Michael Charles makes a statement to the media about Grammar Schools

It is interesting that the policy to promote Grammar schools is highlighting a distinct contrast to the Welsh law which forbids the creation of new schools of this kind. It is long established that Local Government is under an obligation by law to promote high standards in its schools although it is questionable whether this is a course pursuant to those objectives. The benefits include the idea that it increases the prospect of social mobility, enhancing exam results and perhaps helps permit schools to progress without the kind of interference that exists in Wales for example where the law permits Government to have a much more and often direct role in Education. Politically, others will say it is divisive and raises the prospect of greater chance of breaches of Equality, as selection may be made at the age of 11, whereupon many with learning difficulties may only, then recognise that they have a difficulty requiring to be addressed. ADHD for example is often diagnosed later and children with unaddressed language difficulties may have not have performed as well by the age of 11, as they could otherwise due to tests evaluating performance are often based on sound sensory and language ability. One wonders whether the perhaps nostalgic idea of an old education system favouring the middle class, is a strong enough case, or is it the argument to allow our teachers to continue to deliver high quality teaching without Government interference? The Government must however recognise the Equality Act issues which might render it too high a price to pay.

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