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Poll: Do you support the reintroduction of Grammar Schools? Watch

  • View Poll Results: Do you support the reintroduction of Grammar Schools in the UK?
    Yes, but only if we change the admission process (alternative to the 11+)
    36.57%
    Yes, with the current 11+
    51.41%
    No
    12.02%

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    (Original post by Maker)
    Grammers are a waste of time. All they do is allow better off parents to buy houses in its catchment area and tutor their kids to pass the entrance exam.

    It fixes social classes rather than promote social mobility.
    In that case my parents are DAMN good at planning ahead.

    I didn't have any tutors to pass the exam, had I not got in to the grammar school, I would have had no choice but to go to the local comprehensive (I'm not talking about all of them, just mine), where my chances of going to Uni would have been obliterated by the stupid kids who misbehave and kill any chance of my learning in lessons

    and *Grammars. They teach us to spell too.
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    (Original post by jismith1989)
    False. (Source: http://www.guardian.co.uk/education/...condaryschools)

    They gave a ladder up to a select few (who would most probably have done relatively well anyway) from the working class, at the great expense of the rest (especially those in the so-called 'underclass') who were less competitive often due to socio-economic disadvantages. Of course, most TSR users, including myself, may well have been able to get into a grammar school, however. The current system isn't perfect, but it would be a regressive step to return to the failed past.
    I wouldn't say that it's fair to call the past failed. Over the last 20 years our children have actually seen their IQ scores drop rather than increase. Almost all the working class people who have managed to climb up the social ladder and get jobs in government, high finance, and law, attended grammar schools, and now we are starting to see that this trend of working class people managing to reach the highest heights of our society is reversing as the small enclave of intelligent and hard working working class children are dragged down by the masses of children with behavioural problems. My family is by no means rich, and I would say they are upper working class/lower middle class, and I can say with certainty that me and my small group of 'high' achieving friends from my school would have certainly gotten into a grammar school and got a better life.
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    Seems to be the misapprehension from some that grammar schools and public schools are somehow of the same quality simply because the results are similar. Most parents who pay fees for schools do not do so to get better grades, or as a comparison to grammar schools.

    Take where I live, for example - there are a fair few grammar schools and public schools with similar results - Henrietta Barnett and St. Michael's are both selective girls' grammar schools with results as good or better than nearby Channing and NLCS - both selective girls' independent day schools. But in terms of education - is the £12,000 pa difference in wasted if you get to go to grammar school for free? Of course not - there is far more to public school than a bunch of grades. In a similar vein, what about the fee-paying schools that don't have particularly good results? Are all the pupils/parents mugs? Or do they place value on something more intangible, yet valuable?
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    Am I the only one that doesn't support it? There are still going to be a large number of young people in ordinary state education. I know private schools can be controversial because not everyone can afford to go, but why should non-paying people have the right to better education whilst other non paying people won't. If they do reintroduce them, it should be based on ability as well as income. For example, many families that can currently just about afford private education may want to move their children to grammar schools, hence taking up the places of those poorer pupils that could have gone.
    What happens to those left at the bottom?
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    (Original post by Kidioteque)
    I voted "Yes, but only if we change the admission process (alternative to the 11+)" because 1) I strongly believe that people from poorer backgrounds have the right to an education that is equal (or close) to that of independent schools, and 2) because despite this, I feel that the current means of testing isn't an accurate (enough) representation of a child's ability. Admittedly, this is probably partially because I myself failed to get into a grammar school in year 6 and I'm biased (although funnily enough I've got into the same school's sixth form for September), however I also firmly believe that a huge, huge part of somebody's life should not be decided on the basis of one little reasoning test. I feel that they should make their decisions based on a more broad range of information, such as school reports, forecast SATs results, and possibly multiple tests. Not likely to happen, though, as it would cost a lot of extra money which the education sector simply doesn't have.
    Exactly the same situation as myself. I was rejected for entry into year 7, and go to a Grammar School after being accepted into the Sixth Form. I know of course I am going to be a little biased like yourself regarding the application process. I remember people in my class - who were accepted- had private tutoring for the 11+ plus exams, I think this is something that needs to be addressed. But even from someone who feels like they've been screwed over by the admissions, I still think that the advantages outweigh the disadvantages. Just because some might - fairly or unfairly - be unsuccessful in gaining a place, it does not mean that we should limit the opportunities of everyone.

    I'm not sure if anyone knows, has this topic arisen in the TSR HOC?
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    (Original post by Rainbow-Dream)
    Am I the only one that doesn't support it? There are still going to be a large number of young people in ordinary state education. I know private schools can be controversial because not everyone can afford to go, but why should non-paying people have the right to better education whilst other non paying people won't. If they do reintroduce them, it should be based on ability as well as income. For example, many families that can currently just about afford private education may want to move their children to grammar schools, hence taking up the places of those poorer pupils that could have gone.
    What happens to those left at the bottom?
    You speak as though we're taking away comprehensive schools, nothing will change for them. Again, why drag down the people who are willing to try that bit harder for the sake of those who do not? And also, surely it is a good thing if the Grammar schools compete, and perhaps even manage to phase out these private schools, that way education shall be judged on academic achievement and not on how much money daddy has.
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    (Original post by Elipsis)
    I wouldn't say that it's fair to call the past failed. Over the last 20 years our children have actually seen their IQ scores drop rather than increase. Almost all the working class people who have managed to climb up the social ladder and get jobs in government, high finance, and law, attended grammar schools, and now we are starting to see that this trend of working class people managing to reach the highest heights of our society is reversing as the small enclave of intelligent and hard working working class children are dragged down by the masses of children with behavioural problems. My family is by no means rich, and I would say they are upper working class/lower middle class, and I can say with certainty that me and my small group of 'high' achieving friends from my school would have certainly gotten into a grammar school and got a better life.
    IQ testing was initially introduced by the eugenics movement as a way of determining those most and least worthy of reproducing (and then jumped on by social groups like Mensa and professional companies that use similar tests in their admissions procedures); despite having a relatively high IQ myself, it's not a reliable indicator of the nebulous human concept of intelligence. Besides, if one does accept this, there are other factors that one could attribute it to (i.e. the "dumbing down" of exams etc.) -- there's no reason to assume the abolition of the grammar school system is the sole cause or the cause at all.

    If you're currently high-achieving and not in a grammar school, how can you say that you would have done any better? Many studies have shown that students at comprehensives who learn to work well independently do better than those who went to high-achieving schools once at university, because they're better geared up to the challenge. And there are, and will be, fairly significant numbers of former working-class oiks in the law, the City and other such professions. (And, to be honest, what's the great difference between having a plutocratic élite made up mostly of former working-class kids and one of aristos? They both have much the same interests once they're in their positions of power and respectability.) It might also be noted that the working class, whilst still significant, has decreased in size over the past few decades -- it no longeer makes up the vast majority of the country, as it did in the '70s.
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    I voted for the 11+ with the current tests. I live in Buckinghamshire where the test is still used, I failed and went to a lower ranking school than had I passed. I believe this benefited me up until year 11, where I moved and went to a 6th form college, in an area not short of money lets say.

    At the age of 11 I was more interested in Pokemon and lunchtime football than to give two hoots about a multiple choice test, I was 11 for gods sake. I guess if I had been more mature I would have passed. It depends on the individual, I'm quite glad I failed, it gave me the realisation that things in life aren't just going to fall in place and my philosophy that average is ok was over.


    I ended up going to a top 20 uni and am on one of the big four accountancy grad schemes, which for me I don't believe I would have done any better had I gone to grammar. So I wouldn't say it dooms those who fail and certainly benefits those who pass as they are placed with other high achievers.

    The only thing which would worry me is that I have seen some grammar school students get complacent over the 7 years they are there, the majority don't so I believe its for the best.

    Re-introduce them everywhere!
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    I'm curious to see how the Coalition's Academy Programme works out first. I'd like to see it in place for a few decades so we can capture some serious scientific data in regards to it's successes. Of course politicians being politicians I'm sure they'll come up with some other Zany Scheme to replace it/reform it before it's impact has had time to be seriously understood.
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    I don't support them.

    I think on TSR, you'll get an unrepresentative view of how people feel towards them. After all, most of the people on TSR are those that would benefit most from grammar schools.

    I understand that grammar schools have very good benefits for those who attend them.

    However, I feel that segregating the school system into two or three distinct institutions would not be a good idea.

    It would create a two-tier education system in the compulsory sector, which in my opinion would increase the attainment of the few at the expense of the many.

    Whilst of course there comes a time when students must accept the fact that they will be sorted by ability, I think that doing this via the method of sets in comprehensive schools would be the best way for all parties.
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    (Original post by Elipsis)
    There are some good state schools in places like Guildford though, where they don't really have council estates.
    I can assure you while Guilford does have good state schools, it also has council estates.
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    (Original post by fibrebiz)
    In that case my parents are DAMN good at planning ahead.

    I didn't have any tutors to pass the exam, had I not got in to the grammar school, I would have had no choice but to go to the local comprehensive, where my chances of going to Uni would have been obliterated.

    and *Grammars. They teach us to spell too.
    Looks like they spent all their time focusing on spelling, that they neglected to teach you what a proper noun is.
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    theres 3 grammer schools in Plymouth :P
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    (Original post by anoushka1)
    Thats not true , the whole point is that they dont have catchment areas

    I go to a grammar school and I can assure you apart from one person in my year, all of us travel over one hour to get to school , i have to one and a half hours to get there
    Also well off parents would most probably still send their kids to private schools, it the snob value effect
    Some grammar schools have catchment areas - e.g, the ones in Buckinghamshire. Where I live I'm in the catchment area for two grammars and about three 'secondary moderns'.

    I think that grammar schools are good. They encourage people to reach their full potential - as a result, almost everyone who leaves my grammar school goes to unniversity. The teachers are all good; many are excellent.

    Yes, the 'secondary moderns' are quite bad, but where I live people can transfer from them to a grammar school. I personally know two people in my school who transfered in year 8, two in year 9, as well as plenty who transfered in sixth form.

    And I know that there is a disproportionatly large percentage of upper-middle class people at my school, but I put that down to the private primary schools, many of which started intensive 11+ tuition in year 4. (:eek:) Personally, I didn't get private tuition, and not many of my friends did either. All the non-private primary schools covered basic 11+ tuition, and from then on it was mostly the parents who did the 'tutoring'. In fact, I can't think of any people in my primary school who said they did receive tuition, and about 45% of my class went to a grammar school.
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    (Original post by anoushka1)
    Thats not true , the whole point is that they dont have catchment areas

    I go to a grammar school and I can assure you apart from one person in my year, all of us travel over one hour to get to school , i have to one and a half hours to get there
    Also well off parents would most probably still send their kids to private schools, it the snob value effect

    (Original post by KingPrawn0356)
    Actually it's the opposite, the whole point is that they don't have catchment areas so you can't 'buy' your way in like you can with top comprehensives. And social mobility was much higher when they grammar system was still in place.
    Actually some selective schools do have certain postcodes that they accept applications from....
    In regards to the question, I think that the age at which students are selected for these schools is too young. It's a shame that going to a different school can change your whole life, and that an 11 year old has all this responsibility. It changes a small advantage into a massive one over the seven years.
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    (Original post by Fusilero)
    I'm curious to see how the Coalition's Academy Programme works out first. I'd like to see it in place for a few decades so we can capture some serious scientific data in regards to it's successes. Of course politicians being politicians I'm sure they'll come up with some other Zany Scheme to replace it/reform it before it's impact has had time to be seriously understood.
    My Grammar is actually converting to an Academy. It means that the malevolent dictator of a head teacher we have, will be able to bring in things like the IB or force everyone to do certain subjects without having to ask local government.

    The school will remain no less selective though, so I still think the core benefit of not
    being dragged down by the behaviourally challenged will remain.

    (I do not mean to say that people who fail the 11+ are behaviourally challenged, just that the behaviourally challenged don't pass the 11+)

    Also: my school doesn't have a postcode policy. If you came to the school to take the 11+ exam, they assume that everything is fine with regards to travel arrangements. There is no catchment area.
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    I fully support the reintroduction of grammar schools, and if I were education secretary, that's the first thing I would do. They work just fine here in NI, and there are plenty of poor people in my grammar school(before someone trots out that old "only the middle classes get into grammar schools" argument). It's also interesting to note that there are no private secondary schools here(there's only one private primary school that I know of), and I suspect that it's purely because grammars do such a great job.
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    (Original post by .:Doctor:.)
    You speak as though we're taking away comprehensive schools, nothing will change for them. Again, why drag down the people who are willing to try that bit harder for the sake of those who do not? And also, surely it is a good thing if the Grammar schools compete, and perhaps even manage to phase out these private schools, that way education shall be judged on academic achievement and not on how much money daddy has.
    Dragging down people that are willing to try harder?
    Not all pupils that don't attain high grades do so because they are lazy. Some may work hard but struggle. Why should these people be disadvantaged? If anything, the smart ones at state schools should be able to do well even if the teaching quality isn't great, whereas it's the ones that are struggling that will need a lot of help to succeed. I understand that grammar schools will have benefits (those that are smart will do even better at grammars - I'm not going to deny that) but it will only help to create an even bigger divide between those that do well and those that don't.
    The focus needs to be on changing people's attitudes towards education. At the moment the government's plan of giving more money to underperforming schools won't help in my opinion. Education starts at home. Privately education pupils probably don't do well just because their parents pay. They probably will have pushier parents, better attitudes, and a drive to succeed. This mentality is needed at state schools.
    I went to a state school (an above average one) and did well at gcse.
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    We need Grammar schools because the level of teaching and the importance of education is stressed in these schools. It gives those the chance to enhance their learning and allows people to work hard and to aim high. A lot of the people in these Grammar schools aren't natural A-grade students but have the willingness to learn and push themselves to achieve good grades, and once they get to A-level stage they realise knowledge is important.

    Half of the people I know that go to Grammar schools travel 40 mins to get to there, and contrary to belief Grammar schools aren't taken up by posh twits but a large number of ethnic minorities of which their parents feel it is important to have their children well-educated, refelcting the fact they did not have this same opportunity when living in their home country.
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    They really ought to bring them back; who cares about the whiny two tier system argument? Some people are not suited to academia so instead of forcing them to do qualifications which they are clearly not suited to do what they do in Finland, after primary school the academic ones are groups and the more hands on one are grouped and they get to go to different schools in an environment to which they are suited.

    Furthermore this argument that middle class parents would make sure that their children get in annoys me; textbooks and revision guides are not that expensive, whats stopping poorer students buying one and sitting reading that if they want to get into good schools?
 
 
 
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