In a very well thought out article, Melissa Benn talks about a key issue I have discussed several times before, that being divisive education institutions that foster selectivity. There are still certain grammar schools in certain counties that still use the 11 plus, such as Lincolnshire. Furthermore, independent schools model their entry requirement exams on the 11 plus. Therefore, the 11 plus still fosters the selective attitudes that the public schooling sector has, which breaded like a rabbit when the tripartite system was introduced. What Benn rightly argues for is for the parties to stop just talking about how selective schooling is, and how it needs to be tackled, and actually do something about it.
She rightly mostly questions the Tories ability to keep to their rhetoric on the problems of selective schools and the virtues of diverse and representative schooling. Michael Gove is a key example of his anti grammar schools rhetoric but pro grammar school practice. The Tories have a long history with grammar schools that will be hard to abandon if they attempt to tackle the divides that grammar schools cause.
I agree with her calls to end grammar schools and switch to a wholly comprehnsive schooling system for the public sector. I also don't agree with the elitism that private schooling fosters, but this post is wholly addressing the public sector. She highlights a campaign called Comprehensive Future, which is trying to abolish the selective aspects to our public schooling by changing grammar schools to comprehensive schools. This would be the only way that we could get politicians properly thinking about comprehensive schools, and ways that the system could be improved so that we help those who are less privileged and are either put off or live to far away to apply for grammar schools.
Stigmatising children at 11 if they fail their 11 plus is disgraceful. There needs to be an end to this selective rubbish that is illogical in a seemingly diverse and representative society. However, the Tories, we know, are too concerned with their Swedish based schooling systems to really give thought to how they would overcome the problems around selection. So there is little chance that the concerns of many about the schooling system will be addressed in the near future.
Sally Bercow at the High Court
20 hours ago