The UK has been failing white working-class pupils

2022-04-05
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The UK has been failing white working-class pupils for years - Today News Post Today News || UK News

Here’s a heretical thought. What if some of our worries about schoolchildren having fallen behind during Covid-19 are misplaced: because some of what they missed wasn’t much use to them anyway??

I don’t mean to sound flippant. I know that kids at private schools and ones with devoted parents are likely to have had an advantage during the grim months of home-schooling. Some schools’ online provision was woeful and some children in overcrowded homes don’t even have a quiet corner in which to study. But it’s not just during the pandemic that we neglected some of those who struggle most. After years of reading reports about the poor educational performance of working-class children, I have begun to wonder whether part of the problem is that they and their families are rejecting a model which doesn’t work for them.

The latest report, from parliament’s education select committee, confirms that almost 1m white working-class children, especially boys, are seriously struggling. They now fare worse in education than every other minority group except Gypsy/Roma and Irish Travellers. If you look at children on free school meals, a measure of deprivation, only 18 per cent of white pupils gain a grade 5 in GCSE Maths and English, compared with 23 per cent of all pupils on free school meals. Only 16 per cent go to university compared to 32 per cent of black Caribbean pupils, 59 per cent of black African pupils and 73 per cent of Chinese pupils.?This suggests that poverty is not the whole story, because impoverished whites are now outperformed by equally deprived minority groups.

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Where you live matters. London, whose inner city was a sink hole for schooling in the 1990s, is now a powerhouse of achievement, with children there doing better than elsewhere in the countryThe provinces are reporting 360,819 new vaccinations administered for a total of 11,158,636 doses given. Nationwide. OverallThere are 1,234,180 confirmed cases in Canada (83,744 active, ethnic minority groups are more concentrated in cities, where per pupil school funding has been higher and where poverty often lives close to wealth, perhaps reinforcing aspiration.

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