,000 people suffering from anorexia in France. 90% of which are teenagers. While some people think that it is due to their own emotional problems, others think that it is because of the unrealistic expectations placed upon them by the media.

The new French law is suggesting that there should be a minimum BMI (body mass index) that a model must have in order to work. They must have a BMI of at least 18 which is equivalent to about 55kg or 121lb. If the requirements are not met, they could be facing a fine of up to 79,000 euros and any staff that where involved in the breach would face jail time of up to 6 months.

Laura Patterson is a Scottish model. She has recently spoken out about her feelings towards the French law saying it was “shocking” and “judgemental”. As a model who works for Glasgow agency Colours, she said “I think it is shocking they are picking on models under the BMI of 18. I certainly won’t be going to work in France if that’s their attitude”. She continued “People can be so judgemental. I feel very fit and healthy, I am 8 stone but that is just my metabolism. I certainly don’t starve myself, I enjoy my meals but take everything in moderation”. She told the interviewer that she felt sorry for models in France and she thought the authorities were just picking on girls like her.

The 22-year old model has a BMI of 16.5. According to The WHO (World Health Organisation) she is just under severely malnourished and just over starvation but she said she feels “fit and healthy”

What is defined as too skinny? What is a normal body type?

 We asked a number of pupils at our school, Shawlands Academy, for their opinion on the matter. When we asked ‘Do you think models glorify eating disorders?’ We got answers like;

 “I think they do it without knowing it and I think a lot of models are quite healthy in the way they eat … without knowing it they make young people believe that being skinny is the only way.”

“Yeah, especially with women because they see these really skinny models and think that they have to be that way to be beautiful”

“I think they can because some models take it to extreme lengths to be a certain size.”

We also asked ‘Do you think it will make a difference?’ They replied with;

 “Maybe, but instead of banning certain people from work, we should stop airbrushing and editing as much”

“No because some people can’t become heavier than they are”

Another question was, ‘Do you think it’s fair that people are being fined and fired?’

“No I don’t think it’s fair. It might just be the way the person is”

“I think being fined and fired is over the top”

Finally we asked, ‘Do you think anything else could be done instead of banning models?’

“Potentially, if we see a greater example of different sizes and shapes in the media.”

“I think the media should stop putting out pictures of unrealistically skinny women because it puts pressure on young girls.”


By: Alina, Arabella and Kaya





Graeme Macrae Burnet’s visit to Shawlands Academy

On Monday 16th March Scotland’s potential new top crime writer Graeme Macrae Burnet, author of the debut novel ‘The Disappearance of Adele Bedeau’ kindly came to our school to talk to us about his book and what being an author entails. 

He started by telling us about what his debut novel was about, and how he got his inspiration for the story, after he had explained it he read a section from the first chapter of the book, it was really interesting to listen to him talk about his book and his experiences in writing the book and the obstacles he came and how he overcame them to get his book published.

After he had talked about his book, he told us about ideas for future books we got to ask him some questions! Our classmates came up with lots of great questions, it was really fascinating to listen to him answer the wide variety of questions being asked and learn a bit more about him and his past life before he became an author.

When the period was over, everyone in our class had had a great time and were really sad for it to end as it we could’ve listened to him talk for ages. He made such a good impression someone in our class asked him for his autograph! 

After his visit, I’m sure a lot of people will be interested to read his debut novel as it sounded really good and a great read. He was a real inspiration for people who are interested in being an author as he showed that anything is possible and he has achieved what young people may want to achieve some day in their life.

By Tom and Saul


Crime Writer Visits Shawlands Academy


Graeme Macrae Burnet visited Shawlands Academy on Monday 16th March to talk about his literary crime fiction novel “The Disappearance of Adèle Bedeau”. He read a passage from the first chapter to give us a flavour of the thrilling story. As well as this, he answered some questions. He explained that the novel took three years in total to write and produce. It is his debut novel and his second, “His Bloody Project: Documents Relating to the Case of Roderick MacRae” is being released in November this year.

After being asked about the pieces of literature he loved, he told us that his favourite author is George Simenon. He explained that Simenon wrote over 500 books and short stories in his lifetime. 200 of these have been published. Of course, he added, this is an incredible amount of work to produce and seems to be impossible for anyone else to top it.

He told us it was always his goal to have a novel published and to have a second is unbelievable. Burnet explained the process of publishing a book is a lot harder than people think. He said that one of the reasons it took so long to get his book onto shop shelves is because it is extremely difficult to even find a publisher in the first place. However, of course, he did find a local publisher and “The Disappearance of Adèle Bedeau” was released in July 2014.

A big thank you to Graeme for coming in and speaking to us!

By Niamh and Katie