KINGS’ School is rated by OfSTED as Outstanding who reported:

  • teaching is of a consistently high quality;

  • teachers are knowledgeable and enthusiastic about their subjects;

  • they know their students very well and continually challenge them to achieve their best;

  • it is by any standards an outstanding school.

  • The honest declaration by the headteacher that cuts are necessary because government funding is totally inadequate is a savage indictment of failed Tory education policies.

The government’s answer to state schools poor funding? A £50m bonus for more grammar schools.

At the headteacher’s NAHT conference, Education Minister Damian Hinds listened carefully to them expressing the gravity and inadequacy of the recently introduced National Funding Formula.

A few days later, he announced new funding for substantial grammar school expansion. Steve Brine fails yet again to grasp the severity of the funding crisis, saying how good he was getting extra for Hampshire and he’ll go on pressing for more money.

More entirely worthless platitudes.

His government will not listen to the profession. They punish excellent state schools by imposing education austerity, removing money.

They starve outstanding schools like Kings’ to fund highly selective grammar schools, funding them with money that is by right the entitlement of the state education service.

The Conservative government favours the rich, forcing schools like Kings’ to scratch around and raise extra funds through fetes, jumble sales and redundancies to sustain high standards in quality education.

Kings’ is a very fine example of comprehensive education excellence. It is oversubscribed and outstanding, a shining example of Hampshire’s quality public education service. As a former student of one of London’s first 12 comprehensive schools, I am very proud of the education I received from some poorly paid but dedicated and inspiring teachers, just like Kings’.

The headteacher and governors are prudent and responsible. Their plight will fall on deaf ears. This government cares little for such outstanding achievements, illustrated by our MPs’ failure to understand their plight and get his government to fund state education based on solid evidence and verified need, not elitist grammar schools.

Peter Rees

Chairman, Winchester Labour Party