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20th December 2015

Daily Express To Publish Correction

IPSO has ordered the Daily Express to publish a front page correction.

The Daily Express published a front page story on 24th July 2015, which claimed that English was beginning to "die out" in some British classrooms.

This was ruled as inaccurate by the Independent Press Standards Organisation (IPSO).

The story's headline read: "311 languages spoken in our schools", with the sub headline reading: "Special investigation: classrooms where English is starting to die out."

The story went on to state that English speaking pupils are “becoming a minority in hundreds of classrooms”.

IPDO ruled that the story "made clear assertions of fact that English 'is starting to die out' in schools and that English was 'hardly heard at all' in some schools. These claims distorted the data cited by the newspaper, which did not include any information about the frequency with which English was spoken in schools, by either pupils or teachers.

"This was a particularly concerning case because the inaccuracies had been repeated throughout the entire article, including prominently in print in the front-page sub-headline, and because they were central to the report, on a matter of significant public importance.

"The article’s central claim – which was both dramatic and significant – was substantially undermined by the inaccuracies and the newspaper had failed to comply with its obligations under Clause 1 [of the Editors' Code] to correct it. In such circumstances, a reference to the adjudication must be published on the front page, directing readers to the full adjudication, which should be published on page seven.

"The front-page reference should include a headline making clear that IPSO has upheld the complaint, and refer to its subject matter; it must be agreed in advance. It should also be published on the newspaper’s website, with a link to the full adjudication appearing on the homepage for 48 hours; it should then be archived online in the usual way."
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