Changing my mind on grammar schools

When I was 16, after having completed my GCSE examinations, myself and a few friends travelled to London for a few days of sightseeing. We visited the Palace of Westminster on our last day and out of the corner of my eye, I spotted our local MP. As any group of precocious and politically aware grammar school boys would, some of us decided to go over and greet our Member of Parliament.

6 thoughts on “Changing my mind on grammar schools

  1. Yes. comprehensives can deliver Grammar School type education and rigorous education for all. Unfortunately very few do. It isn’t rocket science. MCS has shown the way and previously some Heads have shown strong no-nonsense leadership in a small number of state schools. The majority however vehemently oppose all of this. The Government has not tackled this directly but piecemeal. In the meantime and until The Blob are truly made to change the vast majority of youngsters will get a failed education that sees them fail to compete with those educated in a confident rigorous environment, and this applies to the majority of kids in OFSTED good/outstanding schools.


    • Nothing to add really, I generally agree. I suppose we differ on the possibilities for change. Whereas the grammar school lobby see the system as the sinking of the Titanic, and the best we can do is get the best kids out on the lifeboats – I genuinely believe that the MCS message is percolating and that we can certainly slow the ship down and eventually stop it (‘when’ is a different question). Might be worth reading the MCS head’s thoughts on this:


  2. Pingback: How to persuade those of us who are not instinctively anti-grammar – To Miss with Love

  3. As an ex Grammar School boy, and a current Independent School teacher, I recognise much of what you very carefully and articulately say. I do think however that there are significant flaws in the Michaela example to the world (in how much it is actually generalisable) – which unfortunately limit your overall message. I’ll put these things in a blog of my own so as not to run the risk of confusion. A well written and thoughtful post nonetheless!


    • Yes, please do. I would be interested to hear what you think is not replicable. I think we would have a tougher time with middle class parents, but once the debate has shifted onto what works and what doesn’t in schools, then I think people will see that a lot of it – on a systematic basis is eminently replicable. This may not be the thrust of what you are saying though -so I look forward to reading your thoughts!

      Liked by 1 person

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