Grammatical error

September 22, 2016

The creation of grammar schools is an interesting but risky policy (“What will the creation of new grammar schools mean for UK universities?”, 9 September). Presumably, most schools will select by setting their threshold intake at a particular grade in the entrance exam, as with private schools or universities. The existing excellent schools would likely have first pick and increasingly attract the best teachers, followed by a pecking order of variably performing schools. Private tutors and crammers are likely to have a field day. Those at the bottom of the pile, however, would likely end up as problematic sink schools, only able to recruit temporary and transient or incompetent staff, shorn of aspirational students who would mostly leave early or at best be steered into the new 14-19 years Tech level trade courses.

Even if the new system drives up educational performance through enhanced competition within the state-school sector, state schools are confined within a common funding allocation, so the better private schools will likely just increase fees to fund the costs of enhancing performance to match any rise in exam results achieved, so as to retain undiminished access to Oxbridge and a few other prestigious universities. This will largely neutralise the state’s attempts to increase social mobility at the top end, and therefore won’t address the poor standard of UK advanced technical education so desperately needed to drive a modern UK economy.

W. Speedway
Via timeshighereducation.com


Send to

Letters should be sent to: THE.Letters@tesglobal.com
Letters for publication in Times Higher Education should arrive by 9am Monday.
View terms and conditions.

You've reached your article limit

Register to continue

Registration is free and only takes a moment. Once registered you can read a total of 6 articles each month, plus:

  • Sign up for the editor's highlights
  • Receive World University Rankings news first
  • Get job alerts, shortlist jobs and save job searches
  • Participate in reader discussions and post comments
Register

Have your say

Log in or register to post comments

Featured Jobs

Assistant Professorship in Behavioural Science LONDON SCHOOL OF ECONOMICS & POLITICAL SCIENCE LSE
Foundation Partnerships Officer LONDON SCHOOL OF ECONOMICS & POLITICAL SCIENCE LSE

Most Commented

James Fryer illustration (8 September 2016)

Some lecturers will rightly encourage forms of student interaction that are impossible for those covering their faces, Eric Heinze argues

University of Oxford students walking on campus

University of Oxford snatches top spot from Caltech in this year’s World University Rankings as Asia’s rise continues

Handwritten essay on table

Universities must pay more attention to the difficulties faced by students, says Daniel Dennehy

Theresa May entering 10 Downing Street, London

The prospect of new grammar schools on the horizon raises big questions for HE, writes Nick Hillman

Nosey man outside window

Head of UK admissions service Mary Curnock Cook addresses concerns that universities might ‘not hear a word’ from applicants