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Nick Clegg State Education and Hypocrisy?

(66 Posts)
deadbeatdad Wed 21-Apr-10 21:14:52

Is Nick Clegg a bit of a hypocritic when it comes to state schools

Lib Dem manifesto want to effectively eliminate faith schools - limit staff appointments on faith grounds and make faith schools adopt the same admissions criteria as community schools.

Yet his own children go to Catholic primary schools and he has himself said state secondary schools in London represent a fall off a 'cliff edge' in terms of standards so he hasn't ruled out sending his children private at secondary level.

If he thinks london state secondaries are not good enough for his children why does he want to make faith schools in the capital to same as non-faith alternatives.

I am surprised he hasn't been challenged on this (rather than the snide pieces about his Westminster schooling).


meditrina Fri 25-Jan-13 19:15:53

Tony Blair used the faith school route, didn't he?

Plenty of examples of Labour MPs attacking private schools on a policy level whilst sending their own kids to them.

Nothing changes.

Pyrrah Sat 26-Jan-13 23:03:05

It is Mrs Clegg who decided the kids schools.

Nick is an atheist, Mrs C is a staunch Catholic and is bringing up their children in the faith. I would imagine that an RC school would not be his personal choice.

happilyconfused Sat 26-Jan-13 23:12:32

What do you expect from the man that went back on his promise with regards university fees? One rule for the rich, another for the squeezed middle and poor,

swlmum Sun 27-Jan-13 21:25:53

The school his kids go to is actually the nearest state primary school to his house so if faith schools were abolished they would probably end up there anyway.

JoanByers Mon 28-Jan-13 00:58:45

zombie thread

ravenAK Mon 28-Jan-13 01:04:17

Zombie, which starts with the immortal words 'Is Nick Clegg a bit of a hypocrite...'


If ever a gavel was needed! grin

TheOriginalSteamingNit Mon 28-Jan-13 08:49:51

Just when I was starting to feel a bit sorry for the guy, he announces he will probably have to send his children privately - having not even visited his local comprehensive school.


dapplegrey Mon 28-Jan-13 14:26:33

Politicians educate their children privately because they know they can get away with it. They will not lose their seat nor be blocked from promotion as a result. There will be a bit of a fuss in the media at the time and Andrew Neil will make some sarcastic remarks but that's about it.

TalkinPeace2 Mon 28-Jan-13 16:04:09

As Clegg's wife earns a darn sight more than him, the choice should be up to her as he'll not be a politician for ever

DadOnIce Mon 28-Jan-13 16:09:26

It's a difficult one. I suppose the answer should be that using the state system doesn't involve "sacrificing" anything at all.

The moment you say it does, you admit there is a two-tier system, and the moment you admit that you have conceded that there is a problem. And if you are in the current Government, admitting that the state schools are not good enough is a bit of a foot-in-mouth moment.

LineRunner Mon 28-Jan-13 16:20:08

I'm not sure that I'm comfortable dissecting the private lives of children.

The issue is surely national policy on faith schools, admissions, academies and pupil place planning.

BeerTricksPotter Mon 28-Jan-13 16:26:25

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

DadOnIce Mon 28-Jan-13 17:39:41

It is a tacit admission that the state system is a "compromise", that's what I was trying to say. And as soon as you say that you admit that it's not good enough for all children, not just your own.

TheOriginalSteamingNit Mon 28-Jan-13 17:42:55

I don't think this is 'discussing the private lives of children', though, it is discussing the words, actions and indeed inactions of the deputy prime minister.

MrsSalvoMontalbano Mon 28-Jan-13 18:21:15

It is weasel words to describe this as the private lives of children. The fact is the the Deputy PM, and leader of a party that used to be serious about state education does not consider it good enough for his own children.He says local schools are competitve difficult to get into - err... Wandsworth comps are not difficult to get into [puzzled] and it appears he hasn't bothered to visit them.

LineRunner Mon 28-Jan-13 19:56:44

I don't like the way that in the UK it's considered OK to know many things about children just because of who their parents are.

There are plenty of other ways to question and challenge policy makers on policies. After all, the OP is concerned about proposed changes to the admission criteria for faith schools. That's a really interesting debate worth having on its own merits.

I wouldn't like where my children go to school put into the media. I'd expect to have to justify my policy proposals though on the basis of evidence.

I have changed my view on this lately, by the way. I used to think politicians 'fair game' but I think the various media and hacking inquiries made me feel a bit uncomfortable about the voracious appetite of the public information about public and private figures, including politicians' children.

But I do get what everyone is saying who disagrees with me, as I used to think it (e.g. about Diane Abbot).

LineRunner Mon 28-Jan-13 19:58:01

sorry appetite of the public for information

MrsSalvoMontalbano Mon 28-Jan-13 20:12:51

The thing is that they are very self-righteous when they are are not in that position - ie before their DC are of school agge - ie being very vicious about people who decide on independent education if they showed more understanding at that point, it would not be hypocritical.

MrsSalvoMontalbano Mon 28-Jan-13 20:15:11

sorry muddled typing - what I mean is that they themselves castigate people for choosing independent education, then... choose it themselves. No-one would object if they hadn't been previously so rude about others choices.

LineRunner Mon 28-Jan-13 20:22:14

I always think politicians are naive of they are critical of any members of public for exercising any perfectly legal and legitimate choices.

In terms of state schools, I just want politicians to work to make every local school a good school. No gimmicks, no re-inventing the wheel, no games and no wasting time slagging off staff and LAs - just a huge drive to make every local school good enough by giving good Head Teachers the tools for the job.

I met Ruth Kelly once. That was an experience.

LaVolcan Mon 28-Jan-13 21:03:59

Could you elaborate more on the experience of meeting Ruth Kelly? Her spell as Education Secretary did seem to finish her political career, and yet she had been well thought of in the Treasury, I believe.

testbunny Mon 28-Jan-13 22:05:11

nick clegg is a disgrace and a hypocrite. he makes a living trying to persuade us of his views, then does the opposite. i make a prediction - he will send his son to a, very difficult to get in, catholic secondary. otherwise, that will be the end for him. however, he will prob be given a euro job, then up in the house of lords, so wont give a toss anyway what everyone thinks! how can anyone ever take anything he takes seriously again. mind you, he has plenty of form..... twxt.

LineRunner Mon 28-Jan-13 22:14:27

Ruth Kelly .... she came to a school where I live and a selection of parents were invited to meet her at a Q&A session. It was the time when she was saying that no new school built under Building Schools for the Future or any other scheme would be able to be a community school.

All the parents were going mad with her.

I said, 'I just want my local school to be good enough - I don't want to have to 'choose' to cart my kids half way across the NE to find some mythical utopian choice,' and she kind of crumpled.

I think her civil servants and Labour colleagues had totally set her up with a policy she couldn't defend in the Labour heartlands. But when she accepted Secretary of State she should have been prepared to be stronger.

LaVolcan Mon 28-Jan-13 23:38:44

I wouldn't have a problem with Clegg sending his children to a catholic secondary because his wife is a committed catholic; it wasn't a case of conveniently finding religion when the children were born and then just as conveniently forgetting it when they are in the desired school.

I suspect he will be the same as the Blairs - there will be some weasily words about why the local catholic secondary isn't good enough, but fine for other people's children.

lainiekazan Wed 30-Jan-13 10:19:01

How can people possibly defend Nick Clegg?

Can you imagine if David Cameron, or indeed any MNetter said that they had to go with a certain school because their spouse said so? They would be pilloried.

The Catholic argument is total crap. If his local Catholic school was dreadful and full of undesirables would he and his wife still insist on sending their dcs there? Like hell they would.

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