Britain ‘increasingly divided’ with most influential people five times more likely to have gone to private school

Britain is an “increasingly divided” society where the country’s most influential people are five times more likely to have gone to a fee-paying school than the general population, research suggests. The Independent reports.

The study, from the Sutton Trust and the Social Mobility Commission, reveals that 7 per cent of Brits attended private school, compared with 39 per cent of those in positions of power. 

The cabinet, at the time of analysis in spring 2019, was composed of nearly two in five (39 per cent) independently educated members – up from 36 per cent five years ago.

It found a number of public bodies are still dominated by private school alumni – including senior judges (65 per cent), civil service permanent secretaries (59 per cent – a rise of 4 percentage points) and the Lords (57 per cent – a rise of 8 percentage points).

There has been “isolated pockets of positive change” over the past five years with a slight decline of private school over-representation, but “persistent inequality” remains, it says. 

Sir Peter Lampl, founder and executive chairman of the Sutton Trust, said: “Social mobility, the potential for those to achieve success regardless of their background, remains low. As our report shows, the most influential people across sport, politics, the media, film and TV, are five times as likely to have attended a fee-paying school.”

The report calls for universities to adopt contextual admissions, for companies to pay for lengthy internships and for private schools to open their doors to bright children who cannot afford fees. 

Read the full article Britain ‘increasingly divided’ with most influential people five times more likely to have gone to private school 

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