02:09PM, Monday 12 December 2016
Council leader Simon Dudley made the following statement at cabinet on November 24 during the discussion on selective education: 'At the moment in our maintained schools less than 10 pupils go to Oxbridge'.
He went on to say this does not look good and something should be done about it. His aim is clear, 'we want our education system to be the best local authority in England, and work with our fantastic schools to make that happen,' he said.
Cllr Dudley is right – we do have fantastic schools and he should look at the number of our students who gain places at the elite Russell Group of universities. In 2015 more than 110 students were awarded places at these top 24 universities which include Oxford and Cambridge.
The Russell Group of universities awards 60 per cent of all doctorates in the UK. It is also important to note this group of universities also attracts top students from across the world.
The destination of students in 2016 is not yet in the public domain but I am aware four students from one of our seven comprehensive schools in the RBWM have been awarded places at Oxbridge and a significant number have gained places at the other universities in the Russell Group.
The council is investing money into our schools which is excellent news. It should now support and help to develop our existing comprehensive education system rather than re-introducing grammar schools.
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