‘A long way from a level playing field’

The Social Mobility Commission has uncovered ‘stark differences’ between how children from different ethnic backgrounds progress into work. Black and Asian Muslim children are less likely to get professional jobs – despite doing better in school – whereas white boys from disadvantaged backgrounds are the least likely to go to university.

Chair of the Commission, Alan Milburn, described the British ‘social mobility promise’ as broken.

The study, carried out by education think-tanks LKMco and Education Datalab, looked at how students progress through schooling, if they go on to sixth form and university, and how their achievements translate into jobs.

The full press release can be found here on the GOV.UK website. Key recommendations include:

  • schools should seek to involve and work with parents and should particularly target those from the groups that are least likely to engage in their children’s education, such as poor white British and Gypsy, Roma and Traveller (GRT) groups
  • schools should avoid setting pupils by ability, particularly at primary level, and government should discourage schools from doing so
  • schools, universities and employers should provide targeted support to ensure Muslim women are able to achieve their career ambitions and progress in the workplace
  • universities should implement widening participation initiatives that are tailored to the issues faced by poor white British students and address worrying drop-out and low achievement rates amongst black students

At Bridge Builders, we believe that all students should have the opportunity to achieve their full potential in school and in the future. We work with schools and organisations to provide mentoring for students from disadvantaged backgrounds, of all ethnicities, to give them a fairer chance at success in life, whatever form that might take.

Please contact us today to see how we can help you help your students.

Helen Robinson