Secondary moderns fight back as clamour for grammars grows

The TES is reporting that secondary moderns have begun a campaign to gain greater recognition…

The schools, which take pupils who have failed to pass the 11-plus exam in selective areas, want to raise awareness of the tougher jobs they face because of their lower-ability intakes.

Their numbers could increase if Conservatives pushing for more grammar schools are successful, and secondary modern leaders want to make sure people know they are there.

The newly formed National Association of Secondary Moderns has begun a petition for “more secondary moderns”, which mirrors one calling for more grammars that is backed by 80 Tory MPs.

The logic is simple: as two sides of the same selective coin, you can’t have one type of school without the other.

“With grammar schools come secondary moderns, lots of them,” the association explains. “For every grammar school created there will be an extra three (or more) secondary moderns, assuming grammar schools are selecting the top 25 per cent by academic ability.”

Ian Widdows, one of the association’s founders, said the aim was not to portray the idea of an expansion of either type of school as a good or a bad thing. But it wanted to ensure that people were aware of secondary moderns and the full implications of a grammar school revival…

More at: Secondary moderns fight back as clamour for grammars grows


See more from the campaign on twitter at: @SecModerns


Very clever initiative to raise awareness of the ‘other side’ of the story. Your thoughts? Please share in the comments or via Twitter…


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Categories: Secondary.


  1. Janet2

    Bringing back secondary moderns for the 75% doesn’t have the same positive ring as the call to bring back grammars.  Sorting children at 11 into ‘bright’ and ‘not so bright’ is not going to make the majority of parents happy.

    A YouGov poll in November found only 38% would support building new grammars.

    That said, non-selective schools in selective areas face a triple whammy.  They are perceived by many to be second-best (grammars are described by ministers as ‘our best schools’), they are judged by their results which (obviously) are going to be lower than the grammars and they’re likely to take a larger proportion of disadvantaged children than the area average.

  2. Parent52

    Academies and the 11+ are a toxic mix. Tweeting @UKIP for more secondary modern schools isn’t sophisticated, it’s crass, especially in Boston. How about campaigning for an end to selection as well as just saving your own skin?

  3. Janet2

    Parent52 I think the campaign is meant to be ironic.  It draws attention to the fact that more grammar schools would mean more sec mods.  Although many remaining sec mods do a good job despite their skewed intake doesn’t mean they want to remain sec mods (or even be relabelled ‘comprehensive’ but with the top 25% creamed off).

    Telling people that more selection would result in more schools for the 75% not considered to be ‘bright’ is actually a call for an end to selection.  Nothing to do with people ‘saving’ their ‘own skin’.

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