Unions sign joint letter opposing grammar schools

Eight unions/education organisations have jointly signed a letter voicing opposition to the government’s grammar school plans.

The letter was first published in the Guardian, it reads: “As education organisations representing hundreds of thousands of teachers, support staff, governors and other education professionals, we are united in opposing the government’s plans for expanding selection. It’s clear that most children will lose out in a selective system and most non-grammar schools will find it even harder to recruit. Alarmingly, the green paper does not contain a single word about children with special educational needs and disabilities.

“Comprehensive schools have demonstrated that it is possible to provide high-quality, inclusive education for all children, with 86 per cent of state-funded schools currently rated good or outstanding. A return to selection puts this progress at risk. We call on the government to focus on funding, recruitment and an assessment system that works. And to directly address the poverty and inequality that many children face. Only then can we truly deliver schools that work for everyone.”

The eight signatories are: Mary Bousted, general secretary, Association Of Teachers & Lecturers; Kevin Courtney, general secretary, National Union of Teachers; Kate Fallon, general secretary, Association of Educational Psychologists; Russell Hobby, general secretary, National Association of Head Teachers; Dave Prentis, general secretary, Unison; Tim Roache, general secretary, GMB; Emma Knights, chief executive, National Governors’ Association; and Henry Stewart, founding member, Local Schools Network.

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