Grammar Schools (given green light by Theresa May part 3)

(693 Posts)
sandyholme Wed 17-Aug-16 12:20:01

Part 3 ... Let the sparring continue..

sandyholme Wed 17-Aug-16 12:27:29

Bertrand. It is telling that my 'high' school educated friends are the most ferocious advocates in bestowing the benefits of selective education.

Peregrina Wed 17-Aug-16 13:01:56

Well, my 'high school' educated friends are most definitely not advocates of the selective system. (In our case the Grammars were called the High Schools, and the Secondary Moderns were just called Secondary Schools.)

Most of my grammar school friends feel that their schools had inflated opinions of themselves, I would say particularly the girls grammar schools.

BertrandRussell Wed 17-Aug-16 13:08:39

"Bertrand. It is telling that my 'high' school educated friends are the most ferocious advocates in bestowing the benefits of selective education."

It's not telling at all. We all tend to mix with people who broadly share our views. If I judged public opinion by my friends, we'd have a Labour government, we'd still be in Europe, and there'd be capital punishment for anyone who gets an apostrophe wrong, "fist pumps" or says "going forward"

MapleandPear Wed 17-Aug-16 13:28:34

Yes of course disadvantaged kids need more help. But let's also think of the majority and not allow the upper classes to perpetuate their elite little bubble of extreme privilege and entitlement.

MapleandPear Wed 17-Aug-16 13:36:56

Sorry, MN ate the first part of my post there. I was saying that most people in positions of privilege and influence and nearly all those in media come from expensive private schools and are from the upper middle or upper classes. A few break through from the middle classes who can't afford private school when the kids get to go to elite "comps" or faith schools (if they can afford the house prices in the catchment area and get them baptised in time and put in the hours at church etc) or grammar schools. If you take away one of these routes, you are removing one form of social mobility and allowing the super rich to perpetuate their bubble of privilege.

MapleandPear Wed 17-Aug-16 13:45:57

Choice is rather an illusion in the schools system. Some parents do the cha-cha of private school fees, some do the paso doble with house prices around a top school, some do the tango of becoming suddenly religious, in Kent we do the tutor-and-get-into-top-grammar conga. Most people who have a bright kid, particularly who went through the experience of a comprehensive school in the 1980s, being only expected to be average and being bullied for being enthusiastic about lessons, want their kids to go to a school where all, or the very vast majority of the other kids, want to learn. They aren't prepared to send their kids to Joe Bloggs Academy so that Hayden* Bloggs can copy their work in return for not giving them a kicking on the way home.

*No ressemblence to persons living or dead intended etc

Clavinova Wed 17-Aug-16 15:02:45

Iljkk
just how much do the high ability kids "underachieve" in the non- grammar system?
I have already linked to this 2013 Ofsted report - The most able students:
www.gov.uk/government/publications/are-the-most-able-students-doing-as-well-as-they-should-in-our-secondary-schools

^Almost two thirds (65%) of high-attaining pupils leaving primary school, securing Level 5 in both English and mathematics, did not reach an A* or A grade in both these GCSE subjects in 2012 in non-selective secondary schools. This represented over 65,000 students.
Just over a quarter (27%) of these previously high-attaining students attending non-selective secondary schools did not reach a B grade in both English and mathematics at GCSE in 2012. This represented just over 27,000 young people.^

cressetmama Wed 17-Aug-16 15:13:04

I know Bertrand wants us to stay on track, but thought this was quite an interesting alternative programme, that I had not heard about when I lived in the US. from the Times

MapleandPear Wed 17-Aug-16 15:19:21

That report reminds me that I got 97% in a maths test at the end of Y9. Y9 teacher was bloody brilliant. Then I was put in the top set, teacher was awful. I scraped a C at GCSE. Not that I wanted to carry on with maths, but still. If I'd have done less well in the Y9 test I could have stayed in the second to top group with the same teacher and would probably have got an A.

2StripedSocks Wed 17-Aug-16 16:02:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

BertrandRussell Wed 17-Aug-16 16:18:03

"Bertrand your twisting of posts is ridiculous. Stating that all parents make choices,that preparing for the 11+ doesn't need to cost a lot and actually costs less per month than many people spend on phones is a world away from your statement re baths and the poor."

You are making the assumption that everyone has the equal ability to make choices. You are making the assumption that everybody has the time, the energy and the knowledge to make the choices that you and I did- despite my anecdote about my dd's friend's mother. You also appear to be saying that if parents don't have the inclination to make the choices you and I did then tough luck on their children.

haybott Wed 17-Aug-16 16:19:37

I was saying that most people in positions of privilege and influence and nearly all those in media come from expensive private schools and are from the upper middle or upper classes.

"Most" are privately educated? Where is your evidence for "most" and what is your definition of "privilege and influence"? And what age group are you looking at? Given my own experiences, the demographics of my own work place, and the fact that over half of Oxbridge graduates are from state schools, I find the "most" hard to believe.

MapleandPear Wed 17-Aug-16 16:29:19

Most of the judiciary, top politicians, high up in civil service, journalists, broadcasters and actors. If they have gone to a state school it will be an exclusive faith school, or one that is exclusive due to the cost of living in the catchment area, or one that is exclusive on the basis of passing a test to get in, and most often getting a certain score and not just passing it.

haybott Wed 17-Aug-16 16:42:35

Most of the judiciary, top politicians, high up in civil service, journalists, broadcasters and actors.

Again: data?

And you also chose not to include senior management of private companies (arguably more influential than civil service), bankers, senior academics and leaders of universities, doctors, headteachers, .... all of whom have a fair amount of influence over society.

allowing the super rich to perpetuate their bubble of privilege.

Are you arguing that all those in your own list above are "super rich"? I thought that journalists on national papers had to be quite senior to make 60k or so per year so hardly "super rich".

2StripedSocks Wed 17-Aug-16 16:43:49

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

BertrandRussell Wed 17-Aug-16 17:03:01

Yeah- so other children have to suck up the fact that they were born to feckless parents, or to parents who don't speak English, or parents who have to work all the hours God sends to make ends meet. Suck up the fact that they have to care for siblings, or work in the family business or are girls whose parents don't believe in educating girls. Or whose parents were completely turned off education themselves, or who are scared of authority. Or who drink too much or take drugs or just can't deal with the normal complexities of life. Because yours have to suck up the fact that you chose to read them bed time stories and gave them a nice desk to do their homework at and said no to too much TV and cooked them healthy meals. Right.

Lurkedforever1 Wed 17-Aug-16 17:20:06

bert why does your sense of injustice for those children appear to go to the wind when they have natural ability alongside any or all of those deprivations?

2StripedSocks Wed 17-Aug-16 17:39:41

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Clavinova Wed 17-Aug-16 17:42:10

I don't understand that Sutton Trust link
Giving disadvantaged students the opportunity to prepare for the tests so they can compete on a more level playing field with students who may have received intensive tutoring.
Working to make the tests as fair as possible and taking steps to "tutor-proof" them.
So which is it..? I am left with conclusion that ST talks Bollux.

Seems quite logical to me - the Sutton Trust is a think-tank/educational charity - giving disadvantaged students the opportunity to prepare for the tests would be an achievable short-term goal and 'working' to make the tests as fair as possible and 'taking steps' to tutor-proof them would be a long-term aim.

MapleandPear Wed 17-Aug-16 17:43:53

I thought that journalists on national papers had to be quite senior to make 60k or so per year so hardly "super rich"

They don't have to make that much if they come from money. Actors often don't earn a lot either. It's not always about jobs that earn the most money (though that often comes with it), it's about jobs that have lots of influence or are difficult to get into, unless you have the right background to do so. Barristers are a good example. They often earn a pittance to start with. You have to have access to money to get over those first few years.

Sure, middle class kids can do pretty well going to the average comp and an ex-poly university, say. They might get a decent office-based humdrum white collar job earning above the national average as long as they put in 50+ hours a week plus the long commute, with a growing sense of exhaustion and dissatisfaction with life in general. I say let more of them fulfil their potential and have access to the kinds of jobs upper class adults get.

noblegiraffe Wed 17-Aug-16 17:53:27

We need grammar schools so that the middle classes can become journalists and actors? confused

haybott Wed 17-Aug-16 17:54:30

Do you have any evidence that the vast majority of journalists actually "come from money"? I deal with quite a few journalists and from chatting with them I would say that this is not the case (and many were not privately educated). Ime the Polly Toynbee types are the exceptions, rather than the rule.

There are plenty of middle class kids at top universities, BTW. Quite a few Russell Group universities are at 80+% students state educated; they can't all be labelled "super-rich" when we're talking about hundreds of thousands of students. (Though I must admit I'm not really sure what you mean by upper class anyhow... you seem to think upper class is a much bigger category than I would.)

I say let more of them fulfil their potential and have access to the kinds of jobs upper class adults get.

How?

haybott Wed 17-Aug-16 17:56:08

I also think we're actually already over-producing English graduates and would be journalists. We're massively underproducing STEM graduates but none of these made the "elite professions" list above! (Despite the fact that prospects for STEM graduates are typically very good.)

MapleandPear Wed 17-Aug-16 17:56:18

We need them to have access to the top schools in the country with their upper and upper middle class peers so that they can have the confidence to fulfil their potential and get top jobs in whatever field they choose. Otherwise you are just perpetuating a tiny elite who can access these jobs.

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