Classes open to the talented poor

15th December 2000 at 00:00
You are guilty of false advertising of Peter Lampl's platform piece (TES, November 24). It attributes to Lampl the extraordinarily radical claim that "if poor children are to spread their wings, private schools should be open to all, regardless of family income".

The article tells a different story - he thinks that private schools should be open only to highly-talented poor children.

This claim is not consistent with moving towad greater educational equality, nor is it good for many of the talented poor.

In siphoning off some of the talented poor from the state sector, private schools add a benefit to those children, but at huge costs to those children left in the state schools. The less talented are deprived of the critical mass of a peer group.

Harry Brighouse Professor of philosophy of education Institute of Education University of London

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