England’s Poor Pupils Experience Geographic Exclusion

The alarming findings of a recent study have revealed that England’s poorer pupils face severe ‘geographic exclusion’ from top state schools. The study, conducted by the Education Policy Institute (EPI), examined secondary school attainment figures across the country and found stark differences between those in deprived areas and more affluent regions.

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The research indicated regular patterns of low educational attainment among disadvantaged students due to their geographical location. Students living in underprivileged communities were less likely to attend a high-performing school than those living in wealthier areas – meaning they are missing out on opportunities to get the best education possible.

This is exacerbated by the fact that there is an overall lack of good-quality schools in poorer parts of the country. The study suggested that more needs to be done to ensure all pupils have access to good educational opportunities, regardless of their background or geographical location.

The EPI has called for a review of England’s school admissions system to tackle this issue head-on and ensure disadvantaged students are not excluded from the best state schools. This would involve measures such as providing sufficient funding for capital investment and staffing at underperforming schools and introducing fairer admissions criteria that do not discriminate against those from poorer backgrounds.

The study’s findings highlight how much work is needed to bridge the growing gap between pupils from wealthy and deprived backgrounds when accessing quality education. The current system has failed to adequately meet the needs of England’s poorer pupils, and urgent action must be taken to ensure all students are given an equal chance at achieving success.

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