Grammar axe put paid to the Oxbridge many

1st July 2011 at 01:00

Schools minister Nick Gibb is to be congratulated for talking up the success of our remaining grammar schools and allowing them to expand.

Having read that there are currently over 1,000 grammar school-educated undergraduates at Oxbridge, I cannot help but reflect that if grammar school numbers had not been decimated, that number would be somewhere in the region of 7,800. This figure is arrived at in the following way.

In the 1970s there were approximately 1,200 grammar schools. Now there are 164. Therefore, 1,000 students at Oxbridge can be multiplied by 7.3, which equals 7,300. Add 7 per cent to allow for the rise in UK population since the 1970s. The final figure is 7,800.

Looked at another way, had it not been for the decimation of the grammar schools, another 25,200 (by my calculation) state-educated pupils would have had the chance to avail themselves of an Oxbridge education during the past 40 years.

Dr Andrew Norman, Formerly of Midsomer Norton Grammar School and St Edmund Hall, Oxford.

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number


The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now