The elitism of Simon Jenkins

Filling the pail

Simon Jenkins has had a go at writing about English education again. This time, instead of musing on the experiences of his dinner party companions, he has decided to lament the whole accursed system.

To demonstrate just how in touch he is with the issues, he starts by recalling a boy at school who he used to tease as the ‘village idiot’ but who he would defend ‘if anyone bullied him’. This is meant to draw a distinction between the inclusive, bucolic past and a present when children with special educational needs are more likely to be excluded from school than those without such a label.

When you realise that challenging behaviour is one key reason for a special educational needs diagnosis being issued in the first place, higher rates of exclusion are no surprise. As blogger Old Andrew has suggested, given the way the system works, it’s…

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