Belfast Telegraph

Hoey calls on Tories to visit 'popular' NI grammars

By Rebecca Black

A Labour MP has recommended the Secretary of State for Education visits Northern Ireland to see excellence in education.

Vauxhall MP Kate Hoey - who attended Belfast Royal Academy - made the comments to Justine Greening at Westminster yesterday during a discussion on creating more selective grammar schools in England.

Currently there are 163 such schools in England.

Theresa May told Conservative MPs on Wednesday she wanted "an element of selection" in the education system.

The Prime Minister said "selection by house price" already existed within the state school system, with wealthier parents able to ensure a place for their children at high-performing schools by buying homes in the catchment area.

Most Labour MPs are opposed to creating more grammars. However, Kate Hoey is among a small band in the party to support grammar schools.

She told the Commons: "I think the Secretary of State is quite right not to rule out a discussion on grammar schools as part of the wide types of schools we have in this country, and I declare an interest as a product of a wonderful grammar school."

She urged Ms Greening to visit Northern Ireland, where grammar schools are "hugely popular", education across the board is good and results higher than elsewhere in the UK.

Ms Greening said that the Government will take a "pragmatic" look at new grammar schools but will not be "going back to the past".

Belfast Telegraph


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