The government failed to take any account of the impact on disabled pupils of its “discriminatory” plans to expand grammar schools in England, say campaigners.A government consultation paper published this week, Schools That Work For Everyone, includes plans to remove the ban on opening new grammar schools in England.But there is not a single mention of disabled pupils in the consultation paper, and the Department for Education (DfE) has failed to carry out an equality impact assessment of its proposals.Inclusive education campaigners say that expanding grammar schools – secondary schools which select pupils via an entrance test – will discriminate against disabled children and lead to more segregated education in special schools.And they say the plans are a clear breach of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, with new UN guidance making it clear that all segregated education should end and be replaced by “inclusive classroom teaching in accessible learning environments with appropriate supports”.There are currently 163 grammar schools in England, educating about five per cent of state secondary pupils, while 10 local authorities have wholly selective education systems and another 26 have one or more grammar schools in their area.Laws currently ban any new selective schools and prevent existing non-selective schools from becoming selective, but prime minister Theresa May – and education secretary Justine Greening – want to expand existing grammar schools, create new selective schools and allow non-selective schools to become selective.They say this will only be allowed if “action to expand existing selective schools or establish new selective schools is accompanied at the same time by support to ensure good quality non-selective places locally”.But The Alliance for Inclusive Education (ALLFIE) said the policy of increasing selective schools, and the consultation paper itself, discriminate against disabled children.It highlighted DfE’s failure to carry out an assessment of the impact of the policy on disabled children and other groups protected under the Equality Act 2010.ALLFIE said the consultation paper was “an onslaught on disabled children and young people’s social mobility, and on their parents’ rights to choose a good mainstream school placement”.Simone Aspis (pictured), ALLFIE’s policy and campaigns coordinator, said the consultation paper was “obviously discriminatory”.She said: “They obviously have not thought about what the implications are for disabled children.“For disabled children and their families, it means less choice and more segregation.“What will happen is more and more disabled children are going to be forced into segregated education provision.”ALLFIE pointed out that disabled children with education, health and care plans (EHCPs) or statements of special educational needs represent only 0.1 per cent of grammar school pupils, despite making up 1.8 per cent of the secondary school population.And disabled children without statements or EHCPs make up only 4.2 per cent of grammar school pupils, but 12.4 per cent of all secondary school pupils.ALLFIE said the government’s existing education policies over the last six years had led to a steady increase in the number of disabled children being educated in special schools.Aspis said: “If mainstream schools become selective, where will disabled children go?“They will have no choice other than to attend a special school against their own and their parents’ wishes, which is scandalous, especially if the prime minister talks about creating one nation.“This government has ratified the United Nations Convention on Persons with Disabilities, including article 24 that makes it clear that disabled children’s access to mainstream education is a human right and that an education system that separates and segregates disabled children is a violation of their right to mainstream education.”When a DfE spokesman was asked by Disability News Service about the failure to mention disabled pupils in the consultation paper, he said: “The top line is schools that work for everyone, that’s the point. When we talk about everyone we [mean] everyone.”He refused to answer a series of questions about the alleged discriminatory nature of the consultation paper, why DfE had failed to carry out an equality impact assessment, and whether the policy would lead to greater segregation of disabled pupils in special schools.Instead, he said the consultation paper “looks at how every child should have access to a good education. As such, that should be understood to include those with special educational needs and disabilities.”He added in a statement: “Every child, regardless of background or ability, should have access to an excellent education.“We know that grammar schools provide a good education for their disadvantaged pupils and we want more pupils from lower income backgrounds to benefit from that.“Our proposals will ensure that any new and existing selective schools will prioritise the admission of disadvantaged pupils and that they support other local pupils in non-selective schools to help drive up educational outcomes.“As set out in the consultation document, we are clear that relaxing restrictions on selective education can and should be to the betterment, not at the expense, of other local schools.”
FIVE St Helens youngsters have been selected to form part of the England Academy Squad to face the Australian Institute of Sport on Sunday, December 4 at Leigh Sports Village (3.00pm)Danny Yates, Dom Speakman, Greg Richards (pictured), Greg Wilde and Mark Percival have all been named by Academy head coach Dave Elliott in the 21-strong squad and they are joined by players from nine other Engage Super League clubs.Saints have the largest contingent in the squad, with five youngsters represented while Bradford are close behind with four representatives and Warrington with three. Wigan Warriors and Leeds Rhinos both have two players in the squad while Hull FC, Harlequins RL, Huddersfield Giants, Widnes Vikings and Wakefield Wildcats all have one player each selected.“We’re all looking forward to what lies in store and the players themselves are excited about the test,” said Elliott. “It’s a different challenge for us. We played against France in the summer but this will be a different type of test and we’ll be going up against a team, which I’m sure will have lots of quality.“We had some good experiences against France when we played them and to cap the year off with a win against the AIS is something the lads would all like to do. They all want to finish the season on a high and this game is a great opportunity to do that.“But this is also a great test for the players. This game offers the guys a great opportunity to prove themselves at this level and gives us, as coaches, an opportunity to see how they have developed through the season.”Elliott led the England Academy to a 2-0 series win over the Australian Schoolboys last December, but he’s keen to point out that the achievements of the past will have no bearing on this squad and that the game against the AIS will be an exciting one for everyone involved.“Playing at this level gives the players a platform for them to launch their careers from,” he said. “The success of some of last year’s squad in taking the next step showed that this is a stage to progress from.“However last year’s results are history because this is a different squad. We’re not worrying about last year, the focus is on what’s coming ahead.”England Academy U17 Squad:Ben Curry (Warrington Wolves)Connor Farrell (Wigan Warriors)Connor Spencer (Bradford Bulls)Danny Yates (St Helens)Dom Speakman (St Helens)George Williams (Wigan Warriors)Greg Richards (St Helens)Greg Wilde (St Helens)Jack Cockerham (Bradford Bulls)Jack Owens (Widnes Vikings)James Cunningham (Hull FC)James Saltonstall (Warrington Wolves)John Bateman (Bradford Bulls)Jordan Baldwinson (Leeds Rhinos)Josh Johnson (Huddersfield Giants)Liam McAvoy (Bradford Bulls)Mark Percival (St Helens)Mike Learmonth (Warrington Wolves)Mike McMeekan (Harlequins RL)Sam Doherty (Wakefield Trinity Wildcats)Stevie Ward (Leeds Rhinos)
SAINTS have announced their squad for Sunday’s Super League XVIII Round 2 match at Widnes Vikings.Ade Gardner and Anthony Walker are dual registered with Whitehaven this weekend whilst Alex Walmsley is also expected to play with Batley.The squad is:1. Paul Wellens, 2. Ade Gardner, 3. Jordan Turner, 4. Sia Soliola, 5. Francis Meli, 6. Lance Hohaia, 7. Jonny Lomax, 8. Josh Perry, 9. James Roby, 10. Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook, 11. Tony Puletua, 12. Jon Wilkin, 13. Willie Manu, 14. Anthony Laffranchi, 15. Mark Flanagan, 19. Josh Jones, 20. Lee Gaskell, 21. Tommy Makinson, 24. Joe Greenwood.Denis Betts will choose his Widnes side from:1. Shaun Briscoe, 2. Willie Isa, 3. Cameron Phelps, 4. Stefan Marsh, 7. Rhys Hanbury, 8. Ben Cross, 9. Jon Clarke, 10. Steve Pickersgill, 11. Frank Winterstein, 12. Dave Allen, 13. Hep Cahill, 14. Joe Mellor, 16. Eamon O’Carroll, 18. Lloyd White, 20. Paddy Flynn, 22. Gareth Hock, 23. Phil Joseph, 24. Macgraff Leuluai, 25. Alex Gerrard.The game kicks off at 3pm and the referee is James Child.Ticket details are here.Stat Pack:Widnes are seeking their first Super League victory against St Helens on Sunday afternoon.St Helens have won the last 15 games between the sides (eight away fixtures), with Widnes’ last victory coming at home, 20-17 in the Stones Bitter Championship, on April 4, 1994.Super League Summary:Widnes won 0St Helens won 11Ups and Downs:Widnes highest losing score: 23-24 (H, 2012)St Helens highest score: 62-0 (H, 2012) (also widest margin)
CONNOR Dwyer has joined Barrow Raiders on loan for a month.The 19-year-old back rower has played two games on dual registration this season and has made the move to gain regular game time.Connor signed from Portico, where he was coached by his dad – Saints legend Bernard Dwyer.
IT’S the derby this evening with Saints seeking to readdress the balance following their loss at Wigan on Good Friday.Last 10 Meetings:Wigan 12, St Helens 4 (SLR8, 3/4/15)St Helens 14, Wigan 6 (SLGF, 11/10/14) (at Old Trafford, Manchester)Wigan 12, St Helens 16 (SLR18, 27/6/14)St Helens 14, Wigan 33 (SLR9, 18/4/14)St Helens 22, Wigan 16 (SLR22, 22/7/13)Wigan 28, St Helens 16 (SLR9, 29/3/13)Wigan 18, St Helens 26 (SLR27, 7/9/12)St Helens 16, Wigan 42 (SLR15, 27/5/12) (at Etihad Stadium, Manchester)Wigan 18, St Helens 4 (CCQF, 12/5/12)St Helens 10, Wigan 28 (SLR10, 6/4/12)Super League Summary:St Helens won 30 (includes wins in 2000 and 2014 Grand Finals & wins in 2000, 2002, 2009 and 2011 play-offs)Wigan won 32 (includes win in 2010 Grand Final & wins in 2001, 2003 and 2004 play-offs)4 drawsHighs and Lows:St Helens highest score: 57-16 (MM, 2008) (also widest margin)Wigan highest score: 65-12 (A, 1997) (also widest margin)Career Milestones:Jon Wilkin needs two tries to reach a career century of touchdowns. His total of 98 has been scored as follows: 8 for Hull KR (2000-2002), 89 for St Helens (2003-2015) and 1 for England (2004-2005, 2008-2009 & 2011-2012). Wilkin also made 6 non-scoring appearances for Great Britain (2006-2007).Winning Runs:St Helens have won their last four matches. Their last defeat was 33-26 at Catalans Dragons on May 9.Consecutive Appearances:Mose Masoe has the longest run of consecutive appearances amongst Super League players, with 48.He made his Saints debut as a substitute in a 38-18 win against Hull KR at Langtree Park on March 7, 2014. He is an ever-present in the St Helens side since then.1 Mose Masoe (St Helens) 482 Danny Washbrook (Wakefield Trinity Wildcats) 403 Elliott Whitehead (Catalans Dragons) 364 Jermaine McGillvary (Huddersfield Giants) 335 = Paul Aiton (Leeds Rhinos), Chris Hill (Warrington Wolves) 32First Utility Super League Leading ScorersTries:1 Joe Burgess (Wigan Warriors) 172 Tom Lineham (Hull FC) 153 Tommy Makinson (St Helens) 134 = Jordan Turner (St Helens), Dominic Manfredi (Wigan Warriors) 126 = Zeb Taia (Catalans Dragons), Kieran Dixon (Hull Kingston Rovers), Kevin Brown (Widnes Vikings) 119 = Albert Kelly (Hull Kingston Rovers), Ken Sio (Hull Kingston Rovers), Kallum Watkins (Leeds Rhinos), Ben Currie (Warrington Wolves) 10Goals:1 Scott Dureau (Catalans Dragons) 552 Danny Brough (Huddersfield Giants) 533 = Kevin Sinfield (Leeds Rhinos), Matty Smith (Wigan Warriors) 525 Luke Gale (Castleford Tigers) 516 Josh Mantellato (Hull Kingston Rovers) 487 Stefan Ratchford (Warrington Wolves) 378 = Jack Owens (Widnes Vikings), Marc Sneyd (Hull FC) 3410 Josh Griffin (Salford Red Devils) 29Goals Percentage:1 Kevin Sinfield (Leeds Rhinos) 85.24 (52/61)2 Danny Tickle (Widnes Vikings) 84.61 (11/13)3 Tommy Makinson (St Helens) 82.60 (19/23)4 Scott Dureau (Catalans Dragons) 79.71 (55/69)5 Danny Brough (Huddersfield Giants) 76.81 (53/69)6 Luke Gale (Castleford Tigers) 75.00 (51/68)7 Josh Griffin (Salford Red Devils) 72.50 (29/40)8 Craig Hall (Wakefield Trinity Wildcats) 71.05 (27/38)9 Josh Mantellato (Hull Kingston Rovers) 70.58 (48/68)10 Marc Sneyd (Hull FC) 69.38 (34/49)Points:1 Josh Mantellato (Hull Kingston Rovers) 1322 Luke Gale (Castleford Tigers) 1273 Danny Brough (Huddersfield Giants) 1204 = Kevin Sinfield (Leeds Rhinos), Matty Smith (Wigan Warriors) 1186 Scott Dureau (Catalans Dragons) 1167 Stefan Ratchford (Warrington Wolves) 948 Jack Owens (Widnes Vikings) 929 Tommy Makinson (St Helens) 9010 Marc Sneyd (Hull FC) 84
That was one of the thoughts of Saints Head Coach Justin Holbrook after Saints’ 38-18 win over Widnes at the Magic Weekend.“People don’t give Widnes enough credit,” he said. “I know they haven’t been winning but I watched last week’s game and they were unlucky not to beat Leeds in the Cup. If they had done then it would have been a different week for us.“We came here knowing they hadn’t be winning games and everyone had automatically given us the win. That can make it hard for players.“I thought at half time it was really close but in the second half I thought we really dominated and came away with a good win.”He continued: “Regan Grace and Danny Richardson both played well for us today – and I thought Dom Peyroux had his best game for us. He set a really high standard which was great.“When you come to this venue you want to play the best game you can as a player. Obviously we did that last year and everyone sets high standards but you cannot hit those every week. I am happy to get the win.”
Year 10 Keiron Cunningham Final: De La Salle 23 – 22 St. Cuthbert’sThe Year 10 Final was a fantastic spectacle for all that attended. De La Salle struck first with a fantastic kick to the wing that was finished with ease and that set them on their way to a 22-6 half-time lead.There oppenents, St. Cuthbert’s, made a real fight of it in the second half and scored a number of tries down the left hand side to level the game at 22–22. After a grueling arm wrestle in the final 20 minutes it was De La Salle that seized their opportunity kicking a last minute drop goal to win the Keiron Cunningham Final in dramatic fashion.Fresh from signing his Saints contract, the Keiron Cunningham trophy was presented by first team player Aaron Smith, who knows all about junior rugby league having started his career playing for at Blackbrook ARLFC.Year 11 Alex Murphy Final: De La Salle 24 – 16 Haydock HighThe Year 11 final was an incredibly competitive game with both teams looking like they would come out on top, but it was Haydock High who took an early lead after a De La Salle knock on. Both teams then went over for tries, but on the half time hooter De La Salle scored a fantastic length of the field score to lead 18–12 at the break.It was all De La Salle in the second half as back to back tries gave them a comfortable lead with the score at 24-12. To their credit though, Haydock scored a fantastic late try, however it wasn’t enough in the end as De La Salle took home their second trophy of the day.Awards were presented by the man himself, club legend Alex Murphy. Alex was regarded as one of the greatest half backs in the history of the British game. He represented Great Britain in 27 tests and made 370 appearances and scored 175 tries for Saints at his time at the club. We would like to thank Alex for his time at the School Finals.Steve Leonard, Saints Community Development Foundation Director paid credit to all teams.“We are looking at mirroring the success of our Saints first team by replicating this in schools rugby league. The standard of rugby league in both cup finals at the Totally Wicked Stadium last Thursday was fantastic and it was great to see both games played in good spirits. We are now looking forward to the Year 7 and 8 Finals next week which I am sure again will highlight the standard of rugby league in our town.“Saints Community Development Foundation would like to thank all teachers, volunteers, players and parents for making this year’s cup competition the standard that it is today. We look forward to working with teams that reach the regional and national stages soon with a view to profiling St. Helens’ school’s rugby league on the biggest stage of all.”Our next batch of Schools Finals take place next Tuesday the 14th May 2019 with the Year 7 Final kicking off at 4pm for the Paul Wellens trophy before the Year 8’s kick off at 5:30pm for the Eric Chisnall trophy.