Grammar school could “present great opportunity” for Corby, says town’s MP

Tom Pursglove.
Tom Pursglove.

Corby’s MP Tom Pursglove has given his backing to a campaign to create a grammar school in the town.

Prime Minister Theresa May recently announced that a ban on new grammar schools, which can select pupils based on ability, would end.

After £60m was set aside to be invested in “social mobility cold-spots”, one Corby resident felt it was the sort of educational funding the town needed.

And after contacting Mr Pursglove, the Conservative MP has offered to present a petition in Parliament.

Mr Pursglove said: “I was contacted by a constituent who has started a petition to bring a grammar school to Corby, and passed his comments on to the Department for Education.

“Like him, I was pleased with the Prime Minister’s recent announcement about grammar schools and strongly believe that there has to be a mixture of routes to success available for our young people.

“Different things work in different areas, and grammar schools could present a great opportunity for our area, so I look forward to this policy developing.

“I also strongly believe that local education decisions must be locally led and so have offered to present the petition formally in Parliament to bring local support to the Government’s attention.”

Grammar schools have been a contentious issue in recent weeks with opponents saying they give an unfair advantage to children of parents who can afford private tuition.

The first six areas set to receive a share of the £60m pot have been announced, with Blackpool, Derby, Norwich, Oldham, Scarborough and West Somerset awarded funding.

A further four areas will also receive funding and resident Gordon Bowie, who started the petition to bring a grammar school to Corby, wants the town’s opportunities to be recognised.

He said: “Corby and the local area offers a variety of educational opportunities for children to succeed in subjects such as the arts, business and vocational training.

“We need to offer the same opportunities to excel to those children whose talents lie in the ‘traditional’ academic disciplines.

“Secondary comprehensives, with their broader focus on many subjects, and vastly differing pupil aptitudes and interests, are not best placed to meet this need.

“Too often the comprehensive system results in a levelling down of pupil attainment.

“A grammar school in Corby would provide an aptitude centred educational environment that complements the aspirations of children who have positively ‘bought in’ to that culture.”

To sign the petition, click here.