Monday, 1 October 2012

Ed Miliband Going to a Comprehensive is Half a Story

I am confused about what Ed Miliband is trying to say. He speaks fondly and proudly of going to a comprehensive school. His objective is clear enough. He is trying to differentiate himself from the millionaire Cabinet members who mostly went to private school. Ed's story is one of a simple start in life at a level playing field school without the leverage of privilege.

That is not totally true though. His father, Ralph Miliband, was a well known academic in Marxist theory. Ed  must have grown up being exposed to political discussions and debates all the time. I would say Ed must have had a brilliant advantage in politics from an early age.

I go to a private school but there is no way I would have become interested in politics if my mother had not introduced me to it. This part of my life does not come from school. My point is that Ed's opportunities did not come solely from going to a comprehensive school and it is wrong of him to say so. It presents a misleading picture. There are thousands of children who attend Comprehensives who will not have the life opportunities that he did. By presenting our state school system as a great starter covers the problems that exist such as underfunding and poor results. This is why children who go to private schools stand a better chance in life. It shouldn't be the case but it is.

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