Top universities really are biased in favour of private school pupils

Extract from the Independent Article: “Pupils from state schools and ethnic minority groups need higher A-level results than those from private schools to get into Britain’s top universities, says a study out today.”

In my opinion, this is not news nor is it current affairs. This has been happening for years and from personal experience I was one of the few in my course at LSE that went to a state school.

Dr Wendy Piatt makes a valid point in regards to A Level choices individual students make. However, I hope Wendy is not insinuating that it is the fault of that individual student.
From personal experience and I would like to hear from others too, I was not told that my GCSE subject options will affect which A Levels I can choose which in turn affects what University and degree and I can apply for also.
When there are below standard career guidance in state schools how can the blame fall on the child?
When schools are forced to focus on helping their students pass non-creative, production line exams tests, students are not prepared or as prepared for post-16 world let alone the real world.
Yes, it is a serious problem that Universities especially the really good ones are not accepting students from state schools and ethnic minorities. It is also a serious problem that the gap between ethnic minority students and white students accepted to good Universities is still substantially wide!

How can it be addressed: (In my opinion)

1- Career guidance coaches in all state schools with focus primarily on schools that are below average on school league tables.
These coaches are not only to work with the students but parents and teachers. Collaboration is key and necessary here in order to be effective and efficient. Involving parents means a continuation of a ‘what’s next ethos’ and encourages more critical thinking at home. Involving teachers, can bring academic learning to life, how learning quotes from Romeo & Juliet, or how to create pretty colours from different metals & acid is relevant to everyday life and the future.

2- Curriculum needs to be rebuilt on a foundation that education is for life and not for exams. University is just one option of many but all students should be given the opportunity to go to a great University and be equipped to be able to do well also.

One Comment on “Top universities really are biased in favour of private school pupils

  1. What’s true in the UK is true in the USA too. For example you might want to examine Linda McNeil’s work on the contradictions of control, or the “Contradictions of School Reform:Educational Costs of Standardized Testing.” The tier system in the USA isn’t just private v. public but within the public system too.

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