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BBC School Report 2018

What is the appropriate age to be on social media?

Snapchat has one hundred and seventy-eight million active daily users. A recent survey conducted that 78% of ten to twelve year olds have social media accounts. Despite the recommended minimum age limit of being thirteen, platforms like Facebook and Snapchat have over a thousand of ten to eighteen year olds using the app, which was directed by ComRes.

A number of people believe that social media sites such as, Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat have failed to protect young children. 1 in 4 children have experienced something distressing on a social networking site. Following this, there were over 12,000 counselling sessions with young people who talked to Childline about online issues last year.

A false sense of connection is very common with adolescents, who use social media sites. Numerous people, who use social media, think they are connected to the people who are following them. However, they don’t know who the person behind the screen is, and could be anyone of any age. The NSPCC has admitted that they have had twice the amount of reports of emotional child abuse online, which relates to receiving 27 reports of online abuse a day. Studies showed that in 2009/ 2010 they acknowledged 3341 reports, whereas in 2016/2017 the figure increased to 10,009. 1 in 3 young people report having experienced an incident that felt threatening to their mental, physical or emotional well-being. The immediacy provided by social media, means that it is available to predators as well as friends. Only 10% of victims inform a parent or adult of their abuse (most fear that the adult will blame them for it, or overreact, which would make the situation worse). Kids are vulnerable to the practice of cyber-bullying and dangerous relationships. 1 in 10 repeated cyber bullied teens attempting suicide. Hazardous relationships such as online relationships have many raiders waiting to hunt down their prey. Most hunters get their prey, which leads 1 in 8 attacked on 12 year old are thinking about suicide.

A student named Myles from The Nottingham Emmanuel School stated “In my opinion I think that social media isn’t good because it cuts off your social life and makes you more distant with your family and friends.”

On the other hand, Mr Khan, a computer science teacher in The Nottingham Emmanuel School stated that “Social media is a great learning tool. I use social media as a professional tool, as it is important for my work; to find out what is happening. If you are a part of social media, it is a great responsibility. I recommend children to be using social media at the age of 14/15. This is because you have more of a responsibility as you are reaching GSCEs. ” This shows that teachers and students can both have strong and differing opinions on the same question.
Many students believe that Social Media is positive and helps them with their lives. A Year 7 student from The Nottingham Emmanuel School said “I got myself in trouble, social media used to be a big part of my life. I am very happy without it, I will be going back on social media when I can trust myself, I think I would be in Year 10 when I go on social media. ” Nevertheless, a sixth form student named Daniel thought that “Social media is can be both positive and negative at the same time, but it really just depends on your maturity. Your maturity would reflect on the way you use the Media.” This shows students of different ages respond to Social Media contrarily. Not only does it helps their education but Social media makes it very easy to connect with like-minded people. It can also make a person more self-assured, because not everyone is confident in their social lives. In addition, for many people, being online is a further extension of their normal lives with the outside world. More than a third admitted they had made friends online with people they have never met in person.

Another reason why online platforms are good is because they make learning easier, since many teachers use the platforms to contact their students to set tasks and give further help with the topics. There are many examples of this, but two of the main ones are:
Khan Academy
Duo Lingo
These sites provide a way in which students communicate with teachers for further help.

Furthermore, social media makes studying more collaborative and efficient. A recent study in colleges found a trend that over 70% of students feel that the technology they use to study should be tailored to their needs.

Other students also gave us their views; we can see this from our video.

There are many positive things to social media, and there are many negative things as well. Mostly, the views are negative and the main reason is privacy settings. Social media has affected many people’s lives, when it comes to their privacy. On social media accounts, such as Snap Chat, people are posting what happens in their daily lives. When they do this, they do not know the dangers, which they are going to face later on. The things that are posted remain available indefinitely. Some may seem harmless, but a countless amount of people can see your picture and can track you down. 79% children of the age 10-12 are active on their social media accounts, posting what they are doing in their house and where they are. They update after every half an hour. Social Media is used an awful lot, but most of the users are below the average age. Social media can affect many lives and it can go very far, we need to consider the pros and cons of social media, but be aware of the younger people online.

By: Natalia, Emmanuella & Trisha

How GCSE has changed and the stress from it.

Further subjects will see new GCSEs introduced over the following two years.

The main features of the new GCSEs are:

  1. A new grading scale of 9 to 1 will be used, with 9 being the top grade. This will allow greater differentiation between students and will help distinguish the new GCSEs from previous versions.
  2. Assessment will be mainly by exam, with other types of assessment used only where they are needed to test essential skills.
  3. There will be new, more demanding content, which has been developed by government and the exam boards.
  4. Courses will be designed for two or three years of study – they will no longer be divided into different modules and students will take all their exams in one period at the end of their course.
  5. Exams can only be split into ‘foundation tier’ and ‘higher tier’ if one exam paper does not give all students the opportunity to show their knowledge and abilities.
  6. Re-sit opportunities will only be available each November in English language and maths.

Teenagers who are stressed about doing well in their GCSE exams are likely to get lower results than peers who remain calmer, research has found. Researchers said pupils who worried about grades scored up to one and a half grades lower than their peers. The study is based on a survey of 325 pupils, conducted three to four months before they took their GCSEs in 2012. – exam worries, how confident they felt about dealing with their concerns and strategies they used to cope with anxiety.


“I am about to take my GCSEs and I am under so much pressure as my parents are expecting me to do really well. I am going to revision classes and trying really hard but I feel like it is not good enough for them. My parents don’t allow me to do anything else apart from revision and if I try and talk to them it always ends up in an argument.”          – Childline caller

This makes us look at different types of pressures at home from parents because they want their child to do well. However some level of stress may help students do better as they’re more motivated, although this depends on the individual.

Ways to deal with the  stress

  1. Get the right amount of sleep for your body
  2. Engage in a physical activity as it’s a helpful way to relieve stress.
  3. Don’t spend too much time indoors at home.
  4. Be organised.
  5. Continue with activities you will enjoy, to keep a positive mind-set.
  6. Balance social life.

Balancing your social life

There will be numerous activities to join – you can get involved in all of these, but ensure your academic performance will not suffer because of this. And try not to spend too much time on social media sites and answering emails, texts and phone calls. Remember to sign off from social media every now then since even though socialising is fun, too much of it and too much computer time can lead to more study related stress. Consider every day as a new experience and be responsible with your activities.

Getting enough sleep

Students who don’t have good sleeping patterns are more likely to get stressed. Resting is important, and it not only recharges your body, but also develops stronger immunity. Sleep deprivation can limit you physically, mentally and emotionally. It affects also your ability to think about, respond to and judge situations. Ensure that you are well rested by following regular a sleeping pattern, trying to include a set bedtime and a set waking time. Strive for at least eight hours of sleep everyday, however it must be taken into consideration that everyone’s body is different.

By Arav

Do you have a healthy body and lifestyle?

Do you worry that what you eat could drastically affect the way your body and mind works? We asked a small group of people who attend the Nottingham Emmanuel School both as staff and students. The questions asked, sparked quite a few different opinions about the subject of healthy eating and how it tends to affect your lifestyle. We asked the following questions to both staff and students: How do you feel about your body? Are you judged based on what you eat? Do you ever judge people based on what they eat?

Studies show that professionals believe that young people feel pressured by family, peers or media to fit into the narrow bespoke image of attractiveness. Another issue that surrounds individuals working in a professional environment would be the hindering factor of family or colleagues teasing them about the way they look.

We also asked two members of staff who work closely with students and understand the issues concerning image that young people face. The staffs that we interviewed were Miss Judson and Mr Walker, who work in student support. They both responded to the question “Do you judge people based on what they eat?” Miss Judson answered with ‘”I feel that people have strong opinions on how we eat” When we asked Mr Walker his answer was “judging people is never purposeful”

The school food standards apply to all maintained schools and are as follows:

•high-quality meat, poultry or oily fish

•fruit and vegetables

•bread, other cereals and potatoes

And do not permit the following foods to be sold unless anywhere on school premises unless it’s a charity event:

•drinks with added sugar, crisps, chocolate or sweets in school meals and vending machines

•more than 2 portions of deep-fried, battered or breaded food a week

These are some figures of how people are affected by their diet.

We asked a year 9 student named Dylan who answered the question “do you think how you eat affects your body?”  He answered by saying “if you don’t eat healthy it may cause illnesses.” We also asked Scarlett the same question and she responded with “Yes because if they don’t they will get diabetes or something worse” We then asked a Food Technology   teacher called Mrs Norridge, if she believed teenagers have a balanced diet she replied to this with “on the whole no and I think that’s part of not just what we have at school, I don’t think it’s just your age group either in general, it’s nationwide”

We also asked our English teacher Mr Bowen the following question “Do you wish to educate students on healthy eating and drinking?” He responded with “Yes I think that it is really important, when you see students downing cans of red bull to confiscate it.”

We asked a student named Eleanor to answer the question “Do you judge people based on what they eat.” She responded with “I don’t normally judge people on what they eat” We then asked the same question to a year 7 called Grace she replied with “no I feel like it’s their decision and it’s not my place to judge” We also asked Sienna a fellow year 8 student the same question again and her response was “I don’t judge people I leave them to eat what they like”

How comfortable are YOU with your body? Studies shows that 90% of teenagers are unhappy with their body shape, we interviewed 2 different people who had different opinions on the way they look first we interviewed a fellow student named Jessamine she answered the question, “How do you feel about your body?” her response was “When you look in the mirror you always see the worst things about yourself.” However when we interviewed Kaiesha a student in our year who answered the same question however she seemed to have a different point of view,  her response was “I feel comfortable with my body” Showing a different opinion on body image and the way we choose to look.

On the whole the people we interviewed believed that healthy eating is a good influence on our bodies therefore we think that the topic of healthy eating should carry on being discussed in schools and in the work place to result in the coming/current  generations to be thoroughly educated on this very important topic. .

By Bethany & Ellie students at the Nottingham Emmanuel school

Are year 8 options really a good idea?

GCSE’s are qualifications in specific subjects specifically taken by school students aged 14 to 16 at a year below A levels. However now, Emmanuel has decided that instead of choosing your options in the middle of Year 9, we will now choose our options in the middle of Year 8. Every school have four compulsory subjects, which every student has to take. These are:

  • Maths
  • English literature
  • English language
  • Sciences (double or triple)

A variety of schools differ, but these are the main subjects. Schools then offer a range of optional subjects, such as:

  • Arts
  • Design and technology
  • Humanities (History and/or Geography)
  • Languages

Most schools believe it’s a good idea to allow their Year 8’s to choose their options early, but we spoke to students from around the school who had opposing thoughts. One of the Nottingham Emmanuel School’s Year 10’s, Nicholas, was asked a variety of questions.

He was asked how he felt his GCSE’s were going and if he had chosen options in Year 8, would it have impacted on his results now? He concluded that his GCSE’s were going well, that choosing options in Year 8 would have impacted him because he probably would have chosen different options. Additionally, another student in year 11, Paria, was asked the same questions, but had a variety of answers that were different as opposed to Nicolas’ answers. Regarding to the same questions, Paria thought that her GCSE’s were going extremely  well because she worked hard, she thought it was good for year 8 because they had more time to decide what they wanted to do and that although she wasn’t here in year 8, yes because it would give her more time to work on her grade.

So, is this a good idea or not? Obviously, different people have different opinions but if this isn’t a good idea, then do people really want this for year 8s? After all, the year 8s aren’t as experienced as the year 9s so people need to be sure. The Nottingham Emmanuel’s School’s APM (Achievement and Pastoral Manager) for year 8 told us that the school’s year 8 was mature enough for this option.

GCSE’s are also considered to be a really hard examination as some exams (such as art) last for ten hours. We spoke to Year 7’s from the Nottingham Emmanuel School and asked a different series of questions about options. Year 7, Malachi, was asked three questions which brought up some interesting results. He was asked three different questions. How do you feel about choosing your options next year, what is your view on GCSE’s and are GCSE’s a worry for you and why?. His answers were that he was ok about choosing options but wanted more information on them, he was confident about taking GCSE’s because he had a brother who was doing them now and he wasn’t worried about taking GCSE’s because he just had to listen in lesson. This provides a really good counter-argument as if GCSE’s are not a worry for people, then taking options in year 8 might be a good idea after all.

Another year 7, Destiny, told us that “GCSE’s aren’t a worry for me because I’ve heard that they are not that bad and you should just treat them like an assessment” But others say that if they chose their options in year 8, then it may have been a bad idea.

Obviously, the most important people that need to be questioned are the year 8s themselves. We asked 4 different students who each had rather different opinions. Everyone was asked exactly the same questions: How do you feel about picking GCSE’s this year, are you pleased about the time you have to study and were you nervous about taking GCSE’s.  The first student we asked was Chelsea.

A:  “It’s OK but just a bit confusing and it’s a bit stressful.”

A: “Yes because we need more study time.”

A: “Maybe because I have to get through my entry levels then get through my GCSE’s but I should have support doing my GCSEs.”

However, not everyone is that worried about GCSEs. Ben was also asked and his answers were entirely different.

A: “I think it is really good because it gives us more time to prepare for our exams later and that might mean we have higher grades later so that a positive that come from it.”

A: “Yes I am. I think that a few lessons like RS we don’t have that much a week but because we are doing an extra year we have a longer time for all subjects.” 

A: “I am not too nervous no, I think I was a bit nervous about the start of the options but it wasn’t as bad as I expected it to be.”

So with a complete mix up of opinions, we decided to ask another couple of students. First we asked Peace.

A: “Excited because you get to prepare before you actually do it.”

A: “Yes because you get 5 hours for almost each one and there is also after school.”

A: “Yes I am really nervous because it has changed a lot.”

Next we asked Ryan.

A: “I feel happy about it because it means we take it earlier and we don’t have to stress about it as much as we already have.”

A: “Yes because we have a long time which means we have more detailed knowledge about subjects which means we get better grades in our GCSE’s.”

A: “A bit yeah, because I think GCSEs are very hard to do.”

So over all, Year 8 feel nervous about taking GCSEs but are happy with the fact they are choosing options in Year 8 because of the amount of the study time we have.

Others are also unsure about how they feel about the year 8’s taking their options early.

The Nottingham Emmanuel School principal however, was totally for the Year 8 options procedure. He was asked how he felt about new system put in place and he said: “I think it’s the right thing to do, it was a difficult decision for the school to make because there are lots of benefits and dangers.” We also asked when you took your GCSEs, how did you feel to which he said: “I felt a bit stressed a bit under pressure from teachers, parents and myself but some I just found really interesting.” If the early options goes well this year would you recommend it? “Yes I think I would because it gives students more time on the subjects they are passionate about!”

So all in all, the year 8 options have been a new experience but the Year 8s are excited to start their new courses!

How does self-confidence and self-esteem affect students/people?

Self-confidence and self-esteem is an issue now days!

In secondary schools 44% of girls and 15% of boys are attempting to lose weight due to being pressured. Many students worry about impressing other people and think they should look a certain way. 74% of girls say they feel under pressure to please everyone.
From celebrities to friends, people get trapped into thinking they are not confident in the own body.

Katie Hopkins, a famous citizen, known around the world and is mainly known for body shaming people and criticizing others due to their appearance. Katie has been on many TV shows such as Big Brother; there was one TV show where Katie started to shame a member of the audience just because of her size!

She once said ‘I hate fat people…THEY ARE LAZY.’ Katie’s actions and verbal abuse does affect others in there self-confidence and their image of themselves.

How do you expect people to feel good about themselves if we have people such as Katie shaming people on their looks?

On the other hand, the students we interviewed had a strong opinion on what they think about self-confidence and self-esteem. We took out members of Emmanuel from different years too see what they would say and we got some very good videos of their thoughts on the topics. It was good to listen to each student’s opinion to see what they would say because they were all in different years. The feedback we got showed us that each pupil had a different view point than Katie Hopkins, because they mainly said ‘you should be happy the way you look, no matter what’ that goes and show that everyone is entitled to their own opinion. This shows us that self-confidence and self-esteem is really important on social media and in everyday life. Each student had a different view on things, which makes us and others think about how we make ourselves look and act.

This is Sami Ayoub who is already a member of the UK Youth Parliament; he has been on BBC News before quite recently. We recorded him and this is what he said, ‘no I don’t think that you should change the way you look but society and social media sometimes does persuade people into changing your appearance.’ He then went on to say, ‘I wouldn’t change a thing about my appearance and I’m happy with the way I look.’ He then continued with, ‘society influences every individual in a different way, even if someone doesn’t admit it, because we live in a society with social media and different things that influences us’. Sami’s interview was beneficial because we gained an insight into a Sixth Former’s perspective.

We also interviewed our Principal, Mr Hobbs

We interviewed 3 students and our Principal and we asked them 3 questions which were
1) Do you think men or women, girls or boys should change their looks because of other people’s views?
2) Are you happy with your body/appearance?
3) Do you feel pressured by society’s views?

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The Nottingham Emmanuel School
Gresham Park Road
West Bridgford
Tel: 0115 977 5380

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