Regional Divide Widens

Improvement-In-London-School-ResultsQuestion: Are the school results in London improving?

Answer: Yes! – The improvement of school results in London has widened the regional divide

England is more likely to be able to determine success or failure at school than in previous generations by looking at where children grow up in England.

The comparisons between the generations, based on the tests taken in primary school and exams such as O-levels and GCSEs, indicate that the geography has become much more significant in pupil’s success.

For pupils born in the 70’s, the study says that location was always much less of an influence with a much stronger link to factors like social background.

The rise of London schools is a key part in this, some of the poorest areas of the country are now achieving relatively high results.

In the 80’s, areas such as south-east and east of England had better results than London but now, most recent results show that London is exceeding the rest of the country.

Due to the majority of good school results coming from the south of England, Ofsted chief Sir Michael Wilshaw has warned of a “North-South divide” in schools.

Here are a few other interesting facts:

  • The achievement gap between the richest and the poorest pupils remains “persistently large”
  • The gender gap has grown wider, with girls being even more likely to achieve higher results
  • The levels of achievement of ethnic minority pupils has made a substantial shift to old data

The GCSE results for 2013-14 show a much more complex picture in regards to ethnic background.

The black and Asian categories, broken down in more precise ethnic groups, indicated that Indian pupils’ results were above average, while Pakistani pupils were below average. Black African pupils were above average and black Caribbean were below.

White pupils were below average, with the weakest results coming from poor, white boys.

The director of the Social Market Foundation has said “While parental income remains very important, where you live has become a much more important factor. Our new research also shows that the story around ethnic origin and education has become much more complex.”

We would love to hear what you have to say about the new data. Let us know in the comments section below.

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