Blog censorship

You may have read about Scottish schoolgirl Martha Payne’s NeverSeconds, a blog focussing on Martha’s school dinners. She uploads a photo of her lunch every day and rates it. Martha also posts photos of lunches she has been sent from other schoolchildren around the world, as well as raising money for charity Mary’s Meals, which provides school lunches for the poorest communities all over the world.

Argyll and Bute Council claimed that the nine year old’s blog was attracting negative attention, and implemented a ban on photography in the school canteen, after one of her photos was published in a Scottish newspaper with a less than flattering headline. They issued a statement saying that the blog was a “misrepresentation” of the food choices offered to pupils at the school.

The ban has now been lifted after public uproar, and Martha will be resuming blogging about her school dinners today. The publicity the row has attracted means that Mary’s Meals has now raised enough money to feed 1963 pupils in Malawi school meals for an entire year.

Good on you Martha! This should never have happened in the first place. Students should be encouraged to do this sort of thing; as Martha has proved, she is not only is she communicating with kids all over the world, but also writing on a regular basis. Too many pupils in the UK leave school without a basic knowledge of English spelling and grammar.