I went to one - my choice in part, parents would have preferred me to go to the Catholic secondary. As a teacher I have worked in two. I know if I had gone to the Catholic school I would have coasted (even more than I did). Some people seem to he very against the grammar school system and I'm not sure why. It was the making of my dad (miner's son from council estate in Scotland)and I think that all counties should have that provision. Surely it's just split site streaming in a way.
well, if I and many others parents believed that my child has got as good a chance of education in a local comp, I would send my child to my local comp. There would be no problem.
As it stands, it is a nerve-wreking, extremely stressful undertaking to prepare your child for the 11+ and go through the whole grammar process - in some areas it is 13 applicants competing for 1 place! People do not do it just for fun or lack of something else better to do.
Closing good schools is not the answer. Improve the rest and see what happens. But this is an unpopular view.