Sunday, 14 August 2016

Value Added?

Something or other has popped into Owen Smith’s head. Oh, well, whether or not he means a word of it, at least he has opened up the debate a bit.

In England, the commercial schools sector inspects itself.

Therefore, let the condition of a commercial school’s continuing charitable status be its having been adjudged satisfactory or better by Ofsted, using the same criteria as for state schools, with the reports published.

And with the value-added measure applied, thereby requiring those schools to have demonstrated how they had improved pupils’ abilities.

What better way to assess entitlement or otherwise to exemption from Value Added Tax?


  1. Proper policy. We need you back in the party immediately and into Parliament as soon as possible, you should have been in it for years by now.

  2. Peter Hitchens is on great form in today's MOS.

    The grammar schools debate will never go away because it is fundamentally a debate about something else altogether.

    Grammar schools represent traditional rightwing British values; discipline, hard work before reward, adult authority, justified discrimination, aspiration and elitism.

    Comprehensive schools represent the socialist values of non-discrimination, levelling-down and egalitarianism.

    They are emblems of the wider division between Left and Right crystallised in the Remain and Leave campaigns.

    1. There is no "grammar schools debate". There is him (plus Simon Heffer occasionally), and then there is absolutely everyone else.

      The referendum result was about nothing except itself. That was why there was a referendum. It has killed the only party that had a policy of withdrawal from the EU. Or of bringing back grammar schools, come to that.

    2. A referendum on what? When did that happen?

      As you yourself once said, Mr. L., there is no more chance of bringing back grammar schools than binging back pre-decimal currency. Hitchens more or less admits that in his column today.

  3. "There is no grammar schools debate."

    I think you'll find there is when Theresa May pledges to reintroduce them at October's conference.

    70-80% pf the public want them back in the latest polls.

    100 Tory MPs back the campaign led by Graham Brady to bring them back.

    Every serious commentator now recognises the referendum result was emblematic of a much wider cultural division across British society.

    Analysis of 180,000 voters buying habits has shown even the brands that Leave and Remain voters like are radically different, with Leave voters more likely to buy British.

    It represents the real political and cultural divisions in this country, unlike the mainstream parties.

    They all fought on the same (losing) side in the referendum.

    1. 70 per cent of Labour seats voted Leave. In 2020, they'll vote Labour. Just as they always do.

      May's own party has already shot down the grammar schools kite in a hail of bullets. Exactly as she intended. She wanted to kill the issue, even within her own party. And she has.

  4. 40% of Labour voters joined the majority of Tory voters to explicitly defy the instructions of their own parties, yes.

    The divide between Leave and Remain voters exposed in the polls (I did laugh to discover the cultural divide is so deep that Leave voters prefer British brands like HP sauce and Richmond sausages) is the real division of opinion in this country.

    General Elections between two liberal, anti-British parties unfairly divide the patriotic majority of voters-socially conservative Tory voters and Northern Labour voters-who are plainly on the same side of every major issue, from immigration to foreign rule.

    A tiny minority of Tory MPs oppose grammar schools, but they haven't "shot down" the plans at all.

    East Germany brought back grammar schools in the 1990's as soon as the miserable Communist regime collapsed there.

    It can be done, in an instant.

    All it takes is the simple repeal of the disgracefully totalitarian New Labour legislation banning the creation of new grammar schools, by parents and communities that want them.

    My German friends often ask why they inspire such visceral feelings here, when in Germany and the Netherlands, grammar schools enjoy unanimous political support.

    I explain that, in our ridiculous country, the Left decided that the purpose of education was social engineering, transforming the way that schools admit children into a major political issue.

    1. I wouldn't make this about HP Sauce (which I adore), if I were you. That way lies political ridicule.