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Welsh faith in comprehensives faces test


Resistance in Wales to a return to selection will come under new pressure following the measures set out in the White Paper. As in England, comprehensives will have to consider selection each year once legislation is passed.

Wales has no secondary schools which operate selection by ability, and no grammar schools. Last year, the Olchfa secondary school in Swansea was refused the option to introduce 10 per cent selection based on ability in music and maths.

Bruce Hawkins, president of the Welsh Secondary Schools Association believes that the Government's selection proposals could prove a hot political potato. "There is bound to be antagonistic marketing and this will be at the expense of 11-18 schools, which is bound to create animosity," he says.

Welsh schools will receive an extra Pounds 40 million a year from local education authorities under the White Paper's proposal to increase delegation of budgets to 95 per cent from the present 90 per cent.

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