Middle-class parents are up in arms after it emerges most grammar schools favour poorest pupils

Most grammar schools are favouring the poorest pupils in admissions, sparking complaints from better-off parents.

Schools are giving a higher priority to children from disadvantaged backgrounds who pass the 11-plus test in a bid to boost social mobility.

The trend has resulted in numerous complaints to the Office of the Schools Adjudicator (OSA), the schools admissions watchdog.

Most grammar schools are favouring the poorest pupils in admissions, sparking complaints from better-off parents (stock image)

Most grammar schools are favouring the poorest pupils in admissions, sparking complaints from better-off parents (stock image)

Most grammar schools are favouring the poorest pupils in admissions, sparking complaints from better-off parents (stock image)

Primaries and secondaries can give priority to children who are eligible for the pupil premium – extra cash given to schools to encourage them to educate disadvantaged youngsters. Other premiums used by schools include one for pupils from Armed Forces families.

The OSA report reveals that of the 204 secondary schools who will take into account at least one premium in admissions this year, 125 are grammar schools.

They all use the pupil premium and 23 also use the service premium. There are 163 grammars across the country.

Schools are giving a higher priority to children from disadvantaged backgrounds who pass the 11-plus test in a bid to boost social mobility (stock image)

Schools are giving a higher priority to children from disadvantaged backgrounds who pass the 11-plus test in a bid to boost social mobility (stock image)

Schools are giving a higher priority to children from disadvantaged backgrounds who pass the 11-plus test in a bid to boost social mobility (stock image)

In 2018, 93 grammar schools were using a form of premium. 

But the latest report reveals increasing controversy around the issue, as two-fifths of all new complaints to the OSA are about grammar admissions.

Chief adjudicator Shan Scott said: ‘I recognise that people hold strong views about grammar schools and we receive objections from those who support selective education and from those who oppose it.’

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