Friday, August 28, 2009

These exam results are the first for children educated solely under a Labour government

The exam results we are seeing come out at the moment are historic. The children who are getting their exam results this summer are the first set of children to be solely educated under a Labour government. They would have started school aged four (or shortly afterwards) in 1997 and are now sixteen.

That's the first time that has happened - a full school career under a Labour government.

I know. I am a member of the last generation which was largely (but not entirely) educated under a Labour government. I went to primary school aged five in 1964 when Wilson's government came to power. I left school in 1977 during Callaghan's government. Unfortunately, Heath's pesky Conservative government from 1970 to 1973 ruined everything, but did mean that I enjoyed school during the three-day week including black-outs from 8pm onwards. (So we had early cocoa and I ended up making friends with a boy who happened to have a torch - a useful alliance, that was.) I also ought to mention that I went to a public school for my secondary education, so the link to the Labour government was somewhat indirect perhaps. But then again, I think the Labour government in those days encouraged a generous "Direct grant" system for pupils whose parents could not afford the full fees, from which I benefited (as I also did from a jammy scholarship examination. My benevolent primary school Headmaster helped me out with the first question on longitudes and latitudes - which was nice of him. The lad who I beat into second place never let me forget that.).

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