Wednesday, 2 March 2011

Another Tory Myth Bites the Dust

In recent years there's been  a lot of comment about the apparent lack of social mobility, and whether the demise of grammar schools has closed a route to an upward trajectory for working class children.

There's an interesting story in the Guardian today covering some research done at the universities of Oxford and Bath Spa. The researchers used data from the National Child Development Survey, which has tracked thousands of adults now aged 53, since they were born. One conclusion was that Grammar schools had no real impact on socal mobility for working class children. The few working class few kids that benefit is outweighed by the number that lose out from going to secondary modern schools.

So another right wing myth is scorched. There has been no disadvantage from the Comprehensives, and the reintroduction of selection would in all probablity have a detrimental effect on those who lose out, and would have no compensating beneficial effect on social mobility.


  1. That's entirely the point - those who advocate the re-introduction of selective education seem oblivious of the effects on the 90 - 95% of those who don't get through the tests. There always seems to be the assumption that no-one loses.

  2. I seem to recall that a lot of pressure for comprehensives came from middle class parents whose children had failed the 11 plus....

    Particuarly if Johnnie passed and got into the local grammar and younger brother Andy failed and was pushed into the 2nd class stream....

    People forget...and that's the conservatives biggest weapon...