UK news

Ofsted critical of Charedi teachers’ secular lessons

By Simon Rocker, August 21, 2008

More than a third of the strictly Orthodox independent schools which have been inspected this year have been criticised for the quality of their secular education.

In five out of 14 independent Charedi schools so far examined in 2008, Ofsted inspectors have said the secular curriculum lacks breadth or is inadequate.

Although independent schools - unlike state schools - do not have to teach the national curriculum, a change in the law five years ago has brought them under closer government scrutiny.


Racist attack in Llandudno

By Marcus Dysch, August 21, 2008

A man was punched and had his kippah knocked off in what police describe as a racist attack.

The 24-year-old was wrestled to the ground by two men and hit in the face during the assault in Llandudno, North Wales, last week.

He had been walking close to a Chabad-run community centre on the outskirts of the town when the men attacked him. They removed his skullcap before running away.

The victim, who has not been named, was treated for shock and minor injuries.


Headteachers delighted with a 'stunning' set of GCSE results

By Dana Gloger, August 21, 2008

The community's schools this week reported another impressive set of GCSE results, with three schools which released their results early to the JC achieving an overall pass rate of 100 per cent.

As well as a 100 per cent pass rate, pupils at Manchester's King David High School achieved 78 per cent of its passes at grades A* to B.

Joshua Rowe, chair of governors, said he was delighted with the results.

"They are outstanding. I never know what to expect when the results come out and these are stunning results.


Celebrations as six schools achieve 100 per cent pass rates in A-levels

By Craig Silver, August 21, 2008

Jewish schools across the country are again celebrating spectacular A-level results with six schools achieving a 100 per cent overall pass rate.

Hasmonean School in North-West London, which was one of those recording a 100 per cent overall pass rate, also achieved a 77 per cent pass rate at A- and B-grades.

Among their outstanding pupils are Anne Guetta and Gabriella Lebrecht, who both achieved five A-grades. Anne has been offered a place at Cambridge to study land economy and Gabriella is to study maths at Imperial College, London.


Stars shine through in mainstream schools

By Craig Silver, August 21, 2008

Jewish students at mainstream schools around the country also produced outstanding results in their A levels.

Shaun and Ollie Newton, who attend Merchant Taylors' School for Boys in Northwood, Middlesex, both achieved A-level marks for fine art that put them in the top five in the UK.


500 attend funeral of backpacker

By Lee Lixenberg, August 21, 2008

More than 500 people attended the funeral of Sarah Bond, the 23-year-old Essex woman who was killed in a quad-bike accident in New Zealand.

In an emotional tribute to Miss Bond, her father, Jack, 55, described his daughter as an eshet chayil - a woman of worth - and praised her determination and love of life.

Miss Bond died when her bike plunged 150ft down a steep incline near the Waitomo Caves on the county's North Island. She was 10 days into a 10-month backpacking trip.


TV lawyer bailed over poisoning claims

By Marcus Dysch, August 21, 2008

A high-profile divorce lawyer and TV pundit has been arrested for allegedly lying to police about a plot to poison her.

Vanessa Lloyd Platt, whose North London-based company, Lloyd Platt & Co, is one of the UK's leading family-law and divorce firms, regularly appears on shows including GMTV and Richard & Judy to discuss celebrity separations.


Home Office acts on child neglect case

By Marcus Dysch, August 21, 2008

Immigration officials have told the JC this week that solving the case of two Israeli children who entered Britain unaccompanied was a "top priority".

The sister and brother, aged 12 and nine, have been in the care of social services for more than a month while attempts are made to organise their repatriation.

They were sent to Britain by their mother, a 38-year-old Russian-born Israeli, who was later arrested by Tel Aviv police on suspicion of neglect.


This caps it all: free dry-cleaning for your Yomtov kippah

By Candice Krieger, August 21, 2008

Here is a new Yomtov anxiety, to add to cleaning the house for your relatives' approval, and agonising over just the right shul outfit. Is your kippah as clean as it should be?

Now the largest chain of independent dry-cleaners in London is offering a solution to the stress of grubby kippahs. It is offering to dry-clean them for free.

Julian Stone, founder of the American Dry Cleaning Company, says he expects a round 30,000 people to take up his offer on September 1.


Knife raiders rob boutique in 7 seconds

By Marcus Dysch, August 14, 2008

Staff at an exclusive boutique were threatened with a knife during the latest raid on stores at the heart of a Jewish community.

A balaclava-clad gang stole a dozen handbags worth a total of around £10,000 during Monday's lightning robbery at Larizia in Temple Fortune, North-West London.

An attempted break-in also took place 100 yards away at another Jewish business, Genevieve, days earlier.