Labour talks about grammar schools as if they are something out of the dark ages. They’re also currently trying to make it easier for them to be abolished by ballot
. Yet, all this disguises the fact that the number of grammars schools pupils in England has been rising steadily under Labour. In 1997 there were 127,780 children
enrolled in grammar schools, by 2007 that number had risen to 156,800
(see Table 16).
Now, with this government we can’t know if this is another failure of an intended policy or proof that Labour just cynically bash grammars for partisan advantage. One other thing worth noting, the next time Balls starts talking about how divided the Tories are on the issue, is that in Stoke it is the Labour MP, Robert Flello, who is campaigning hard to keep the local grammar open.