3 September 2007
The pen is mightier than the sword, it is said, and Southwark’s students are going some way towards proving that with their excellent exam results - first A level results last week and now GCSEs.
Their achievement in GCSEs - improvement rates four times higher than the national average - is set against the stark background of the current discussion about youth gang violence. Quite rightly, there is also some debate about the role the media plays in our perception of young people.
None of us in the press are immune to the temptations of spinning or tweaking a story, so that it sells more copies of the paper, or more viewers. And of course the public, for all the complaints, have their part to play. If there isn’t a demand for sensational stories, then the press will quickly give up supplying them.
In terms of the problems of youth gang violence, we’d argue that the media also plays a vital role in keeping people abreast of some very real dangers they face, but also as a forum for sounding out ideas, and possibly solutions.
What’s also vital is that, when young people do something really positive, as is the case in Southwark this week, they also get the coverage - not just when it’s a horror story.
Agree or disagree? Give us your opinion
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