Councillor says Maidenhead grammar would do 'absolutely nothing' to boost school choice in Windsor

Councillor says Maidenhead grammar would do 'absolutely nothing' to boost school choice in Windsor

Simon Meechan

Building a satellite grammar school in Maidenhead would do 'absolutely nothing' to help education choice in Windsor, according to an opposition councillor.

Cllr Lynne Jones (Old Windsor Residents Association, Old Windsor) was speaking at a children's overview and services scrutiny panel on Tuesday (October 20).

The panel was discussing a report which recommended pledging £200,000 to further explore opening a satellite campus in Maidenhead of Marlow's Sir William Borlase's Grammar School.

Education secretary Nicky Morgan approved a similar scheme in Kent on Thursday, October 15 - a decision the council was waiting for before committing any more resources to a grammar school plan.

The borough is backing the scheme to give 'choice' to parents over what type of school their child attends.

But Cllr Jones thinks Windsor suffers more than Maidenhead, in that it only has The Windsor Boys' School and Windsor Girls' School as upper schools, compared to Maidenhead's four state secondary schools.

Cllr Jones added: "Maidenhead has choice already and Windsor has no choice.

"Being a council that is supposed to be for parental choice, there's absolutely nothing being done about giving choice to Windsor."

The borough's managing director, Alison Alexander, replied that Sir William Borlase's is the only school that registered an interest in expanding into the Royal Borough, and it only wanted to move into Maidenhead, due to its proximity to Marlow.

She added that the borough could open a dialogue with other grammar schools if they want to put their names in the hat for expansion.

Royal Borough education officer David Scott added: "If any existing grammar approaches us then we will consider that on its merits."

The meeting was held at Maidenhead Town Hall.

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