Oxford and Cambridge need colleges exclusively for state school pupils | Lorna Finlayson
This post was written by our friends at theguardian.com
Every year, around this time, the admissions process at the elite universities of Oxford and Cambridge gets underway. Every year, concerns are raised about access for students from “non-traditional backgrounds” (only in Oxbridge could being a member of an ethnic minority, being from a working-class background or having attended a state school be described as “non-traditional” – as if this were something quirky, deviant and modern). Hands are wrung and bucks are passed. Every year, dedicated teams of students and staff make valiant attempts to “bust stereotypes”.
But in this case, the stereotypes are (still) not so far from the truth. The awkward fact is that the proportion of students from state school backgrounds at Oxbridge is still nowhere near in line with the proportions in the general population. In May, the Guardian reported that although only 7% of British children attend fee-paying schools, students from private schools make up 39% of Cambridge undergraduates (at Oxford, the figure is 43.2%). And state school admissions to Cambridge dropped by nearly two percentage points this year.Continue reading...
November 26, 2014