Fraud probe Glendene Arts Academy criticised by Ofsted inspectors

Glendene Academy Glendene became an academy in September 2012

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A County Durham school at the centre of a fraud inquiry has been placed in special measures after inspectors highlighted a catalogue of failings.

Three people are currently on bail after being arrested by detectives investigating the alleged fraud at Glendene Arts Academy in Easington.

The arrests followed a Department for Education report, which highlighted alleged irregularities at the school.

Ofsted inspectors said teaching and governance were "inadequate".

Glendene, which became an academy in September 2012, caters for pupils aged from two to 19, who have varying degrees of special needs.

Inspectors, who visited the school on two days in June, described the standard of teaching as "weak", resulting in pupils making "inadequate progress."

Profound difficulties

Their report added: "There are serious and widespread weaknesses in the effectiveness of leaders and managers, including the governing body.

"Teachers' planning is weak. They do not have an accurate picture of pupils' skills, knowledge and understanding upon which to set challenging work.

"This weakness is most apparent for pupils who have the most profound learning difficulties, who often have to wait lengthy periods for a member of staff to work with them."

The school said it was working with the Department for Education and Durham County Council to achieve improvements, and with Durham Police on the "complex" fraud investigation.

A spokesman for Durham Police said: "All those arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to commit fraud remain on bail until mid-October."

Earlier this year the academy was ordered to repay more than £162,000 of taxpayers' cash paid to a private firm.

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    Defeat will cost £60,000 16:26: Matthew Raisbeck BBC Newcastle

    More than 2,500 Sunderland fans who made the long trip to Southampton on Saturday to see the Black Cats lose 8-0, will be able to claim back the £24 cost of admission, or have the sum donated to city-based children's hospice Grace House instead.


    It's a move that will cost the players of the Premier League side collectively about £60,000.

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    Kevin Sheedy

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    People at a meeting

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    Barnard Castle Fire Station

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    Crathorne Hall fire

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    BBC Newcastle studio

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    • BBC Tees: Construction work is progressing on the new multimillon-pound waste-to-energy plant on Teesside which it's hoped will generate enough electricity to power more than 60,000 homes.
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    Wolverhampton Wanderers v Middlesbrough 10:32:

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    Lee Tomlin

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    Give us your feedback 10:22:

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    'Quad station' for emergency services 10:10: Stephanie Finnon BBC Newcastle

    A new "quad station" housing four emergency services in one place is to be built in County Durham.

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    Why don't more of us eat rabbit? More of us eating it could mean lower food costs. I'll be finding out what it tastes like.

    European rabbit (c) Pete Cairns /

    Call BBC Tees on 01642 225 511 or join the conversation on Facebook.

    'Teach parents to cuddle kids' 09:31: The Mirror

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    Flies blamed for stately home fire 09:21: The Gazette Newspaper

    Smouldering dead flies from an electric fly-killer have been blamed for the fire that raged through Crathorne Hall.

    Crathorne Hall
    Why do we feel the force of hurricanes? 09:04: John Hammond BBC Weather
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    The top local headlines at 09:00 include:

    Gales forecast 08:47:

    The Met Office has issued "be aware" warnings, with gales forecast for much of the UK, while BBC Weather says heavy rain is already spreading across many areas.

    Weather map
    A19 has one lane closed 08:35:
    Behind the scenes 08:28: Anthony Day BBC Newcastle

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    Working the same duties as regular police officers, special constables volunteer a minimum of 16 hours a month in between their full-time day jobs.

    special constables

    Hear my second report on BBC Newcastle now.

    Gales 'coincide with rush hour' 08:22:

    The Met Office says the gales will "coincide with the morning rush hour in places".

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    Leave extra time 08:14:

    Northumbria Police tweets: A wet & windy morning on the roads this morning. Leave extra time to get to work, use your lights and #DriveSafe. #RoadSenseCommonSense

    Hannah set to brave the weather 08:05: BBC Tees

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    Hannah McMahon

    She'll have updates on BBC Tees Breakfast with Ali Brownlee.

    News on the hour 07:57:

    The top local headlines at 08:00 include:

    • BBC Newcastle: North East council leaders will decide today whether to take control of local buses back from private companies.
    • BBC Tees: Two Falklands War veterans from the North East have opened the way for thousands of service men to be honoured for their bravery.
    North Seaton Road closed 07:48:

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    There's very slow traffic on the A1 Western Bypass southbound between Hexham turn off in Blaydon and Lobley Hill Interchange in Gateshead. More on BBC Travel News for Teesside and Tyne and Wear.

    Windy with showers 07:40: Lisa Gallagher Weather Presenter, BBC Look North

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    Weather forecast

    Maximum temperature: 12C (54F). Check today's forecast near you or watch my earlier forecast for BBC Look North.

    'Gusts of up to 65mph' 07:32: Lloyd Watson BBC News

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    The hurricane caused power cuts to more than 30,000 homes when it passed through Bermuda last week.

    Damage from  Hurricane Gonzalo The hurricane caused power cuts to more than 30,000 homes when it passed through Bermuda last week
    Weather causes flight cancellations 07:24:

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    Arrivals and departures

    Passengers travelling to Heathrow for onward flights may face delays as services there have been hit. Check with your operator for details.

    Metro services running well 07:15: Lloyd Watson BBC News
    Railways looking clear so far 07:11:

    Travel by rail is also looking all right in our area. There's a good service across Tyne and Wear and Teesside.

    Travel graphic
    No accidents reported 07:06:

    The roads in the North East seem pretty clear so far, with no accidents reported in Tyne and Wear or Teesside. But it is quite windy in places, so be careful how you go.

    Top headlines
    Yellow alert for wind 07:03:

    We've started Local Live an hour early this morning to bring you all the traffic and travel news after the Met Office issued a yellow alert for strong winds and wet weather across the north-east of England.

    Map showing yellow warning

    The warning started at 00:10 and is valid until 18:00.

    Good morning 07:00: Lloyd Watson BBC News

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    It's going to be a breezy day and already flights have been cancelled from Heathrow over the tail end of Hurricane Gonzalo. Have you been affected by the weather overnight? Let us know by email, tweet us @BBCNewsNE or join our Facebook page.



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