News Dr Andrew Davis claims rival camps in the debate over how to teach children to read are acting like 'religious fundamentalists'

Children who are fluent readers are being damaged by the Government’s insistence on using synthetic phonics in the classroom, a leading academic warns today.

August 2, 2012: Natalia Sheppard of Great Britain comeptes against Eman Gaber of Egypt in the Women's Foil Team Fencing round of 16

Fencing: Great Britain's women crushed by favourites Italy in team foil

Britain's women were crushed 42-14 in double-quick time by strong title favourites Italy in the quarter-finals of the fencing team foil at the ExCeL this morning.

On their marks: Jack Whitehall and the young cast in 'Bad Education'

A class act

The young stand-up Jack Whitehall writes and stars in BBC3's new sitcom, Bad Education, set in an inner-city comprehensive, and his sharp script has lured some top comedy talent. By Gerard Gilbert

On their marks: Jack Whitehall and the young cast in 'Bad Education'

A class act: Jack Whitehall's new BBC3 sitcom Bad Education has lured some top comedy talent

The public school-educated comedian writes and stars in the new sitcom, set in an inner-city comprehensive.

Academies to be allowed to hire unqualified teachers

All academies will be allowed to hire unqualified teachers in the future, the Government announced today.

Tony Bushby jailed for Boxing Day murder of girlfriend Catherine Wynter

A teenager who stabbed his girlfriend to death on Boxing Day as she babysat two young children was jailed for life with a minimum 25-year term today, Hertfordshire Police said.

Man guilty of babysitter killing

A teenage karate teacher was today convicted of stabbing his girlfriend to death on Boxing Day as she babysat two young children.

2012: In April this year, a lone gunman killed seven people and injured three at a small Korean Christian college in Oakland, California.
A former student, One Goh, carried out the massacre after a female member of staff wasn't on site when he wanted to speak with her.

America's worst mass shooting incidents

Following the news that at least 12 people were killed and up to 50 injured at the premiere of the latest Batman film, we take a look at some of the worst mass shootings in American history.

Diary: We don't need no free school education, Mr Gibb

Ah free schools, David Cameron said last week, "symbolise everything that is good about the revolution that we are bringing to Britain's schools: choice for parents... free schools work and parents and teachers want more of them. So more is what they are going to get".

So you want to be a journalist? A Masters has never been more important

As journalism evolves, qualifications are ever more vital, says Russ Thorne

DJ Taylor: Trend alert! Old is the new young

Or maybe I'm just getting on a bit. Trend alert 2! Ignorance is the new innocence ‑ everyone's claiming the Murdoch Defence nowadays

Catch-up class plan for poor pupils

Poor children who are behind in reading and writing are to be offered catch-up lessons before they start secondary school, it was announced today.

Polo coach and writer Major Hugh Dawnay

Major Hugh Dawnay: Acclaimed polo coach and writer

Major Hugh Dawnay was a passionate horseman who followed family tradition by serving in the army and then devoting himself to polo, becoming an internationally recognised expert.

Diary: Where are all our athletes? The Tories got rid of them

"Why is it that, in so many schools, sport has been squeezed out and facilities run down?" David Cameron asked yesterday, in a speech which lamented the low promotion of Britain's top athletes who have been through state schools.

Two out of every five victims of school homophobic bullying contemplate suicide, says survey

Two out of every five victims of homophobic bullying at school attempt or contemplate suicide, a report released today reveals.

Government responds to 'no strategy' claims in missing migrants row

The Government today insisted it had clear strategy to identify and remove people who fail to leave the UK when their visas run out, despite a damning report which revealed that the Home Office has no idea where 150,000 potential migrants are.

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Bryan Adams' heartstopping images of wounded British soldiers to go on show at Somerset House

Bryan Adams' images of wounded soldiers

Taken over the course of four years, Adams' portraits are an astonishing document of the aftermath of war
The drugs revolution starts now as MPs agree its high time for change

The drugs revolution starts now as MPs agree its high time for change

Commons debate highlights growing cross-party consensus on softening UK drugs legislation, unchanged for 43 years
The camera is turned on tabloid editors in Richard Peppiatt's 'One Rogue Reporter'

Gotcha! The camera is turned on tabloid editors

Hugh Grant says Richard Peppiatt's 'One Rogue Reporter' documentary will highlight issues raised by Leveson
Fall of the Berlin Wall: It was thanks to Mikhail Gorbachev that this symbol of division fell

Fall of the Berlin Wall

It was thanks to Gorbachev that this symbol of division fell
Halloween 2014: What makes Ouija boards, demon dolls, and evil clowns so frightening?

What makes ouija boards and demon dolls scary?

Ouija boards, demon dolls, evil children and clowns are all classic tropes of horror, and this year’s Halloween releases feature them all. What makes them so frightening, decade after decade?
A safari in modern Britain: Rose Rouse reveals how her four-year tour of Harlesden taught her as much about the UK as it did about NW10

Rose Rouse's safari in modern Britain

Rouse decided to walk and talk with as many different people as possible in her neighbourhood of Harlesden and her experiences have been published in a new book
Welcome to my world of no smell and odd tastes: How a bike accident left one woman living with unwanted food mash-ups

'My world of no smell and odd tastes'

A head injury from a bicycle accident had the surprising effect of robbing Nell Frizzell of two of her senses

Matt Parker is proud of his square roots

The "stand-up mathematician" is using comedy nights to preach maths to big audiences
Paul Scholes column: Beating Manchester City is vital part of life at Manchester United. This is first major test for Luke Shaw, Angel Di Maria and Radamel Falcao – it’s not a game to lose

Paul Scholes column

Beating City is vital part of life at United. This is first major test for Shaw, Di Maria and Falcao – it’s not a game to lose
Frank Warren: Call me an old git, but I just can't see that there's a place for women’s boxing

Frank Warren column

Call me an old git, but I just can't see that there's a place for women’s boxing
Adrian Heath interview: Former Everton striker prepares his Orlando City side for the MLS - and having Kaka in the dressing room

Adrian Heath's American dream...

Former Everton striker prepares his Orlando City side for the MLS - and having Kaka in the dressing room
Simon Hart: Manchester City will rise again but they need to change their attitude

Manchester City will rise again but they need to change their attitude

Manuel Pellegrini’s side are too good to fail and derby allows them to start again, says Simon Hart
Isis in Syria: A general reveals the lack of communication with the US - and his country's awkward relationship with their allies-by-default

A Syrian general speaks

A senior officer of Bashar al-Assad’s regime talks to Robert Fisk about his army’s brutal struggle with Isis, in a dirty war whose challenges include widespread atrocities