The announcement of Theresa May’s plans for new grammar schools has revived a decades-old debate about selective schooling in the British educational system, and the last few months have seen the issue rise to the top of the parliamentary agenda. The proposal is facing resistance from both Labour MPs and Conservative backbenchers, and has also drawn criticism from teachers and members of the educational establishment.
Plans to challenge the construction of a new grammar school in Kent have been dropped recently, and it seems increasingly probable that the Weald of Kent Grammar School’s Sevenoaks expansion will open as planned in September of 2017. While there is still a prohibition on creating completely new grammar schools, existing grammar schools like Weald of Kent are permitted to develop “annex” schools under the free schools Programme. If development goes through it will be the first new grammar school opened in 50 years.