The return of grammar schools?

The first new grammar school for more than 40 years is set to open in Kent. And it will surely pave the way for many more. I’m always surprised that those who lean to the left aren’t vociferous supporters of grammar schools. They were set up to give poorer kids the chance to compete on level terms with those from more privileged backgrounds. Many from humble beginnings – including, from 1964 to 1997, five successive prime ministers – attributed their stellar careers to a grammar school education. As did writers, artists and rock stars. Britain’s worldwide dominance of pop culture in the 1960s was largely the work of ex-grammar school pupils. 75% of The Who, for instance, met at Acton County Grammar. And if they hadn’t, this is just one of countless pieces of music that would never, ever have been written.