Grammar Schools: schools that work for everyone?

Hosted by the Centre for Economic Performance at LSE and the Times Educational Supplement with the Fair Education Alliance and Comprehensive Future

Sheikh Zayed Theatre, New Academic Building,


Dr Mary Bousted

Dr Mary Bousted

Peter Hitchens

Peter Hitchens

Melissa Benn

Mark Morrin

Mark Morrin

Harriet Sergeant

Harriet Sergeant


Ed Dorrell

Ed Dorrell

In response to the Government's May 2017 Schools White Paper, the Centre for Economic Performance (CEP) and Times Educational Supplement (TES) host "The Big General Election Grammar Schools Debate" on whether there is a place for grammar schools in the UK education system. Will they work for everyone, not just the privileged few?

After an introduction from Professor Sandra McNally, Director of the Education and Skills Programme at CEP, the high profile panel will argue whether or not there is a way back for grammar schools in the UK, debating the motion "This house believes that a new government should open more grammar schools."

Melissa Benn (@Melissa_Benn) is a writer, journalist and campaigner.  She was educated at Holland Park comprehensive and the London School of Economics where she graduated with a First in history.  Before becoming a full time writer, she worked for the National Council for Civil Liberties, the Open University, Women in Prison and the London magazine City Limits.

Mary Bousted (@MaryBoustedATL) is general secretary of ATL (Association of Teachers and Lecturers). Mary represents the interests of her members to the government, and to a wide variety of other stakeholders. Mary sits on the executive committee of the Trades Union Congress (TUC) and is a member of the ACAS board. Mary previously worked in higher education at York University, Edge Hill University and at Kingston University where she was Head of the School of Education. Prior to this Mary was a Head of English, and English teacher in comprehensive schools in North London.

Peter Hitchens (@ClarkeMicah) is a journalist, author and broadcaster. Hitchens writes for The Mail on Sunday and is a former foreign correspondent in Moscow and Washington. He works as a foreign reporter and in 2010 was awarded the Orwell Prize for journalism.

Lewis Iwu (@lewisiwu) read politics, philosophy and economics at Oxford University, where he was elected President of the students’ union. Lewis is an active debating coach, having coached the national teams of Hong Kong in 2006, the United Arab Emirates in 2010 and 2011, and the ESU England schools debating team in 2012. He is a former World Universities Debating Champion. He is currently the Director of the Fair Education Alliance. 

Mark Morrin is ResPublica’s Localism Lead. He is focusing on their new projects and workstreams, working in partnership with city-regions, to radicalise the localism agenda and realise a new vision for local economic growth and public sector reform. Mark has contributed widely to research and policy developments in the UK with particular expertise in the fields of economic development, employment and skills. He has over 15 years of experience working with the public, private and voluntary sector.

Harriet Sergeant (@HarrietSergeant) is a journalist, author and Research Fellow of the Centre For Policy Studies. She is the author of books: Between the Lines: Conversations in South Africa, Shanghai: Collision Point of Cultures 1918-1939, Japan, and Among the Hoods: My Years with a Teenage Gang. She has also written six reports for the Centre For Policy Studies on topics including immigration, management in the NHS, the police and the care system.

Ed Dorrell (@Ed_Dorrell ) is head of content at the Times Educational Supplement.

The CEP (@CEP_LSE) is an interdisciplinary research centre at the LSE Research Laboratory. It was established by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) in 1990 and is now one of the leading economic research groups in Europe.

TES (@tes) is a weekly UK publication aimed primarily at school teachers in the UK. As well as news and views on education, their website also features teaching jobs, forums, and classroom resources that are uploaded by teachers.

The Fair Education Alliance (@_TheFEA) is a coalition of 86 of the UK’s leading organisations from business, education, and the third sector. Its mission is to use its collective voice and influence to close the educational attainment gap between the most disadvantaged children and their wealthier peers.

Comprehensive Future (@comp_future) is a campaign group dedicated to campaigning against school admission tests and selective education. They believe children are more likely to succeed when they are taught together in high quality all-ability schools.

Twitter Hashtag for this event: #LSEgrammarschools

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This event has been certified for CPD purposes by the CPD Certification Service. Self-Assessment Record forms will be made available for delegates wishing to record further learning and knowledge enhancement for Continuing Personal and Professional Development (CPD) purposes. For delegates who wish to obtain a CPD Certificate of Attendance, it is the responsibility of delegates to register their details with a LSE steward at the end of the event and as of 1 September 2014 a certificate will be sent within 28 days of the date of the event attended by the CPD Certification Service.  If a delegate fails to register their details at the event, it will not prove possible to issue a certificate. (For queries relating to CPD Certificates of attendance after a request please phone 0208 840 4383 or email

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