Recent press shows that Damian Hinds is “enthusiastic” about grammar school expansion. Schools Week highlighted the possibility that money might be made available to selective schools, while the Independent suggested 3 grammar schools might build an ‘annexe’ school. In an article in TES Ed Dorell pointed out that “selective education is in the Conservative DNA.” He predicts that Theresa May will use grammar schools as a cornerstone of her education policy in a future election.
We assembled some quotes from Conservative politicians who think it’s a bad idea to support selection. There is clearly cross-party support for comprehensive education without a divisive 11-plus. You can read the quotes in full here. David Cameron once said, “I think it is delusional to think that a policy of expanding grammar schools is either a good idea, a sellable idea, or even the right idea.” So is Theresa May delusional?!
The Office of the School Adjudicator’s annual report mentioned complaints about grammar school admissions. The Adjudicator considered complaints that Bucks’ 11-plus test is unfair to poor children who achieve high scores in SATs but are less likely to pass the 11-plus than wealthier high attaining children. Despite agreeing that there was evidence of a problem the Adjudicator ruled that the test was “fair.” You can read more about this in our article here.
Rachel Reeves MP spoke to Comprehensive Future
Rachel Reeves wrote ‘Alice in Westminster’ a biography of Alice Bacon, a key figure in the early comprehensive movement. We interviewed Rachel about her book, and her own views on selection. Click here to watch both videos. In the video below Rachel talks about her own education and why she dislikes selection.
Alan Bainbridge wrote a thought-provoking article about his bad decision making in choosing unhealthy food, and the bad decision making of grammar supporters who ignore evidence about selection. He argues that we should move away from evidence based arguments, and instead focus on the values suggested by support for the 11-plus. If values are brought into the debate is it harder for the supporters of the 11-plus to maintain their stance? Read the article by clicking here.
Fiona Millar wrote an excellent article about the success of comprehensive schools in Damian Hinds constituency. Hampshire’s comprehensive education was compared to selective Bucks by Nuala Burgess in a ‘A Tale of Two Counties’. The parents in Bucks spoke about the stress and worry caused by the 11-plus system, while Hampshire parents were happy with their inclusive all-ability schools. You can read the pamphlet in full here.