STUDENTS are being paid to curb bad behaviour among schoolchildren on trains.

Under the scheme - triggered by complaints from schools, parents and train operators - sixth formers are being trained to keep order on trains from Whitby to Middlesbrough, which have been plagued by troublemaking pupils attending Whitby schools.

The students are being paid £5 an hour by North Yorkshire County Council through its passenger transport budget.

The scheme has been set up by Eskdale School, Whitby, North Yorkshire Education Authority and Whitby Community College.

Eskdale School headteacher Dave Bradley said: "With the best will in the world, no one is going to apply for the job as supervisor on the school train, so we thought we could employ sixth-formers and put some money in their pockets."

He said the students would be trained in avoiding confrontation and would act as eyes and ears for school teaching staff. "Their presence will act as a deterrent" he said.

About 200 pupils a day travel on the trains.