In what it claims is “an apparent hint at future Tory education policy”, the Mail is reporting that David Cameron has said all schools should put pupils in sets based on ability…
…In an interview with Woman & Home magazine, the Prime Minister said: ‘All schools, in my view, should set by ability, particularly in English and maths.’
…Last autumn the Tories announced plans to allow setting to be imposed to help turn around failing schools.
Although Mr Cameron’s comments suggest he wants to go considerably further, a senior Tory source insisted he was not announcing new policy…
The source said: ‘As his comments suggest, the Prime Minister is a very strong supporter of setting – it’s about placing children with others of similar ability so that they can learn at the right pace.
‘Where a school is failing we think it is right that part of the toolkit for putting things right should include bringing in setting.
‘The vast majority of schools already set in core subjects, and if there is a successful school doing very well without setting then we would not impose it – we want to take a pragmatic approach…”
Under the existing Tory plans, announced last autumn, regional schools commissioners would be given new powers to impose setting in failing schools as part of a package to turn them around…
Thoughts and reactions to these comments from the prime minister? And are there many schools that don’t actually set by ability to at least some degree now?
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