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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Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore
'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

Army general planning to come out
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project