The session started with a planted question, about the size of a pine forest in Norway, Tim Peake would have put a picture of it on Twitter.
Back down on Earth Marcus Fysh, Con, asked about the valuable knowledge in technical skills and engineering which should be offered to some kids, “taking their talents as far as they can go.” What he meant was “give the div kids a spanner and leave the posh ones to go to the grammar school.”
May was straight in with her answer, you can tell she went to a grammar school, and said: “some children need to see the value in technical skills, to take them as far as their talents can go.” Why that phrase again? I was already starting to sense something troubling in my waters.
Corbyn wasn’t having any of it though, he listed the former PM, former education sec and various other educational bodies who oppose grammar schools. He asked May if she could give the names of any educational specialists who back her grammar school programme.
And answer came there none, but not to worry, May has her new safe word (quick admission I would have carried on whatever sordid act I was doing, if Cameron screamed out “Long Term Economic Plan” at me) we need to take these children…“as far as their talents can take them.”
This wasn’t a good enough response for Jezza, and this was easily his best performance at PMQs. He pointed out she failed to mention any experts, and why couldn’t we just fund all schools properly? Grammar schools clearly didn’t help the poor, as there is such a low number of kids on free school meals at existing grammar schools.
May told Corbyn to stop casting his mind back to the 1950s, which is surely an admission that grammar schools were unfair in the first place. Then off she went again: ”we can provide opportunities to where their talents will take them.”
Corbyn stayed on the attack and said it was clear that those who failed their eleven plus had less opportunities in life. Again May had no response, she repeated…The “ability to take children where their talents will take them.” She was starting to sound like Captain Kirk taking less able kids: “Where no man has gone before,” but I’m sure these kids always went straight down the job centre at 16,
May then “gently reminded” Corbyn that they both went to grammar schools. So in the future we get to be governed by even more people from selective schools.
Surely grammar schooling just creates another strata of society and an educational glass ceiling, before kids even hit puberty.
Then just to ensure that we will all live in a segregated society in the future; May said she wants to increase the number faith schools. So you have to be bright and practising a religion at eleven-years-old from now on.
This atheist of average intelligence it taking his talents as far as they can take them, which is down the pub.
Sycophantic question of the day
It was a statement by May, who praised David Cameron for his constituency work and for the country, but failed to mention a Parliamentary Committee who, only this morning, blamed him for the Libyan crisis and the rise of IS.
Corbyn who reportedly ate jam today, which got him out of a jam. Resistance to grammar schools is the only position which spreads through his party; he would do well to preserve this moment of unity. Yep, it is definitely time for a pint.