BBC News school report


2017 news season is upon us and our budding reporters from year 8 and 9 have been working hard from the HGS news room to research and write their own stories reporting on current issues and news. Today is BBC School Report News Day where the reporters be working round the clock throughout the school day to bring the latest news and events to you.

How do Children with Disabilities Still Play Sports?

By Rose Forrest

Interview with Liz Smith – physiotherapist for children with life threatening illnesses such as cancer.

Cancer can be terrible and extremely frightening for children our age or younger. So, what helps children mentally and physically with life threating diseases like cancer? Well, the answer is sport so to find out more we interviewed Liz Smith, a physiotherapist for cancer and amputations.

Liz explained to us what her job actually did to help children with life threatening diseases: “I treat children and teenagers who have a cancer diagnoses.” She stated to us that the most common problems I treat are actually caused by cancer itself or a side effect from a treatment that they have received. Also, we asked why she thought that participation in sports is important for young people who have had treatment. Smith defined that, “Sports and activities help strengthen bones and muscles and improve metabolism. Sport is also a good way to socialise and make new friends”.

Another aspect of her job is to try and get the children to try different sports. “The children can participate in any sport that they want to do. The most important thing is that they are motivated to participate then adaptions can be made.” Smith described. Adaptions and challenges have to be made to help the children take part in sport though. “We encourage our patients to avoid contact sports as it makes them at risk of bleeding and bruising if they fell. Not all children can go swimming either because of infection,” Liz told us. She also explained that other patients struggle to gain confidence because it had been so long since they had last been able to do sport.

Finally, we requested for her to tell us any stories she had of any young patients she had worked with that had gone on to play sport at a high level. Liz explained: “I am very proud of all my patients and it doesn’t have to be big in order for it to be an achievement”. Smith defined that one young lady started training with the Paralympic team but unfortunately became unwell so she had to stop. Another inspirational achievement was a young girl who has a brain tumour and managed to achieve a swimming badge which was incredible because she could hardly walk let alone swim!

So, this inspiring interview suggests to us that it does not matter if you have a disability or disease, you can still do sport. Everyone can achieve something and it just shows that nothing is ever out of reach.

Have We Really Gained Equality in Sport?

Currently, the Equality Act tries to fight for equality throughout everybody’s life, however in actual fact we are far from equality in sports. There are many different things that cause inequalities in the sporting industry such as race, gender, disability and financial stability. The Equality Act works across all areas of socio-economic inequalities to attempt to bring equality to all areas of life.

Unfortunately, in sport there are many issues around equality and ensuring all people can get involved. Current problems consist of less funding for women’s sport, for example the budget difference between the Women’s Premier League and the Men’s Premier League is massive, this results in women not being paid to be a full time footballer; they have to have a job other than football to be able to live. This inequality begins a long time before the premier league though. Less funding is available for local and community female teams and groups.

Sport is not only dominated by males but by white male men. White men dominate the sporting industry from a young age meaning they make contacts in sporting networks where black youngsters cannot.

In order to combat these inequalities Sport England has been working to ensure that everyone has equal opportunities, which has resulted in equality policies being put in place. If clubs do not adhere to these policies they do not gain funding.

Thank you to Dr. Rankin-Wright for sharing her knowledge on this important subject.

Interview with Libby Fox

We have interviewed Libby, a talented cricketer from Harrogate Grammar who plays for the school boys team and the Yorkshire U14 girls team.

How long have you been doing cricket?

Since the age of 4 or 5. I got inspired from it on the TV.

Is there any gender inequalities?

People assume that because I’m a girl, I’m not very good at it and obviously at school there are only boys that do it so there isn’t an equal spread. Boys generally have a stronger throw and are better batters so generally their play is at a higher level and therefore girls are less encouraged to play because they don’t see as many professional girl cricketers. Especially with media representation.

If another girl started, how would the boys react?

I think it would be OK as long as they’re good.

Why do you play for the boys team at school?

Because there isn’t a girls team.

Do you think there should be a girls team?

Yes, I think it would be a good idea because girls might discover that they might enjoy it and it will give them opportunity to start without the pressure of boys watching.

Do you think PE lessons should be integrated?


Do you think cricket should be mixed?

I don’t think it should be mixed because I think the boys would take over and not let the girls have a say. I think some of the boys might get fed up if the girls didn’t do it properly.

Leicester Quarter Final

Written by Roan Clawson

On Tuesday, something incredible occurred.

Unbelievable. Utterly mind-blowing!

Leicester City, yes Leicester! Not Man United or City or Arsenal or Liverpool, Leicester City are through to the quarter-finals of the Champions League – the most elite European competition! 2-0 was the famous scoreline against a Sevilla team that had won 3 Europa League cups in a row previously.


Wes Morgan – a rock solid Jamaican defender who captained Leicester to premier league victory last season – scored an early goal to settle the nerves kneeing in from 6 yards via a free-kick. Later on Marc Albrighton added a second, smashing in from just inside the box. Tempers rose as the tension within the Sevilla team reached boiling point as Samir Nasri, their creative midfielder on loan from Manchester City, was sent off for his second yellow card when he head-butted star striker Jamie Vardy. Angered by this decision Sevilla boss Jorge Sampaoli shouted out and as a result was sent to the stands by the referee. Even though the Spanish team were hindered by this, there was still a twist in the tale as Sevilla were awarded a penalty after winger Vitolo was fouled by keeper Kasper Schmeichel. Steven N’zonzi – a former Blackburn Rovers and Stoke City central midfielder – stepped up to take the pen having his team missed their last three penalties before the game. This was no different as Leicester’s Danish keeper dived to his left to save the tame effort. Leicester fans exploded in elation with the cauldron of noise urging their team to victory.

Famously, they won, defying all the odds once again just like they did last season. After the disappointment over the sacking of everyone’s favourite uncle Claudio Ranieri, after this brilliant result Leicester fans have to reconsider whether or not it was right.

Coming up this summer….

Special Olympics is a worldwide movement of people, which establishes a new world of inclusion and community, where each individual is accepted and included, irrespective of their abilities or disabilities. We help to make the world  better, healthier and more joyful.


As the biggest international sport movement for people with intellectual disabilities Special Olympics worldwide offers all year round training and competition opportunities in 32 different olympic disciplines for more than 4.2 million athletes in 170 countries.

These disciplines (respectively with their set of rules and regulations) are arranged in a way that allows as many people with intellectual disabilities as possible to participate and, in accordance with their disability, to compete with other athletes with the approximate same ability level.

“Special Olympics International“ was founded by Eunice Kennedy Shriver in 1968 and has its seat in Washington/USA. From this headquarter Special Olympics International coordinates the national Special Olympics programmes.

Benefits of Participating

To investigate student’s views about the benefits of getting involved in sports, we interviewed some sporty people, including Emma Marlow a year 8 student and Toby Parsons, a year 9 student, both from Harrogate Grammar School.

When interviewing Toby, we asked him about his recent successes in show jumping. Show jumping is a mix of individual and team competitions, which they won. He believes that team sports teaches you to be determined for what you want, and it also teaches you to work as a team which is very important in later life when working.

We also spoke to Marlow who is a great sportswoman but plays predominantly boys sports. These include cricket and golf, these are usually associated with males. When asked “Emma, do you think it is beneficial to take part in different sports?” She expressed her opinion on the sociable side of playing sport, “you get to meet interesting and unique people.” She currently plays cricket, golf, football, athletics and hockey.

When we asked, “Do you think sport is equal in terms of girls and boys” she replied saying that it should be equal but it isn’t. Going onto a more personal level she says she sometimes finds it difficult being the odd one out but all in all she enjoys participating in all these sports.

Overall, participating in sports is very rewarding and all people should take part in something.

Why does sport matter?

By Rose Forrest and Alexis Whitaker

Sport is a varied occupation. You may not like sport but you also may not have found the sport that suits you. Sport isn’t just about the most commonly known games, such as Football or Gymnastics. There are many different sports including: fishing, walking and even BMX racing! They all have different levels of commitment.

After interviewing Sassy Palfreman, who swims for Harrogate District Swimming Club and who is currently 2nd in Yorkshire for 50m freestyle, and Mrs Barker a physical education teacher from Harrogate Grammar School, we uncovered information on why many children of 12-13 years of age decide to stop sports.

Mrs Barker is a long standing member of staff who has been very active in running many extra-curricular sports. She explained that : “ friendship groups and body image are the main reasons why many girls quit sport.” She also stated that many girls, as they hit puberty are driven away from sports from embarrassment of their body image”. Results from the survey of the students who do enjoy sports, also shows that only 40% of the students do sports most nights a week and 10% of the students don’t do sport at all because they don’t have time.
Another point that Mrs Barker suggested to us was that: “We are (as a school) one of the leading schools with most girls who are active and take part in sport. Also, in a school, the sport has to be fun to take part in”. But, sport can be taken to a completely different level and one girl, in our school, demonstrates this.

Luckily, we managed to get an interview with Sassy who explained to us about the commitment and determination needed to reach her goals. Palfreman spoke to us about how she swims 6-7 times a week which is between 12-14 hours of intense training. Also, 4am starts are common for Sassy as this is the time she must wake up for training most mornings. “When you’re swimming, you need to be prepared to leave social life and dedicate time to sport if you want to reach the top,” Sassy stated. She also told us that “Swimming in the local swimming club is a solid 9 or 10 in commitment. As the pool is often occupied by others, it is crucial that you must get in the pool when you can.”

As well as that, we managed to catch one of our Year 8 hockey players, Joseph Harris who is currently training for the North of England tournament to qualify for the National Finals. Joe explained to us why he thought that many children his age stopped sport: “Many children don’t enjoy sport as much these days because video games have been introduced so when they start to play them, they become obsessed”. One idea that he had to encourage more people to start sport, was to conjoin video games and sport together.

So, sport can come in all different levels of commitment and whether you are currently 2nd in Yorkshire for swimming or training for the North of England hockey tournament, everyone can be involved in sport no matter what.

Sensational School Swimmer

By Roan, Carter and Reuben

To continue our investigations in sport and the benefits of taking part, we’ve interviewed one of our students, Sassy Palfreman, who gives up a lot of her time dedicated to sports, especially swimming. She is extremely dedicated to her sport, she is a prime example of the student who goes the extra mile; you may think that you too are very committed to sports as 40% of the people we’ve interviewed do sport most nights a week, however Sassy goes the extra mile in terms of commitment.

In terms of Sassy’s commitment, she usually does 12-14 hours of swimming per week. She says that you “need a solid 9 or 10” on level of commitment in swimming otherwise you’re aren’t going to succeed much. She also says, “you miss out on a lot of your social life because when people invite you to things you have to say: “Oh no, sorry I’ve got to go to swimming…”” This is the difference between people the 40% of our students who enjoy getting involved, and go most of the time, and people such as Sassy who is 2nd in Yorkshire for swimming. To succeed at that level takes an incredible amount of dedication.

How much do our students care about sports?

By Ruby Johnson and Ruby Rainbow

Playing sport and getting involved in activities key part of growing up. It’s vital for fitness and health, socialising and for learning essential teamwork skills and throughout our school lives we are encouraged to take part. But are there any improvements to be made?

We did a survey with one hundred 12-15 year olds in our local area to see if sporting activities are being taken part in and why or why not. We found that 40% of the children said they played sports most nights a week but a shocking 10% said they don’t have the opportunity.


It is encouraging that almost half of the students we asked are getting involved and we were wondering what attracted them to the sports. 30% said it was simply because they enjoy it, with other answers being because of friendships and to keep healthy. This is great news for schools and sports clubs although it is worrying that so many young people aren’t aware of these benefits. When asked if aware of the extra-curricular activities in the community, 35% said they didn’t know what they could take part in but perhaps would consider joining if there was more information. Maybe we should rethink the way we advertise sporting activities.

As well as these findings, we also researched into what else we could improve within sports and PE. 42% of the students we asked said that longer lessons would improve the quality and ensure they can really get involved. They say that a 1 hour session is not enough for them to get going and that extra time would mean they enjoyed it more. They also said that a wider variety of sports within school would encourage them take part in more and that fixture against other teams and schools would mean they can enhance their skills.

It’s great that lots of people within school are getting involved and also really brilliant that people want to take part in more activities! Our results conclude that people do know the health positives of playing sports and are aware of the many other benefits but perhaps we need to concentrate on improving the quality of activities within school in order to inspire people before considering that of those out of school.

Sutton Town in the FA Cup

By Roan

Sutton Town – a non-league team sitting in 16th place in their respective league – were drawn against a footballing giant that is Leeds United – who are 83 places above them in English football.

Winning the famous FA cup once and the old division one three times Leeds is a club laden with history winning their honours mostly in the 80’s and 90’s. With legends like Gary Speed, Alan Smith, Tony Yeboah and Jimmy Floyd Hasslebank in their history, they have been through some recent turmoil, even dropping to league one (the third division) in 2007. Back in the championship (the second division) they are high flying in 4th, hoping to return to the premier league.

Back to Sutton, they are a traditional non-league side, sometimes having a cup run, but generally staying put. Situated in south London, they have a passionate support and their team reached the fourth round of the FA cup, an incredible feat for a non-league club.

On this day, Sutton unbelievably prevailed, beating the championship giants 1-0 due to a second half penalty from number 6 Jaimie Collins.

In the 82nd minute Leeds’s Liam Cooper received a second yellow card resulting in him having an early bath. After this all Sutton had to do was hold out, and they did, becoming only the 9th team to reach the 5th round of the FA cup.

This year they are alongside fellow non-league team Lincoln City, who beat Brighton 3-1. Hitherto two non-league teams have never reached the FA cup 5th round.

Alp Avalanche

By Carter

Unfortunately, places like the Alps have a reputation for claiming lives through extreme sport
accidents or avalanches, especially in the Winter. In 2015, from January to June 100 deaths were recorded. On the 12th of February at 10:30am local time an avalanche hit Tignes, which ended up claiming 4 lives, one of them being an instructor. This incident was said to be a “slab avalanche” where a group of packed snow fractures and the snow below it cannot hold the weight.

The victims of the avalanche at Tignes were reported to be a 48-year-old French man, his 15-yearold son and the teenager’s 19-year-old half-brother, according to the emergency services.

It is said that if a victim can be rescued within 18 minutes the chance of survival is 91%. However, burials between 19-35 minutes drops the chance of survival to around 34%. The most common causes of death after an avalanche occurs are suffocation, wounds and hypothermia.

Models Defying Stereotypes

By Ruby and Ruby

Whilst Kendall Jenner, Gigi Hadid and Cara Delevingne are what our modern eyes are used to seeing on the front of our magazines, a new wave of beauty is making its way forward.
As our times are changing, the stereotypical model is too. No longer will we expect white, skinny and supposedly perfect girls to headline beauty brands but a new type.

Down syndrome model Madeline Stewart recently produced her own popular fashion line. Albino Models are also making news as Jewell Jeffrey takes the world by storm. Valentine
Sampaio looked stunning as the first transgender women on the cover of a recent edition
of French vogue.

Tyra Banks said ‘Girls of all kinds can be beautiful- from the thin, plus-sized, short, very tall, ebony to porcelain skinned; the quirky, clumsy, shy, outgoing and all in between.’

New York fashion week featured several women who survived breast cancer in an alternative lingerie show for charity. Their bravery inspired thousands.

Adele vs Beyoncé: owner of Grammy award?

By Rose and Alexis

The night of the Grammy awards should have been a night to remember. Now people are remembering the moment when Adele made history on stage.

After being selected to win the Best Album of the year, she tearfully confessed that Beyoncé was her idol and that she was in better position to win the trophy. She then snapped the trophy in half, giving Beyoncé her Grammy award whilst onlookers were shocked with the outcome of what should have been an easy award.

Adele later took home 5 awards, including song of the year whilst Beyoncé took home best rural album with lemonade.

Italian Avalanche sparks questions for country’s safety

By Alexis

On 18th January, 2017, the Italian hotel (Hotel Rigopiano) was struck by an avalanche, thought to be triggered by an earthquake beforehand. This freak avalanche left the hotel unprepared and vulnerable. There were 58 people in the hotel in the Italian Alps at the time and 17 have been confirmed dead so far. However, the country has a new symbol of hope after three small white puppies were discovered in the ruins of the hotel on Jan 23rd, nearly a week after the avalanche struck, along with a man who told reporters how he survived for a week by eating snow.

The news of this disaster raises the question for our own safety. Are we really prepared for natural disasters of our own? The 2014 Christmas floods were just the second major disaster that hit the country on the coasts of south England and 10 000 people were asked to evacuate their homes after 21 severe flood warnings were distributed.
Our country is now producing new ideas but will they work to help protect our country against future events similar to this? Would flood barriers be a good idea, or would using natural resources be a better solution? Would this help decrease the potential risk of any more catastrophes?

Where do your clothes come from?

By Ruby

Whilst our view on sweatshops are of third world country’s paying people
pennies for our cheap clothes here in the U.K. however there’s high street brands using sweatshops in our country, supposedly a land of equality and workers’ rights. Big brands like New Look, River Island, Boohoo, Primark and Missguided are accused of using sweatshops based in the UK.

But what actually is a sweatshop?
A sweatshop is where the workers are paid half the national minimum wage, 1 or more blocked fire escape, disgusting facilities, dangerous, pressurised sweatshop conditions, workers exhorted to work faster under threat of the sack.

Why do we are consumers let this happen?
We as a nation are obsessed with fast, fast food, fast media and fast clothing. Next day delivery and cheap clothing are what give brands like boohoo and misguided the edge for shoppers. 16-21 year olds are the culprits for funding these brands, looking for party pieces to ‘wear once and then throw to the back of the wardrobe.’

An undercover for channel 4 shows that most workers are getting £3 – £4 per hour. However, if we get rid of them then these brands may just convert to a sweatshop in a 3rd world country. So we as consumers need to make sure we know where our clothes are actually coming from.

Are you willing to pay more for workers’ rights and moral dignity?


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