Post letters: Exam success, benefit discrimination, war graves and Wear it Pink

PUBLISHED: 12:30 08 September 2019

Celebrations at Eastbury Community School - pupils Taranjot Singh and Farjana Enayathulla look at their exam results with headteacher David Dickson. Picture: LUKE ACTON

Celebrations at Eastbury Community School - pupils Taranjot Singh and Farjana Enayathulla look at their exam results with headteacher David Dickson. Picture: LUKE ACTON


Letters, contributions and comments sent in from Post readers this week.

Exam success a boost for schools

Dr Leonard Restall B Ed, M Ed (Hons), New Zealand, formerly from Barking, writes:

The recent educational reports published in the last week's Barking and Dagenham Post on the recent GCSE exam results show some remarkable gains being made by some schools in spite of the examinations being more challenging with changes made to the grading system.

Outstanding results had been recorded and commented on by Eastbury School, Dagenham Park School, and Barking Abbey, to name just a sample of schools, with pleasing results from the present GCSE exams.

These results are an indication that the local educational system is in good shape and enabling students to gain good exam results from their learning.

The headteacher for Eastbury School was extremely pleased with the success of his pupils, many of whom will be continuing to the sixth form.

Barking Abbey had recorded an increase in the number of pupils who had passed GCSE and Dagenham Park had noticed a big improvement in attainment and attributed this to the hard work done by the pupils and teachers.

Exam results are not the "ultimate" of education but are a good yardstick to find out something that is going on within our schools. When exam results are good it is a good indicator that other aspects of education such as personal development and social attitudes may also be good.

Therefore, the local schools, as indicated by this small selection, are doing well in national examinations as well as gaining later acceptance to prestigious universities such as the Oxford and Cambridge Universities.

Benefit 'discrimination' for over-65s

Sandra, Dagenham, writes:

Please could I follow on from the letter I saw in the Post written by Judith Freedman.

It's ironic as only hours before I contacted local MP Jon Cruddas with basically the same view as Judith.

My mother had a severe stroke back in April 2019 which has left her with life changing disabilities which includes dense weakness down the right hand side, speech impairment and double incontinence. She is unable to weight bear so therefore spends her time bed-bound or wheelchair-bound as she is unable to stand or manoeuvre herself.

I have contacted the PIP helpline to enquire about claiming this benefit as I was informed this benefit can include subsidised mobility car that I could use in order for me to take her out to places as simple as the supermarket as my car is not disabled friendly. The PIP advisor informed me that because she is over the age 65 and in receipt of state pension she does not qualify for this benefit. I was horrified. It seems the only benefit she would be entitled to is attendence allowance but this does not give the option of a subsidised mobilty car.

After scouring through various websites it appears that attendence allowance is one of the only benefits that does not give this option... I ask why?

I fail to see for example, two people both with same disabilities, one say for instance could be under 65 and the other 66 and in receipt of state pension, that I may add has paid national insurance and taxes all their working lives, yet the latter does not qualify because of their age. This is age discrimination along with the main factor that ones quality of life is severely impeded due to the unfair criteria one should not meet.

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How can these rules and criteria be justified??

I totally agree, cases should be assessed as individual cases and I will take this further if need be.

Help with war graves request

Brian Hough, 116 Fields Farm Road, Hyde SK14 3NP, writes:

I am acting on behalf of the authorities at the United Nations Memorial Cemetery Busan South Korea, where more than 800 British Servicemen are buried.

The authorities there wish to obtain photographs of those servicemen interred there, and, also of those who died but have no known grave (200+), Copies of the photographs will be placed in the main records and will also be displayed on the walls of the Cemetery Hall of Remembrance for all time.

The following names are just some of the young men from the Greater London area who gave their lives in Korea.

Gnr John A Cloake, Kgn John B Robertshaw, Fus Patrick Shailer, Tpr Charles A Sadler, Fus Francis G Spears; Gnr Joseph T Nutman, Fus Stanley J Anstead, Gnr Dennis G Hill, Sgt Reginald L R Lamb (RAF), Mne Kenneth Wyeth (RM), Pte Dennis Jacobs, Cpl.Edward Darby, 2nd Lt Peter J Affentranger, Mne Arthur J Aldrich (RM), Sgt Albert E A Lalley and Gnr John W Camp.

Any family or friend who lost a loved one in the Korean War (1950-53) and who wishes to take part, can send the photograph to me at the above address. If more details are required you can phone 0161 368 5622, or 07467 037742. you can also email

May I thank you for any help that you can give.

Wear it Pink for cancer awareness

Summer Kendrick, manager, wear it pink, Breast Cancer Now, writes:

I am often asked for ideas on ways in which people can offer support to those affected by breast cancer, especially during October, which marks Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

And my answer is always…take part in wear it pink and raise money for breast cancer research and support.

Wear it pink is the UK's biggest and boldest pink fundraiser, taking place on Friday, October 18 and raises funds for Breast Cancer Now. Not only is taking part fun and easy, in doing so you'll be raising money which will make a real difference to the lives of those affected by this devastating disease.

Despite more people surviving the disease than ever before, breast cancer is still the most common cancer in the UK. In 2017, in London around 5727 women were given the devastating news that they have breast cancer. In the same year around 1,030 women from the area sadly died from breast cancer.

That's why fundraising campaigns such as wear it pink are so important. Since launching in 2002, wear it pink has raised more than £33 million for breast cancer research. Money which helps Breast Cancer Now get one step closer to achieving our ambition that by 2050, everyone who develops breast cancer will live - and be supported to live well.

Register to claim your free fundraising pack at Mark Friday, October 18 in your diaries, and join us in helping to fund life-saving breast cancer research.

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