Sunday, May 14, 2006

The positive side of academies

In his 1996 book on education, We Should Know Better, the former Conservative minister George Walden wrote:

In no other European country do the moneyed and professional classes - lawyers, surgeons, businessmen, accountants, diplomats, newspaper and TV editors, judges, directors, archbishops, air chief marshalls, senior academics, Tory ministers, artists, authors, top civil servants - in addition to the statistically insignificant but eye-catching cohort of aristocracy and royalty - reject the system of education used by the overwhelming majority pretty well out of hand, as an inferior product.

In no modern democracy except Britain is tribalism in education so entrenched that the two main political parties send their children to different schools.

I think he is right and that this divide between independent and state schools is the great unspoken problem of British education.

Therefore I was pleased to see Mike Baker writing this on the BBC website:
Two successful independent schools - Belvedere Girls and William Hulme's Grammar School - are planning to leave the fee-charging sector to become academies. Others could follow.
Those who are not so pleased should explain how they would go about making this divide less of a chasm than it is today.

1 comment:

Bishop Hill said...

Privatise all state schools.