In November 2016 our students, teachers, parents, and everyone else, finally had an answer to the question which had dominated the 2016 election and overshadowed the States for many years.
After a lengthy and heated debate, the States had finally decided to reconfirm the decision made by the previous Assembly in March 2016, to abandon selection at 11 and move to a 3-school model of secondary education.
Despite attempts to undermine it, the education committee, very ably led by Deputy Paul Le Pelley, proceeded to deliver exactly what both the previous and current Assembly had decided. A 3-school secondary education model.
The full 3-school proposal was published in November 2017, but not before a group of Deputies came forward with an alternative 2-school proposal.
The question is; where did the 2-school model come from? It did not appear in the manifestos of any of the Deputies elected in 2016, just over a year before.
It was not suggested through an amendment during the ‘selection at 11 debate’ while reconfirming the 3-school just eight months earlier.
Nor was the 2-school model championed by a group of education professionals or teaching unions.
The ‘Gang of Four’ Deputies introduced the 2-school model. Deputies Matt Fallaize, Mark Dorey, Rhian Tooley and Richard Graham, supported by some of our most senior politicians. With little or no consultation with teachers, parents, students, support staff or the general public.
In this short article, it is not possible to detail all the overbearing and coercive behaviour employed, or the abuses of position and influence utilised to undermine the 3-school plan and replace it with the 2-school model.
Nor is it possible to quantify the tens of millions of pounds which these political games will ultimately cost taxpayers, or to detail the stress and anxiety caused to our students, parents, teachers and support staff.
It is possible to outline the stark choice facing the electorate. If people want a 3-school model, how can they vote for those candidates who undermine the 3-school plan and consistently supported the 2-school model?
Even supporters of the 2-school model need to question the conviction and integrity of Deputies who voted to proceed immediately with the implementation of the 2-school model just six months ago.
In May, seventeen Deputies voted NOT to PAUSE AND REVIEW and to proceed with immediate implementation of the 2-school model. Fourteen of those Deputies are
standing for re-election.
Of these fourteen, only one has acknowledged support for the 2-school model in their election manifesto.
The others are hiding behind the PAUSE AND REVIEW, which they voted against, to avoid declaring their support for the hugely unpopular 2-school model.
They are trying to hide their support until after the election. Or even more cynically; waiting for the review to help justify uturning AGAIN to support a more popular
Please do not vote for the Deputies who consistently SUPPORTED the 2-school model unless you want the 2-school model, or something very similar to it.