The top two ranked schools in Bromley; Newstead Wood and St Olave’s, are both grammars. It is difficult to argue that grammar schools get some of the highest results as you can simply see from the league tables that this is true. However, these results can be put to a greater average intelligence than in other schools due to the selection process. The real question is, by going to these schools are you getting a better education?

Although some may say that you do get a better education at grammar schools, others may suggest that the place to truly get the best you can is a private school. This argument is backed up by the results tables as most of the highest scoring schools are- as expected- the grammars and private schools. Without the selection tests, private schools’ remarkable results cannot be attributed to a more intelligent student body. Therefore we can infer that those at a private school are receiving a better education than those at state schools, but how?

People paying for private schools think they are paying for an extra good education, but really, it’s better facilities, extra holidays and perhaps more crucially generally smaller classes. This seems to be the key difference in learning structure from state schools. Having smaller classes gives students more opportunities for one-on-one tuition with teachers to help students’ learning and probably gives a better chance of success in public exams. Some people think this isn’t fair because not everyone has this opportunity.

As well as opposition to private schools some people think grammar schools are unnecessary and unfair. Separating more intelligent students and giving them different schooling creates a moral view of the world that intelligence means superiority. Studies have also shown that less academic students greatly benefit from learning in the same environment as more intelligent students. By taking them out of the environment, it seems that selfishly you are hindering less able students' ability to learn.

Another possible explanation for private schools’ continued success in exam results is that despite the absence of entrance tests the average intelligence of students within private schools is higher than in state schools. With some thought this is plausible; in general, the fees for private schools are not considered affordable for everyone. It is likely that most of the people who can afford to send children to private schools are parents with well-paying jobs; jobs that require intelligence and studies show high IQs are hereditary 80% to 86% of the time. This suggests that most of the children at private schools probably have at least slightly higher than average intelligence.

The problem is, is it fair that those who don’t have the opportunity to go to private school or grammar school but if they did could do better. Do people who go to state school have the potential to get higher grades, had they the opportunities of others? Should all students have the same learning and schooling experience?