14/03/2008

The University of Thurrock?

Posted in Education at 9:55 pm by henrysgauntlet

Thurrock is not really natural territory for The Guardian newspaper.  Local people have too firm a grip on the realities of life to be taken in by its promotion of fashionable causes and its subservience to radical posturing.

All the same, there are occasionally items in the paper of local interest.  Its Education Supplement last week contained details of the Borough Council’s hopes of creating a university campus in Grays in the foreseeable future.  This would help to raise the proportion of Thurrock University Graduateyoungsters going into higher education.  The Universities of Essex and of East London, along with other bodies, have been drawn in to help.

No one is against getting more of Thurrock’s young or older people into higher education. But the Borough Council’s priority should be to improve the performance of Thurrock’s secondary schools.  Their results are well below the county and national average.  Little progress is being made despite organisational changes which often amount to little more than new names being given to long-standing projects or institutions.

A very high price has been paid for the abolition of our local grammar schools – Palmer’s Boys and Girls’ schools – simply to appease Labour Party prejudices.  They offered a good standard of education for children from a wide range of backgrounds including those on low incomes.  Other local schools like Torells have perished because the LEA failed to support its governors and parents when it could and should have done.

Let us not make the mistake of creating a University of Thurrock before our schools have improved greatly. They are where our resources, our Council Tax payments and the funds available from the Exchequer should be invested.  Coverage in The Guardian may impress left-wing sympathisers but will not help Thurrock’s young people.

Posted by Ol Grumpy

 

 

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2 Comments »

  1. Alice Horn said,

    What an old ‘grump’ ol grumpy is! Think of all the honorary degrees the University of Thurrock will be able to award. Reflect on the students who will flock in enormous numbers to Grays. Consider the effects on local nightlife and shopping. I can hardly wait. Roll on higher education here.

  2. Lee Redding said,

    Chancellor Hipsey? Vice-Chancellor Everitt? Professors Revell (creative writing)? Development Corporation buildings with or without planning permission? Tilbury or Chadwell Towers (for students)? The South Ockendon laboratories? Fantasy Island? You bet.


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