BBC School Report 2013
The Press and Publicity Panel are currently holding a planning meeting and researching their news stories. Stories will be online from 4pm.
Breaking News Stories
  • 2 Helicopters crash in Berlin during a police exercise, near the Olympic Stadium
  • Obama Conference in Ramallac – Obama: “US is committed to an independent and sovereign state of Palestine”
  • Cyprus politicians rule out levy on bank deposits
  • Former BBC general Greg Dyke to become chairman of England’s football association in July
  • Office for national statistics: ‘Retail sales figures, excluding fuel, show year on year increase of 3.3%
By Laura, Hannah and Rebecca
Is Social Networking Taking Over Our Lives? 
On a day of momentous development for technology, we question whether it is all getting too much and overwhelming us. Most of people with access to internet have at least one social media account, if not more.
It is a day of celebration for popular social networking site, Twitter, as it turns seven years old today. Twitter is a unique website that allows users to express their opinions to the tweeting world, but the challenge is to fit it into 140 characters. Currently, there are 200 million users worldwide, all generating an astonishing 400 million tweets per day, which works out at about 600 a second. This is quite surprising as 40% of Twitter users don’t actually tweet themselves, they just use twitter as a platform to see what is happening in the world.
Seven years ago today at 12:50pm, the first ever tweet was sent by Jack Dorsey, the creator of Twitter, ‘just setting up my twttr ’; since then Twitter has whipped up a storm of debates, arguments and comical scenarios. It is also much easier to stay in contact and share information with friends, family and followers. One person, who has a positive view on Twitter, is Rebecca, who said, “I like the idea of being able to contact people I normally wouldn’t talk to, and expressing my opinions to the world!”
However, it isn’t for everyone, as some feel it is just another social networking website. While some students enjoy the free speech this site gives them, other students such as Megan think that, “It is just another excuse for people to talk about their boring daily routines such as going to the supermarkets. Nobody really cares!”
Another popular advance in social media is YouTube. Recently, the third most visited website on the internet announced it had reached the amazing milestone of one billion monthly users. The site, created in February 2005, allows users to watch, share and comment on videos, from sneezing pandas to watching Nick Clegg apologising in a surprisingly catchy song. Over 4 billion videos are viewed a day and over 3 billion hours of video watched each month, which reflects the popularity of this website. On YouTube it is a great honour for users to subscribe to your channel, showing that they like your videos. The most subscribed YouTuber is comedy duo Smosh (Ian Hecox and Anthony Padilla) who have a mind-blowing 8,500,000 subscribers.
YouTube is very popular amongst the teenage generation, as Hannah explained: “I practically live on YouTube. I can follow my favourite bands and gamers, such as Pewdiepie and Pentatonix, who are my favourites.”
With evidence like this, it is clear that social media is becoming a very prominent part of our lives; some may argue that social networking has become an obsession, if not an addiction for many people. Is this is a good thing or a bad thing though? We all know that social media has brought us together as a nation, but has it pulled us apart as a community by restricting face-to-face communication in favour of sitting behind screens? There are many different opinions on this debate out there, but what do you think?
By Hannah and Laura
Trinity Shines the Light on Leeds
On the 21st March 2013 the Trinity Leeds shopping centre opened its doors for the first time. The £350m shopping centre is set to create at least 3,000 jobs for the local community.
There is a lot of money expected to be made, and this shopping centre hopes to bring shoppers to Leeds. As well as shops this 1,000,000sq ft shopping centre has restaurants, bars, cafes and even a cinema!
As well as pleasing shoppers, this shopping centre creates jobs; over 3,000.This is good news since unemployment rates have raised, especially in Leeds. In Leeds alone 41,100 people are unemployed, (statistics are provided by the Official Labour Market Statistics and the BBC website) that’s 9.7% of people unemployed, and when compared to Britain’s overall unemployment 7.9%, it’s not great for Leeds. However, Trinity Leeds will help reduce these figures.
So, are people looking forward to Trinity Leeds? Yes, Jonah asked: “There is a new shopping centre opening in Leeds, would you be interested in seeing what it has to offer?”
George replied by saying, “Depending on the shops there, I think it could be a great place to hang out with friends.”
However, not everyone is as looking forward to the new shopping centre, Jonah asked, “How do you feel about a new shopping centre in Leeds?”
Leah replied by saying, “No I don’t want to visit because it doesn’t cater for what I want.” As you can see, there are mixed views towards the new shopping centre opening in the centre of Leeds.
So, what competition will Trinity have, if any? Well The White Rose Shopping Centre could be a possible threat, with a variety of stores. Located 2.9 miles away from Trinity Leeds, this will be competition. So is the centre of Leeds the right place to introduce a new shopping centre? We can only find out, with its advertising, its many stores and its location, I am sure many people will welcome this shopping centre and it will create good business.
By Daniel and Jonah
Duchess of Cambridge in Centre of Royal Baby Speculation
Early in December 2012, Kate Middleton was admitted to King Edward VII Hospital suffering from acute morning sickness, which affects less than 2% of women and usually, in 9/10 cases, it ends within 3 months of their pregnancy. Unfortunately, Kate was badly affected by this rare condition and was reportedly suffering from dehydration and sickness and, as in most cases, the Duchess was suffering from nausea.
Three months on, Kate is out of hospital, but now, speculation is growing as to whether the royal baby is a boy or a girl, but Kate ‘Isn’t telling’. The Duchess allegedly slipped up on a recent visit to Grimsby when she accepted a teddy from a member of the public and graciously replied by saying that she ‘Would take that for my d…’ implying that she was going to say ‘daughter’. However, her second slip suggests otherwise when she called the baby ‘he’. These contrasting slips have certainly caused a stir in the media, leaving everyone curious as to the gender of our future King or Queen. Of course, it is possible that the parents-to-be are unsure themselves as to the sex of their child, with Kate commenting that, “I’d like to have a boy and William would like to have a girl.” leaving us all questioning what names the parents may choose – depending on the gender of the Royal Baby.
According to the odds created by bookmakers across the UK, the favourite girls’ names at the minute are ‘Elizabeth’, ‘Frances’ and ‘Diana’, but for boys, the top three names are currently ‘John’, ‘Charles’ and ‘James’. Undoubtedly, whatever they choose, the parents to be plan to break a tradition and it is thought that they will not employ a full-time nanny, but instead, they will become modern, hands-on parents. Kate herself has spoken in the past about how she ‘Enjoys doing the cooking and household chores’.
But when asking people how interested or how important they are about the gender of the Royal Baby, we got mixed views on the matter. One of our fellow peers, Hannah, told us, “I would personally prefer the child to be female, due to the new ruling of the Commonwealth, which means that if Kate and William have a girl first, she will become Queen – something which I believe would a historic change in equality for women.” On the other hand, one 15 year old student, Joseph, also added, “I’m not interested in the arrival of their new baby as it has little impact on my life.” Clearly, the news of the Duchess’s baby, is hot topic for many royalists and public alike, whether they have a strong view, or like Joseph, are less interested.
It is thought that the new addition to the royal family is due in July 2013, so there isn’t long before the suspense is over and the intrigued world discover the gender and name of the much awaited and anticipated baby, which will more than likely be of worldwide interest.
By Rebecca and Abigail
Locust invasion!
Let’s see what’s on the menu for thousands of people in Israel: Locust soup, fried locust and more chocolate coated locust!
Over the last two weeks the people of Israel have been dealing with a locust emergency. For the last two weeks, the skies in the south of the country have been invaded with these swarming creatures.
Locusts eat their body weight in food every day. They have been swarming and munching their way through fields of maize and potatoes. Then the locusts try to fly to other places overseas to look for food , when they are hungry, they eat each other.
People have been eating locusts as the locusts are eating all the crops and, people say that they are really tasty. But there is a catch, as the locusts are invading planes are flying low and spraying pesticides onto the locusts, so people are advised not to eat them as they may be contaminated with pesticides. In some countries locust are classed as a delicacy.
Many restaurants think that it is great as they get free locust to add to their meals and it is good as the locusts they catch are served fresh.
So what do they taste like?
Disputably, locusts are said to taste similar to chicken, toasted sunflower seeds and prawns… or so they say!
They are extremely similar to grasshoppers, and snakes enjoy them as a tasty snack.
A pupil named Jonah thinks this about the locust invasion “I think it could be caused by a spike in the food chain, if I was in the people’s shoes and there was no other food around, then I might consider eating locust. I think that it would be disgusting.”
It remains to be seen whether this unique delicacy will affect the environment in any ways.
By James
Where's the water?
Water has been discovered on the surface of the red planet, Mars. It has been revealed that the water was drinkable. It was found on the 19th March 2013.
The water was very salty. It could only support small amounts of microbes during Mars’ transformation. It was a hostile world with flowing streams of water. It did not have the resources to sustain large animals.
It was discovered by the Mars Rover. When the rover went into a crater and drilled into a rock, it revealed that there was once a flowing stream there during Mars’ transformation.
In some areas of the planet, the water was pure enough to drink. Billions of years ago there were lakes and rivers on the planet’s surface. Mars was a lot warmer and wetter allowing water to stay on the surface and not freeze.
Evidence of water there has been found but different teams have debated about the results. Some people believe that ground water has created the canyons, other people believe it is a result of carbon dioxide, snow melt and some ridges are thought to have been caused by rain. In total, there is 5000km of these canyons.
Life may have been able to survive here and scientists are eager to find out more wonders about this amazing planet.
By Jacob and William
Vaughan Feeds the Net
On the 16th of March a clash between the two fierce, mid-table rivals commenced for a fight to ensure Championship survival. For both of the teams, Leeds and Huddersfield, it was crucial to win this very important derby - both for the fans and the teams. In the end, it was a tight game at Elland Road, ending in a win for the Terriers (1-2).
In the first half there was not much happening in terms of goals, although both of the teams desperately attempted shots at the two goalkeepers. Unfortunately, no goals appeared, however the referee managed to issue a total of four yellow cards - just in the first half. The first one was given to Habib Habibou in the first ten minutes. Next up was Paul Dixon from Huddersfield on an unfair challenge on the Jamaican Austin. Two more followed, this time both from Leeds United; Luke Varney (26th minute) and Radolph Austin (35th minute). Of course the match would have flown much better if the referee was more lenient towards the players, but then again we cannot question the referee’s decision.
On the other hand, the second half was full of surprises and showed the passion of the players towards this sport. To properly re-start the match Danns hammered a volley into the unsuspecting Kenny to make it 0-1. Then Leeds responded with a header from White who came on just two minutes before. This goal made it 1-1 and it did not end there. To finalise the game, which was believed a draw, Vaughan finessed a 100% chance into the bottom right corner to make it a 1-2 victory for the Terriers.
We asked an avid Leeds fan, Daniel, what he thought about the game: ‘They are dropping in the table. If they don’t get their act together they will not be able to make play offs’.
Overall, it was an extremely exciting game that left the 23,000 supporters at Elland Road wondering what went wrong.
By Kieran and Krystian
The Morley Academy. Fountain St, Morley, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS27 0PD
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