Thursday, 5 January 2012

The Right Grammar School?

The run-away success of the grammar school petition over the last 3 weeks demonstrates the strength of feeling about the ridiculous situation whereby Sevenoaks does not have sufficient secondary school capacity for its children. News that 400 children are signed up on the petition for a Christian Free School re-inforces concern over the shortage of secondary school places. 

With population increases in the pipeline, and current capacity for less than 50% of the population, it will take more than these two options alone to solve the problem in its entirety. We need all parties including the existing school to come together to see how we might work on a unified solution to the problem. 

If KCC is successful in opening 120 grammar school places in Sevenoaks, these places need to be accessible to children from the Sevenoaks area. Therefore grammar schools that use top marks as their main selection criteria (super-selection), rather than geography cannot be the answer. The current petition calls for "a grammar school in Sevenoaks, to provide a local grammar education for local boys and girls" - but is that wording strong enough?

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