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The school that won't let girls run... Because the principal fears they will lose their virginity.

We’ve rounded up all the latest stories from Australia and around the world – so you don’t have to go searching.

1. Islamic School in Victoria bans girls from running.

Girls at the Islamic Schools of Victoria, Al-Taqwa College, outside Melbourne have been banned from running at sporting events because the principal believes it may cause them to lose their virginity.

Girls were banned from running at sporting events.

The Age reports that a former teacher has written to the education ministers claiming female students were being discriminated against.

“The principal holds beliefs that if females run excessively, they may ‘lose their virginity’,” the letter says.

“The principal believes that there is scientific evidence to indicate that if girls injure themselves, such as break their leg while playing soccer, it could render them infertile.”

Another letter written by students to the Principal says “It was really shocking to find out it has been cancelled because of the excuse girls can’t run,” the students said.

“Just because we are girls doesn’t mean we can’t participate in running events. It also doesn’t say girls can’t run in the hadith (the sayings of Muhammad).”

 The Age reports that the Principal Omar Hallak prevented the female primary school cross-country team from participating in a 2013 and 2014 district event.

Another former Al-Taqwa College teacher told The Age “I was told the girls weren’t allowed to participate. The reason was they might over-exert themselves and lose their virginity or be rendered infertile.”

The Victorian Registration and Qualifications Authority which regulate schools is investigating the allegations.

2. Person of interest in William Tyrell case to appear in court on unrelated charges.

63-year old washing machine repairman, Bill Spedding will appear in court today after he was charged last night with a series of alleged historical child sex offences.

Bill Spedding will appear in court today.

Spedding had previously been investigated over a link to the disappearance of missing 3-year old William Tyrell.

He was charged with five counts of sexual intercourse with a person under the age of 10 years, and two counts of common assault.

The State Crime Command investigators allege the offences were committed against two girls, aged three and six, in 1987 in Sydney’s Campbelltown area.

He was refused bail.

Strike Force Rosann Commander, Detective Inspector Gary Jubelin, stressed the charges do not relate to the ongoing William Tyrrell investigation.

Anyone with information about that matter is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

3.  Super storm death toll rises to eight.

The death toll from the storm which pummelled Sydney, the Hunter and the Central Coast since Monday has now risen to eight after a man died when his ute and a garbage truck collided in the Sydney suburb of Galston, and an 87-year-old pedestrian died after being hit by a car in East Gosford.

Two people were also killed on the New England Highway near Singleton yesterday.

An 86-year-old woman died when she became trapped in her car in floodwaters near Maitland yesterday. Police recovered her body and her car late yesterday.

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And on Tuesday three elderly people died in Dungog.

The rest of the storm wrap up:

  • Sydney has seen monster waves of almost 15 metres high offshore, the biggest since at least 1987.
  • A dozen council areas between Sydney’s Northern Beaches and the Hunter Valley have been declared disaster areas.
  • The Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) has declared the New South Wales storms a catastrophe.
  • More than 190,000 properties were still without power late on Wednesday night.
  • The SES conducted more than 100 flood rescues and dealt with more than 12,000 calls for assistance.
  • The severe weather warning has now been cancelled.

 4. NSW Police searching for a man after a woman’s body found.

NSW Police are searching for a man on the Far South Coast after the discovery of the body of a woman in a car.

A man is on the run.

Police say they stopped a car on the Bermagui to Tathra Road at Cuttagee Point, Bermagui, in the Bega Valley last night. A man fled into bushland.

Police conducted a search of the car where they located the body of a woman, believed to be aged in her 30s.

A crime scene has been established at the car

Initial investigations suggest the man and woman were known to each other.

Police are hoping to speak with a man who may be able to assist with inquiries. He is described as being of Pacific Islander/Maori appearance, in his late 20s, with an athletic build. He was last seen wearing dark clothing.

It is believed that there may be a link to a missing duo from Canberra. On Monday the family of 35-year old Daniella D’Addario and Josaia (Joey) Vosikata, 27, reported them missing to police. At the time police would not comment on the relationship between the two.

Police advise members of the public who see the man or know his whereabouts not to approach him, but to contact ‘Triple 0’ immediately.

5. Parents plead for others to vaccinate.

Felicity Harley and her husband, AFL premiership captain Tom Harley are pleading with parents to vaccinate their children after their son, Hugo came down with the deadly meningococcal B disease.

Their five-week old son Hugo was one week away from being old enough to receive his vaccinations when he was rushed to hospital on Easter Sunday with a high temperature.

For more read this post here.

6. Student arrested over French terror plot.

A student has been arrested in Paris on suspicion of planning an imminent attack on churches in France.  He was arrested after he called emergency services to treat a gunshot wound.

The 24-year-old, believed to be an Algerian national, is thought to have accidentally shot himself.

 7.  Prince Phillip receives his Knighthood.

The Prime Minister will be celebrating today as his favourite royal officially has become a Knight of the Order of Australia.

Prince Philip has received his official insignia in a low-key awards ceremony in the White Drawing Room of Windsor Castle, from his wife, the Queen.


8. Three-year old pushed mother down a lift shaft.

There are reports that a Chinese mother who died after falling down a lift shaft while searching for her keys was pushed by her three-year-old son.

The boy is reported to be just three-years old.

The 45-year old woman was said to have been looking for a misplaced set of keys that she suspected had fallen down the shaft.

The Qianjiang Evening Post says that the woman named as Mrs Xie, was being assisted by the building manager Yang Shao.

Mrs Shao says she turned away for a moment but when she looked back Mrs Xie was gone and only her three-year old son was standing there.

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“Where is your mother?” the Ms Yang asked the little boy.

“I pushed her down,” he reportedly replied.

“The thing that makes me the saddest is that my wife has gone and my son will have to carry the blame for his whole life,” her husband told local television.

 9. South Africa deploys troops over xenophobic attacks.

South Africa has been forced to deploy troops to help quell anti-immigrant violence after mobs attacked immigrants from other African nations and looted their shops.

South Africa on alert (Getty Images)

Over the past three weeks seven people have been killed including a Mozambican man who was pictured on the front page of a Sunday newspaper being beaten and stabbed to death in broad daylight.

The attacks are said to be stemming from the belief that that immigrants are taking South Africans’ jobs.

Four men, aged between 18 and 22 years old, were charged on Tuesday with the murder and robbery of the Mozambican man, Emmanuel Sithole, a street vendor in the low-income area.

Reuters reports that in 2008, South African troops helped to end similar bouts of violence after more than 60 foreigners were killed in unrest as locals claimed they were losing their jobs to immigrants.

 10. House of Horrors survivors speak for the first time.

Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus who were held for more than a decade by Ariel Castro in a case dubbed Cleveland’s ‘House of Horrors’ have spoken for the first time, two years after they escaped from their captor.

The two have written a book, Hope: A Memoir of Survival in Cleveland, which will be released on April 27.

Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus

In an excerpt, published in People the women have written about how they survived imprisonment.

They have also given an interview to ABC America.

Berry has told for the first time of how she felt confused feelings towards her captor, Ariel Castro after she became pregnant to him from his repeated sexual assaults.

“When the baby started kicking, I reached for his hand and placed it on my stomach. ” she wrote.

“I knew the baby would be safer if he was excited about being a new father.”

Berry tells of how Castro would take her baby, who he called Pretty to Church while leaving her chained up in the house.  She describes feeling warmth towards Castro when he treated their daughter well.

“I know it’s wrong but I feel closer to him. I appreciate that he treats Jocelyn so well and buys her clothes and toys.

“I desperately want Jocelyn to have a normal life. On the days that he helps me do that, I actually feel some affection for him. I’m so confused.

“How can he be good one minute and so cruel the next?”

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