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What can a teacher expect from their class of young people?
Dr David Regis, SHEU's Research Manager, examined some data from the report "Young People into 2012",
"In a mixed class of 30 Year 6 pupils, made up of the same sorts of youngsters who comprised the sample for our Young People into 2012, a teacher can expect to be looking at 8 pupils who had 5 portions of fruit and veg to eat yesterday but 2 who had none. Probably none will be current smokers, maybe one will have experimented with cigarettes. Three or four will be fairly sure that they know someone personally who uses drugs. 10 will have spent their own money on sweets or chocolate last week. 24 will at least sometimes play physically active games during breaktimes. All but four or five will have brushed their teeth at least twice yesterday."
"Meanwhile, up the road in a secondary school classroom, a colleague, teaching a mixed Year 10 group who also match our sample, can expect to be looking at 5 pupils who had 5 portions of fruit and veg to eat yesterday but four who had none; in the class will be 4 girls (out of 15) who had nothing to eat for breakfast that day. 5 of all 30 pupils will have had an alcoholic drink last week and 4 or 5 might be current smokers; 3 will have smoked cannabis at least once in their lives. 19 will be living with both parents; three will think there are no adults they can trust. Maybe 20 will have had 8 or more hours' sleep last night."
"In the same Year 10 class, there's about an even chance that one will have very low self-esteem while the self-esteem of 12 will be buoyant; two will usually feel very uneasy meeting people their own age for the first time while more than 2/3 of the class will be quite sanguine about it. One will feel not at all happy with their life. 21 will enjoy sport and physical activities at least 'quite a lot', but one or two will enjoy them 'not at all'. Four or five will have a current paid term-time job. Only a third of them will understand what Chlamydia is and whether or not it can be cured, while 18 will know of a local young people's sexual health service. 6 will have been bullied at school in the last year."
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