Magazine article Times Educational Supplement

News at a Glance: News

Magazine article Times Educational Supplement

News at a Glance: News

Article excerpt

ADHD diagnoses fuel psychotropic drug boom

The number of prescriptions for drugs used to treat conditions such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in the UK has increased by 56 per cent since 2007, figures have revealed. In 2012, GPs gave out 657,000 prescriptions for methylphenidate drugs, including Ritalin - up from 420,000 six years ago. Health watchdog the Care Quality Commission blames the rise in the use of psychotropic drugs on increased diagnosis of ADHD in children and adults. The commission raised concerns that the medication is being used by students as a "smart drug" to improve academic performance.

Students shared test photos online to 'gain attention'

Students from around 250 Californian schools posted photos on social media websites while sitting their end of year tests. At 16 of the schools, students were discovered to have posted pictures of actual test questions, prompting concerns around security when exams are taking place. Deborah Sigman, deputy superintendent in the California Department of Education, said the tests would still be deemed valid. "It looks to us as though most of these postings were about gaining some attention and communication with peers, and not an active (attempt) to try to game the system in terms of the assessment," she added.

Picture books best for boosting literacy, study finds

The most effective way to improve the literacy of many children is to ignore words and instead concentrate on picture books, according to research from the University of Glasgow. …

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