Buckinghamshire County Councillors on the Skills and Children’s Services Select Committee grilled the head teachers from Buckinghamshire’s Grammar Schools at a meeting on Wednesday 19th November 2014 which looked at the impact of the new eleven plus tests.
The special meeting was called by the Select Committee to find out whether the new tests which were introduced in 2013 and are now owned by the Grammar Schools, is achieving a fairer school selection process for all children in Buckinghamshire.
The meeting provided an opportunity for the cross-party group of councillors to question the Heads about their report which included data from the first round of testing.
Chair of the committee, Valerie Letheren, said: ‘I think this was a very productive meeting. We at the Select Committee, which is cross party, really gave the headteachers a grilling about the tests.
We also had some helpful contributions from representatives of primary and secondary heads, some of whom thought the tests were going in the right direction.
But what we really wanted to make sure of, was that every child has as fair a chance as possible. So we asked the grammar schools – did they feel this was moving towards that, and whether it was achievable. I think the issue is that it’s only the first year and they have only just done the second year of tests for which the data hasn’t been analysed yet.
We asked the grammar heads to return to us again next year to present that data as this is a continuing debate, and they were very willing to do that.‘
Head of Chesham Grammar and Chairman of the Bucks Grammar Schools, Philip Wayne said: ‘We were delighted to be invited by the Select Committee to discuss the provision we made and how we intend to develop the test over time, but to also listen to very real concerns and either assuage them or aim to resolve them.‘
To watch the meeting in full visit www.buckscc.public-i.tv/core/portal/webcast_interactive/152829
For more information about the work of the Committee, along with published reports visit www.buckscc.gov.uk/scrutiny