Friday, 17 July 2020

The lost boys

I've got an article in the Spectator this week about working class white males and why they are falling behind in school.

...nearly half the children eligible for free school meals in inner London go on to higher education, but in the country outside London as a whole it is just 26 per cent.

Black African British children outperform white children, whereas black Caribbean children tend to do worse. Poor Chinese girls (that is to say, those who qualify for free school meals) do better than rich white children. But, interestingly, the ethnic group least likely to get into university are whites. With the sole exception of Gypsy/Roma, every ethnic group attends university at a higher rate than the white British and, of the white British who do attend, most are middle class and 57 per cent are female.  The least likely group to go on to higher education are poor white boys. Just 13 per cent of them go on to higher education, less than any black or Asian group.

This is a trend that can also be seen in the GCSE data; only 17 per cent of white British pupils eligible for free school meals achieve a strong pass in English and maths. Students categorised as Bangladeshi, Black African and Indian are more than twice as likely to do so. In 2007, the state sector saw 23 per cent of black students go on to higher education; this was true for 22 per cent of whites. So about the same. But at the last count, in 2018, the gap had widened to 11 points (41 per cent for black students, 30 per cent for whites). The children of the white working class are falling away from their peers, in danger of becoming lost. 

Have a read. I'm also one the Spectator podcast with former UCAS head Mary Curnock Cook talking about the same issue.

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