This article needs additional citations for verification . (September 2010) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
In England and Wales, a comprehensive school is a type of secondary school that does not select its intake on the basis of academic achievement or aptitude or the wealth of the parents of the children it accepts.
There were 24,323 schools in England in 2018. There were 391 nurseries, 16,769 primary schools, 3,448 secondary schools, 2,319 independent schools, 1,044 special schools and 352 pupil referral units (PRUs). In Wales there were 1,569 schools. There were 9 nursery schools, 1,238 primary schools, 19 middle schools, 187 secondary schools, 75 independent schools and 41 special schools.
Before the Second World War, secondary education provision in Britain was both patchy and expensive. After the war, secondary education in England, Wales and Northern Ireland was provided free to at least the age of 14 under a policy introduced by Conservative Secretary of State for Education R.A. Butler. The Education Act 1944 made provision for primary, secondary and further education but did not mention the 11+ exam or the tripartite system (secondary modern, secondary technical and grammar school). 'The tripartite system was no more than the continuation of the 19th century class-based system of English education which had been promoted by the reports of Spens (1938) and Norwood (1943)' (D. Gillard, 2011) [ citation needed ]. However, as a result of the flexibility of the Education Act 1944, many Local Education Authorities (LEAs) were free to choose how to establish the secondary school sector. Many LEAs chose to adopt the tripartite system described in Norwood's 1943 report.
Pupils sat the 11+ examination in their last year of primary education and were sent to one of a secondary modern, secondary technical or grammar school depending on their perceived ability. As it transpired, secondary technical schools were never widely implemented and for 20 years there was a virtual bipartite system which saw fierce competition for the available grammar school places, which varied between 15% and 25% of total secondary places, depending on location.[ citation needed ]
Comprehensive schooling was introduced in 1965 by the Labour Government of the time.
The first comprehensives were set up after the Second World War. In 1946, for example, Walworth School was one of five 'experimental' comprehensive schools set up by the London County CouncilAnother early comprehensive school was Holyhead County School in Anglesey in 1949. Other places that experimented with comprehensives included Coventry, Sheffield, Leicestershire, and the West Riding of Yorkshire.
These early comprehensives mostly modelled themselves, in terms of ethos, on the grammar school, with gown-wearing teachers conducting lessons in a very formal style. Some comprehensive schools have continued to follow this model, especially those that were themselves grammar schools before becoming comprehensives. The opening of Risinghill School in Islington in 1960 offered an alternative to this model. Embracing the progressive ideals of sixties education, the school abandoned corporal punishment and brought in a much more liberal attitude to discipline and methods of study. However, this idea did not take hold in many places.
The largest expansion of comprehensive schools resulted from a policy decision taken in 1965 by Anthony Crosland, Secretary of State for Education in the 1964–1970 Labour government, a fervent supporter of comprehensive education. This had been the party's policy for some time. The policy decision was implemented by Circular 10/65, an instruction to local education authorities to plan for conversion.
In 1970 the Conservative Party re-entered government. Margaret Thatcher became Secretary of State for Education, and ended the compulsion on local authorities to convert. However, many local authorities were so far down the path that it would have been prohibitively expensive to attempt to reverse the process, and more comprehensive schools were established under Mrs Thatcher than any other education secretary. However, she went on to be a ferocious critic of comprehensive education. By 1975 the majority of local authorities in England and Wales had abandoned the eleven-plus examination and moved to a comprehensive system.
Over that 10-year period many secondary modern schools and grammar schools were amalgamated to form large neighbourhood comprehensives, whilst a number of new schools were built to accommodate a growing school population. By 1968 around 20% of children had been in comprehensives, and by the mid-1970s the system had been almost fully implemented. Nearly all new schools were built as comprehensives, and existing grammar and modern schools had either been closed (see for example the Liverpool Institute) or amalgamated with neighbouring secondary moderns to produce comprehensive schools. A small number of local education authorities have held out against the trend, such as Kent. In those places, grammar schools, secondary modern schools and selection at 11 continue.
Note: Cumbria and Telford have one selective school.
In 1976 the future Labour prime minister James Callaghan gave a speech at Oxford's Ruskin College. He launched what became known as the 'great debate' on the education system. He went on to list the areas he felt needed closest scrutiny: the case for a core curriculum, the validity and use of informal teaching methods, the role of school inspection and the future of the examination system. Callaghan was not the first to raise these questions. A 'black paper' attacking liberal theories in education and poor standards in comprehensive schools had appeared in 1969, to be followed by a second in 1971. The authors were the academics Brian Cox and A.E. Dyson. They were supported by certain head teachers, notably Dr. Rhodes Boyson, who later became a Conservative MP. The black papers called for a return to traditional teaching methods and an end to the comprehensive experiment.
Since the 1988 Education Reform Act, parents have a right to choose which school their child should go to. This concept of "school choice" introduces the idea of competition between state schools, a fundamental change to the original "neighbourhood comprehensive" model, and is partly intended as a means by which schools that are perceived to be inferior are forced either to improve or, if hardly anyone wants to go there, to close down. Government policy is currently[ when? ] promoting 'specialisation' whereby parents choose a secondary school appropriate for their child's interests and skills. Most initiatives focus on parental choice and information, implementing a pseudo-market incentive to encourage better schools. This logic has underpinned the controversial league tables of school performance.
Comprehensive schools remained the most common type of state secondary school in England, and the only type in Wales. They accounted for around 90% of pupils, or 64% if one does not count schools with low-level selection. This figure varied by region. Both Conservative Party and Labour governments experimented with alternatives to the original neighbourhood comprehensive.
Experiments have included:
Following the advice of Sir Cyril Taylor—former businessman and Conservative politician, and chairman of the Specialist Schools and Academies Trust (SSAT)—in the mid-1990s, both major parties have backed the creation of specialist schools, which focus on excellence in a particular subject and are theoretically allowed to select up to 10% of their intake. This policy consensus had brought to an end the notion that all children will go to their local school, and assumes parents will send their child to the school they feel they are most suited to.[ citation needed ]
A grammar school is one of several different types of school in the history of education in the United Kingdom and other English-speaking countries, originally a school teaching Latin, but more recently an academically oriented secondary school, differentiated in recent years from less academic secondary modern schools. The main difference is that a grammar school may select pupils based on academic achievement whereas a secondary modern may not.
The Metropolitan Borough of Wirral is a metropolitan borough of Merseyside, in North West England. It has a population of 321,238, and encompasses 60 square miles (160 km2) of the northern part of the Wirral Peninsula. Major settlements include Birkenhead, Wallasey, Bebington, Heswall, Hoylake and West Kirby. The city of Liverpool over the Mersey, faces the northeastern side of Wirral.
The eleven-plus (11+) is an examination administered to some students in England and Northern Ireland in their last year of primary education, which governs admission to grammar schools and other secondary schools which use academic selection. The name derives from the age group for secondary entry: 11–12 years.
Education in England is overseen by the United Kingdom's Department for Education. Local government authorities are responsible for implementing policy for public education and state-funded schools at a local level.
The Tripartite System was the arrangement of state-funded secondary education between 1945 and the 1970s in England and Wales, and from 1947 to 2009 in Northern Ireland. It was an administrative implementation of the Education Act 1944 and the Education Act 1947.
Education in Northern Ireland differs from systems used elsewhere in the United Kingdom, although it is relatively similar to Wales. A child's age on 1 July determines the point of entry into the relevant stage of education, unlike England and Wales where it is 1 September. Northern Ireland's results at GCSE and A-Level are consistently top in the UK. At A-Level and BTEC level 3, one third of students in Northern Ireland achieved A and distinction grades in 2007, which is a higher proportion than in England and Wales.
The Metropolitan Borough of Dudley is a metropolitan borough of West Midlands in England. It was created in 1974 following the Local Government Act 1972, through a merger of the existing Dudley County Borough with the municipal boroughs of Stourbridge and Halesowen. The borough borders Sandwell to the east, the city of Birmingham to the south east, Bromsgrove to the south in Worcestershire, South Staffordshire District to the west, and the city of Wolverhampton to the north.
A comprehensive school is a public school for elementary aged or secondary aged children that does not select its intake on the basis of academic achievement or aptitude, in contrast to the selective school system where admission is restricted on the basis of selection criteria. The term is commonly used in relation to England and Wales, where comprehensive schools were introduced as state schools on an experimental basis in the 1940s and became more widespread from 1965. With the Blair educational reforms from 2003, they may be part of a local education authority or be a self governing academy or part of a multi-academy trust.
A secondary modern school is a type of secondary school that existed throughout England, Wales and Northern Ireland from 1944 until the 1970s under the Tripartite System. Schools of this type continue in Northern Ireland, where they are usually referred to as secondary schools, and in areas of England, such as Buckinghamshire, Lincolnshire and Wirral,.
Circular 10/65 was a government circular issued in 1965 by the Department of Education and Science (DES) requesting Local Education Authorities (LEAs) in England and Wales to begin converting their secondary schools to the Comprehensive System. For most of England and Wales, it marked the abolition of the old grammar schools and secondary moderns, and the 11-plus examination. Circular 10/65 was the initiative of recently appointed Education Secretary Anthony Crosland; it is sometimes called the Crosland Circular. It reflected the Labour government's view that the existing Tripartite System of education was flawed, and had to be replaced with comprehensive schools, which had been increasing in number over the previous sixteen years.
The grammar schools debate is a debate about the merits and demerits of the existence of grammar schools in the United Kingdom. Grammar schools are state schools which select their pupils on the basis of academic ability, with pupils sitting an exam in the last year of primary school to determine whether or not they gain a place. The debate on selective education has been widened by measures which allow a proportion of students to be chosen based on their "aptitude" for a particular subject.
A secondary technical school was a type of secondary school in England and Wales that existed in the mid-20th century under the Tripartite System of education. For various reasons few were built, and their main interest is on a theoretical level.
The raising of school leaving age is the term used by the government for changes of the age at which a child is allowed to leave compulsory education in England and Wales as specified under an Education Act.
Strand School was a boys' grammar school in the Tulse Hill area of South London. It moved there in 1913 from its original location at King's College in London's Strand.
Stanwell School is a co-educational foundation status comprehensive school and Sixth form college located in Penarth, Vale of Glamorgan, Wales, for children aged between eleven and eighteen. The school is in the town of Penarth, 5 mi (8.0 km) south-west from Cardiff.
In England, a partially selective school is one of a few dozen state-funded secondary schools that select a proportion of their intake by ability or aptitude, permitted as a continuation of arrangements that existed prior to 1997. Though treated together by current legislation, they are of two types: bilateral schools in remnants of the Tripartite System, and former grant-maintained schools that introduced partial selection in the 1990s. While technically classified as comprehensive schools, they occupy a middle ground between grammar schools and true comprehensives, and many of the arguments for and against grammar schools also apply to these schools. Although there are relatively few schools of this type, several of them score very highly in national performance tables, and are among the most over-subscribed schools in the country.
Bournville School is a secondary school and primary school with academy status, for students aged 4–16, in Bournville, Birmingham in the United Kingdom.
The history of education in England is documented from Saxon settlement of England, and the setting up of the first cathedral schools in 597 and 604.
A direct grant grammar school was a type of selective secondary school in England and Wales that existed between 1945 and 1976. One quarter of the places in these schools were directly funded by central government, while the remainder attracted fees, some paid by the Local Education Authority and some by the parents of pupils; the amounts were set according to ability to pay. On average, the schools received just over half of their income from the state.
English state-funded schools, commonly known as state schools, provide education to pupils between the ages of 3 and 18 without charge. Approximately 93% of English schoolchildren attend 20,000 or so such schools. Since 2008 about 75% have attained "academy status", which essentially gives them a higher budget per pupil from the Department for Education.