By SimplyLogical
2 years ago

All Goldfish Swim, therefore Everything That Swims Is A Goldfish

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I have written before about flawed logic and it seems that currently, examples of it are rife. This was at one time the preserve of saloon bars up and down the UK, but thanks to the internet is now endemic the world over. A person makes a flawed assumption, thousands take it as a concrete fact, then re-tweet, post or email this flawed information worldwide within seconds. The media, not known for scrupulous fact checking, then picks up the story and in the space of a few hours the whole world believes it to be true. Wikipedia is another fine example of how false information can easily be circulated. Try editing some scientific fact or another and see who notices. Probably nobody, unless the page is maintained by an enthusiast on a regular basis.

The latest example of false information being spread in the UK is that surrounding the reintroduction of Grammar Schools. The argument against them seems to centre around the fact that they are seen as elitist, that they only exist in better off areas and that disadvantaged children don't attend them. It is the statement that disadvantaged children do not attend them that I take most exception to. The statement implies that the poor are somehow being filtered out of the application process and places given only to the better off. There are undoubtedly thousands of bright children currently in the UK who would benefit from a grammar education. Instead, they are stuck in "comprehensive" schools where, dragged down by the lazy and disruptive in classes so packed there isn't room to swing a crayon, they emerge clueless and foundering in a modern, fast paced society.

Data from the Education Data Lab shows that the disadvantaged (those taking free school meals) do relatively well at passing the Eleven Plus exam, compared to those who do not take free school meals. It is only when you split the groups by ethnicity that you see any real gap in attainment, and this gap appears in the White British group, and not in ethnic minorities. This would indicate that there is some other reason why the disadvantaged of all backgrounds are not being admitted to grammar schools.

I think I may have found the answer. Successive Governments have introduced legislation to try and abolish selective schools completely. The last bit of meddling was by David Blunkett, when as Education Minister, he called for all schools to become comprehensive. Most Labour run authorities had already converted or closed their grammar schools and become a fully comprehensive authority. Children growing up in those areas were unable to take the Eleven Plus examination, therefore could not gain entry to a grammar school even if they were bright enough (which plenty were), and were prepared to travel into a neighbouring area to attend. Therefore the poorest children, living in left wing dominated areas of the country, were unable to attend.

You will have realised therefore, that the reason disadvantaged children are not attending grammar schools is because there isn't one nearby most of the time and they aren't qualified to apply even if there is.

Misinformation and flawed logic at its finest.

2 years
ze2000 I'm not sure if I'm getting this right. You mean the Government is interested in offering poor education to the british children?
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SimplyLogical @ze2000 Almost. The left wing parties have the opinion that everyone should be given the same opportunities. The problem is that this cannot be a classical, or academic education because not everyone has the ability to take the academic approach. What they do instead is water down the education system (some would say dumbing down) so that everyone is in a lesser system. They would argue that the comprehensive system is as good as the grammar. If that were truly the case, they would not want to abolish grammar schools.
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ze2000 From the moment all children have to stick to the same education programme the system is flawed. A way of controlling the population? Well, a lot of people talk about conspiracy so...
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NyishaHv Isn't it circular reasoning to suggest something 'is' something because of its predicate. For instance a fish isn't the only thing that swims in an ocean. Also by stating something doesn't necessarily make something factual, it could be deemed a synthetic statement.
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NyishaHv Yeah sadly, this is the case a lot of people derive truth from statements that are not tactual and just matters of opinion. Great article by the way.
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