Grammar schools send more ethnic minority students to Cambridge than all comprehensives combined

The Telegraph is reporting that grammar schools are sending more black and minority ethnic (BME) students to Cambridge University than all the other state schools in the country combined, a new analysis reveals.

Children from the most disadvantaged 20 per cent of households are more than twice as likely to get a place at Oxford or Cambridge if they live in an area with grammar schools, according to the report.

The paper, published by the Higher Education Policy Institute (Hepi), examines  the impact of selective schooling on state educated pupils’ progression to top universities. 

Iain Mansfield, a former senior civil servant who wrote the report, said the figures are a “shocking indictment” on the country’s 1,849 comprehensive schools. 

The report analysed the background of Cambridge students who took up places at the university in the past three years and found that grammars sent 486 students to Cambridge  over the three years, compared to 362 from comprehensives.

“Astonishingly, 163 grammar schools sent over 30 per cent more BME entrants to Cambridge  than the nearly 2,000 non-selective schools combined,” it says.

A report published last year by the campaign group Comprehensive Future claimed that just 4.5 per cent of grammar school places went to FSM children.

But the Hepi paper says that using the FSM measure obscures large differences within the remaining 85 per cent of the population. In fact, Mr Mansfield argues that grammar schools have a “socially diverse range of pupils”, with 45 per cent coming from families with income levels below the median income for families with children”.

“My report shows that, for many disadvantaged children, selective education makes a vital contribution to social mobility.”

Read the full article Grammar schools send more ethnic minority students to Cambridge than all comprehensives

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  1. Anonymous

    Again the argument for social diversity within grammar schools misses the point. 55% of families come from households with above median incomes.
    Grammar schools’ admissions policies could address this and the shockingly low numbers of disadvantaged directly pupils they admit. Most grammar schools choose not to.
    Grammar schools remain, and choose to remain, a rationed resource available to socially advantaged families.

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