A thoughtful piece by Nick Cohen in the Evening Standard.
He talks of the need to “challenge a school system that goes out of its way to stop bright children from modest backgrounds enjoying the advantages of the children of the professional classes.”
That’s the thinking behind the pupil premium advocated by David Laws MP on his visit to Islington before Christmas. Giving extra money to schools taking poorer pupils to bring them closer to private school funding levels would meet Cohen’s challenge, without the divisive impact of the old grammar/secondary modern divide.
It’s impossible to stop middle-class parents – Labour MPs included – working the system. Every parent will want to do the best for their kids, after all. But the genius of the pupil premium idea is that money doesn’t just follow the pupil, but the most impoverished ones, irrespective of what their richer neighbours do.