Layla Moran, the Liberal Democrat Spokesperson for Education, has suggested that her party should revise its policy on the 11-plus, describing grammar schools as a form of “state-sponsored segregation” that stifle social mobility for poorer children. In her speech at the Lib Dem conference, she said, “What I want to do – what I would like to see us do as a party – is take on the harmful, antiquated tradition of the 11-plus exams and indeed all barriers to entry in the state system.”
It’s great to say her take a principled stance on this, and we’d love to see the Labour party take a lead and change their policy to support fully comprehensive education too.
Our first fringe event at the Lib Dem conference was a success, with Fiona Millar, Professor Rebecca Allen, Tony Hill and Dr Marlene Ellis (Chair) involved in a lively debate about school admissions and selection. You can read more about the event here.
Our next stop is a fringe event at the Labour Party conference on Monday, before we head to the Conservative Party conference to ask why the Tory obsession with grammar schools continues despite all evidence that its poor policy.
Labour Party Conference: Phasing out selection – what’s Labour problem?
Monday 24th September 2018 at 6.30pm at The Function Room, The Baltic Fleet, 33a Wapping, Liverpool L1 8DQ.
Prof Stephen Gorard and Dr Nadia Siddiqui, researchers from the Durham University Evidence Centre for Education.
Holly Rigby, teacher in a London academy school, post graduate student at Kings College London and Momentum activist.
Melissa Benn, Chair of Comprehensive Future and author of ‘Life Lessons : The Case for a National Education Service.’
Chair: Dr.Nuala Burgess
Conservative Party Conference: Selection: A Conservative obsession that has to end
Monday 1st October, 6.30pm at The First Floor Function Room, Old Joint Stock Theatre, 4 Temple Row West, Birmingham, B2 5NY
Geoff Barton, General Secretary, the Association of School & College Leaders (ASCL)
Duncan Ali, ‘Save our Schools’ education campaigner.
Chris Philp MP, Conservative Member of Parliament for Croydon South.
Chair: Fiona Millar
Please come to these events if you can, and tell your friends! You can find shareable flyers to download here.
We’ve published two new policy proposals ahead of our fringe meetings. We’re aiming to provoke debate about the realities of school admissions and selection in our school system. You can read both our new publications online here:
Rob Newman’s funny, truthful, take-down of selection
The first episode of Rob Newman’s new BBC Radio 4 show ‘Total Eclipse of Descartes’ looks at the 11-plus test and its creator, Sir Cyril Burt, who faked his research to support the test.
It’s well worth listening to, and the broadcast is available online for the next month, you can listen here.
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