Back To The Past: Why Do We Want Grammar Schools?

Before you read this, I thought it would be interesting and relevant to mention that I had to use spellcheck for about four words in this article…


I’m sure that I’d have had a great time if I’d started my school life at a Grammar- but I’m even more sure that I wouldn’t have had anywhere near the same experiences, or met any of the same people…

It’s hard to say whether I would have passed the ’11 plus’. On one hand I was never particularly academic- just about scraping the national average on my End of Primary Test (not that you’re held to it). On the other hand, I could have scraped it, and I have very supportive parents. Let’s imagine I failed the test first.

Because of this I would end up going to your bog-standard Secondary School- or Secondary Moderns as they were known. The Government insists that none of the social stigma that used to be around will come back, but everyone who ends up in a regular secondary school will know that they could have potentially got into something better. On top of this, there’s how this would have affected my personal life: I would probably never have met some of my more academically minded friends- of whom I’ve spent many of my days with, sharing stories and experiences.

So what if I had passed? Well, then I would probably be in a better learning environment, with like-minded academics, and be more highly regarded in society at this time. But guess what? I would never have met some of my class mates, who suffered from learning difficulties and required Learning Support. Despite these people being less academically capable, they were my best friends. And although they probably had lower expected grades than the national average- we all had the most stimulating conversations outside the classroom environment.

Why have they got the right to separate me from my friends just because of my intellect? Why can they re-write the good times and in-valuable memories we had- just because of my score on a test? The worst thing is it’s not just that. It’s inevitable that those who can afford it will pay for private tuition for their kids so that they can pass their exams. So it’s not just discriminating on intellect, it’s discriminating against income.

I hope that these changes don’t go underway, but if they do- I encourage people who share the same opinion as me to boycott the seemingly regular End of Primary Test- which, once Grammars are introduced, will determine which schools you can enter. At least then everyone who does not wish to be segregated- won’t be…



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