I am struggling with the wording though. Surely the BBC headline could just as easily be "Wales plans to introduce high quality vocational training at 14" rather than "Wales plans to revive Grammar schools"
I am old enough that my parents (non-Grammar school) left school at 14 and started work as factory fodder. I hope the Welsh plan does not lead to 14 year olds leaving all academic education at this young age.
But. If introduced sensitively, with agreement between school, home and student, then having a separate vocational stream that focuses on practical skills and the opportunity for a properly worthwhile vocational qualification, could be a good thing.
Most the schools in my town already have pathways to cater for the needs of different children. It is not a return to the grammar system because decisions about which pathway a child is in not decided on the basis of one exam at the age of eleven.
In most schools the decision which pathway is selected is made in conjunction with teachers, parents and the THE CHILD. Many fourteen year olds love the idea of being a car mechanic and WANT to do college based courses. The behavour of children is far better when they have some say in what they study.
We need to wake up to the fact that not everyone is born equal. If a child cannot read or do basic maths then there is little point in trying to teach them a foreign language or high level physics.