Educating Yorkshire Episode One: Your reviews and reaction

Thornhill Community Academy's Bailey was a firm favourite
Thornhill Community Academy's Bailey was a firm favourite

Our readers have been emailing, tweeting and posting on Facebook their thoughts about Educating Yorkshire.

The first episode of the fly-on-the-wall documentary, filmed at Thornhill Community Academy, was broadcast on Channel 4 last night (Thursday).

Among the stars of the show causing a Twitter frenzy were pupils Bailey and Ryan, and headteacher Mr Mitchell.

Former Thornhill Academy prefect Shannon Woodhouse, 16, was at the school while filming was taking place.

She wrote to the Reporter: “The program focuses on the academic lives of students aged 11 to 16 years old and looks at the up and downs of life for teenagers today. Not only does it show us what it is like to learn at a modern secondary school, but also the challenges that teachers have to face on a daily basis.

“The headmaster Mr Mitchell shows to be a determined new headmaster with a passion to help all students of the academy succeed at the school.

“The program however, mainly focuses on those unruly children that constantly want to challenge the rules and it only seems to highlight those who have no aspirations to succeed in their academic life.

“This could have a knock-on effect on those students who try hard and aim to reach their goals. With older members of the public already wary of modern day teens, highlighting the bad behaviour shown by children in schools may have a negative effect on the outlook on teenagers. Therefore, the only benefits to staring on a major TV show would be towards the teaching staff at the Academy.

“Thornhill Community Academy which was a former falling school is now rated “good” by Ofsted and was only meant to get a 43 per cent A-C grades at GCSE last year but it actually managed to get 63 per cent.

“‘I was proud of what we had achieve and felt we had a story to tell,’ Mr Mitchell had said.

“The first episode of Education Yorkshire that aired last night, focuses on Bailey; a fifteen year old girl from the local community. She shows herself to be a leader and a staff favourite However, she rebels against the rules and is no stranger to the isolation room.

“Kamreem is also a highlight of the episode and like Bailey, he sees himself in and out of trouble- and in and out of Mr Mitchell’s office. He is a 13 year old boy and a headache for the headmaster and has a mouth prone to getting him into trouble.”

On the Mirfield Live Facebook page, Annette Medlock wrote: “I thought it was very interesting! It goes to show what teachers have to put up with during term time.”

Jo Clark said: “Best documentary I’ve seen for ages. My teenagers (at a secondary school in Hampshire) were also glued to it open mouthed!”

And Carolyne Smith said: “Having moved to Essex, this was a lovely return to my roots. And is the head looking for a girlfriend...”

Over on the Dewsbury Reporter Facebook page, Neil Cascarino said: “That made me laugh - we have teachers and head master showing how kids should dress be smart, both teachers and the head master need to be shown what a razor looks like before passing judgement.”

Annamaria Brown wrote: “I really enjoyed it.”

And Judith Mayman said: “It was great especially Bailey and young Ryan - they are lucky to have a head teacher like Mr Mitchell.”

Twitter user KtJ said: “Mr Mitchell and bailey are stars. Twitter loves them.”

Claire Young said: “Lots of people feared, moaned that #educatingyorkshire would shame the county but I feel it’s the opposite. A head who is a hero!”

Dewsbury and Mirfield MP Simon Reevell said: “10/10 so far for Mr Mitchell and his team!!”

Adam Jones said: “Everybody at @thornhillca should be incredibly proud to have a head teacher like that!”

One Direction pop star Louis Tomlinson, from Doncaster, wrote: “Little Ryan on Educating Yorkshire is a legend He should be on children’s TV”

Stephen Drew, who was deputy head in the Educating Essex series, said: “Love it already. You see Britain: this is what we do all over the country for your children every day.”

Episode two of Educating Yorkshire airs on Channel 4 at 9pm on Thursday.

We’ll be tweeting from @DewsReporter, so join the discussion by including our handle or using our hashtag #BetterThanEssex