Free schools leader warns Government to be cautious on grammar schools

'Grammar schools could be beneficial if those from poorer backgrounds attend', says New Schools Network

More funding for grammar schools is to be announced (Stock image)

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

The head of a charity supporting the establishment of free schools has told Theresa May to be cautious if she wants to reintroduce selective education.

Toby Young was speaking to Julia Hartley-Brewer ahead of tomorrow's Budget, when Chancellor Philip Hammond is expected to announce hundreds of millions of pounds for new free schools - with the implicit understanding that many of these new academic outlets will be created as grammar schools, along the lines of Theresa May's flagship policy.

The creation of new selective schools is currently banned but Mrs May, a strong advocate of selective education, is expected to begin the process of overturning the ban imminently to facilitate the new free grammar schools.

Young, head of the New Schools Network, told Julia "if the government is sensible about the way it brings back grammars, it will be sensitive [about how to go about it]."

The interviewee also said that, while he isn't against grammar schools, "there is some evidence that children not at selective schools in selective areas fair slightly worse.

“I’m not making the case against grammars, I’m just explaining why some people are a little bit concerned."

Listen to the full interview above