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Past TimesEd

25 years ago

July 1, 1977

Selection, far from being on the retreat in Britain's secondary schools, could well be making a comeback, according to a group of comprehensive campaigners.

They call for urgent government action to secure a genuinely comprehensive system.

Selection is still widespread, and they are particularly worried that it may even be brought back in some place where it has ended.

50 years ago

July, 4 1952

The Manx kipper is smaller than others; but its supporters maintain that it makes up for that in its excellence. This year's meeting of the Association of Education Committees at Douglas seemed to follow the local fish in size. The same could not be said of its quality. Delegates were admittedly spared the kind of inanity that demanded strong comment last year; but much of their time was taken up with a weary round of platitudes...

It was left then, to SIR FREDERICK MANDER to rouse the conference to a sense of purpose... When he dismissed some publications of the Ministry as "flocculent pamphlets" he brought his audience to an oasis in a conference that was a desert of dry verbosity.

75 years ago

July 2, 1927

IT is fair to say that, at the end of a quarter of a century's acknowledged progress in modern language teaching, there is general disatisfaction as far as oral attainments are concerned. More modern languages are taught, more intensively and more intelligently taught, than at the end of the nineteenth century. Yet the sixth-form boy, the Oxford undergraduate - even the modern language master - who goes abroad for the holidays is too often quite unable to put together two consecutive sentences of French.

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