Police in Birmingham have urged parents not to send their children to school with the latest 'gizmos'.

Officers are concerned that pupils with iPods, hand-held gaming consoles and the latest mobile phones could be potential victims of robberies.

Police are calling on parents to give their children unattractive mobile phones to help make them less of a target of thieves.

Sergeant Mike O'Hara, from the robbery team at Steelhouse Lane police station, said: "A lot of parents think they are protecting their child by giving them a mobile phone to take to school.

"They may not realise that by doing this they could be making their child a robbery target.

"Parents should think twice about what items they are sending their children to school with and whether they might be safer if they left them at home."

Parents are also being warned not to report false robberies to the police if they are told by their children that they have had their gadget stolen when, it reality, they have lost it.

Officers have also given out crime prevention information to children which urges them to keep bags closed and close to their person at all times, avoid carrying wallet or purses in back trouser pockets, and to be discreet when using mobile phones.