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Oh dear! - the Comet has got it completely wrong. It states that the Council has 'passed a motion in support of the controversial Greenwich Judgement'.
No!!! Quite the opposite, in fact.
The Greenwich Judgement is the legal ruling made in 1989 which said that school admissions policies were not allowed to favour children who lived in the borough. This has resulted in today's situation where three quarters of the pupils in the two Tiffin Schools come from outside the Royal Borough.
In Kingston, all the political parties have opposed this. When Ian was Chair of Education in the 90s he attended meetings with ministers to explain the impact of the Judgement and to plea for a change in legislation.
At Council on Wednesday we discussed a very badly worded motion from the Conservatives, which asked a question rather than proposed action. Liberal Democrats put forward an amendment and after some negotiation we found ourselves in the happy position of agreeing the final version with the Conservatives. (Happy, because it shortened the meeting considerably)
Earlier in the year Kingston put forward our proposals for changes under the Sustainable Communities Act, and top of the list was a call to reverse the Greenwich Judgement. So the Council still clearly opposes the ruling.
All that the motion on Wednesday did was to affirm the fact that we should not rely on possible changes to the Greenwich Judgement to sort out the current pressure on school places. The Borough will push ahead with building new school places 'before any modification of the Greenwich Judgement is implemented'. This is sensible since it is impossible to gauge the exact impact of a reversal of the ruling - it would affect Kingston children who attend out-borough schools as well as those who come in to Kingston from other boroughs. And in any case, legislation, were it to happen, would take ages.
What annoys me most about this story in the Comet is that it undermines all the work done under the Sustainable Communities Act. Residents and local organisations gave priority to changing the Judgement and the Council supported them. They wanted to do this because local children cannot get into the two grammar schools, and this is seen as unfair. 'Local schools for local people' has been a rallying cry ever since 1989.
Now this badly written report implies that the Council has overridden the local view. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Oppose the Greenwich Judgement!