Could Government have its eye on East Cambs or Fenland for one of the first generation of new super grammar schools?

PUBLISHED: 15:36 09 February 2017 | UPDATED: 15:36 09 February 2017

Justine Greening, Secretary of State for Education. Could she be looking to East Cambs or Fenland for a new super grammar school? Some seem to think so. PHOTO: Supplied

Justine Greening, Secretary of State for Education. Could she be looking to East Cambs or Fenland for a new super grammar school? Some seem to think so. PHOTO: Supplied

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East Cambs or Fenland could be one of first parts of the country to get one of Prime Minister Theresa May's elite super grammar schools.

The possibility was being discussed today by education chiefs following a briefing note between ministers and reported in today’s Times newspaper.

The briefing appears to suggest Mrs May will opt to build the first of the new generation of grammar schools in some of the 12 areas that have recently been designated ‘opportunity areas’.

East Cambs and Fenland has been singled out by the Times as being one of the likely candidates for a new grammar school that are aimed to cater for the brightest 10 per cent of children. The criteria for entry could be on a par with some of the nation’s most elite public schools and far above the 25 per cent threshold adopted by the country’s existing 163 grammar schools.

A vision of what the new schools will look like was revealed by the Times in extracts from a newsletter they obtained detailing a series of meetings between head teachers, senior civil servants, education minister Justine Greening and schools minister Nick Gibb,.

Angela Rayner, the shadow education secretary, tweeted: “Unbelievable grammar school heads have been given inside track on the government plans while our state schools and academies are left out in the cold.”

The Department for Education did not comment directly on the note.

Last month the Government announced that Fenland and East Cambridgeshire will be one of 12 areas to secure a total of £72 million, as new social mobility “opportunity areas”.

Locally it means Fenland and East Cambs schools will now have access to around £6 million of new funding, separate to any other funding streams they have. This is to spend in the period between now and 2020.

One school will also benefit from extra cash to become effectively a research centre to share best practice.

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