Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Oops Done It Again…

My posting about the head of Norwich ‘independent’ school (he spoke out in support of the Heartsease academy) obviously upset someone from the Worshipful Company of Dyers. ‘Anonymous’ wrote-

Some facts about Norwich School and the Dyers: Norwich School's association with the Worshipful Company of Dyers began in the mid 20th Century and is nothing to do with the School's foundation. The Dyers assist one independent school (Norwich) and several state schools in London. The Dyers provide generous funds to supplement Norwich School's bursary provision for low income families. There are no known occurrences of Dyers' offspring ever receiving financial help.

The School allocates approx. £500,000 to assist pupils who would not otherwise be able to attend. Many of those pupils live in difficult circumstances with minimal family income.Independent schools are more effective agents of social mobility than most state schools - even the grammars. Were you aware, for example, that approaching 50% of 'working class' Oxbridge undergraduates came from independents via bursary schemes?

Mr Read,Your comments are based on prejudice and conjecture it appears. You have concocted a story about the Dyers' Co. and Norwich School that is totally untrue and presented it as fact.

You seem determined to knock independent schools - no matter what good they do. But at the very least - please get your facts right and stop promoting these misleading untruths.

Sorry about getting the foundation of Norwich School wrong, but quite how the Dyers got involved with the school in the mid 20th century is puzzling, surely there were more deserving cases? Couldn’t they have found some impoverished dyers?

As for the ‘low income families’ they have assisted, why don’t ‘independent’ schools publish how many children are eligible for Free School Meals, state schools have to, it isn’t the only measure of poverty but is fairly reliable.

‘Independent’ schools as ‘agents of social mobility’? That really is a new one on me. I’ll make this challenge to ‘Anonymous’ why don’t Norwich School publish the details of parental income? Should make interesting reading.


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