Study highlights wealth gap in university access – BBC News

Image caption Young people from richer locations are more likely to get degrees, says the research

Young people in some of the wealthiest parts of England are 18 times very likely to go to university than those in the weakest, suggests new analysis.

The charity Teach Initial compared official child poverty numbers with university participation rates.

In parts of Derbyshire, only one in 20 young people advanced to university in 2015, compared to more than 80% in parts of Buckinghamshire, it says.

Educational institutions Minister Jo Johnson said the particular figures were improving.

“Recent UCAS data implies that young people from disadvantaged backgrounds may go to university than ever before, but all of us agree there is more to do, inch said Mr Johnson.

The study drew on numbers from the Higher Education Funding Council intended for England to highlight the area associated with Shirebrook in North West Derbyshire, where just 4. 8% associated with young people started university in 2015.

By contrast, the location with the highest university entrants had been Gerrards Cross North in Buckinghamshire, at 87. 2%.

On average, the researchers discovered that in the most deprived 10% of postcodes about 20% associated with young people went to university in 2015, compared with about half of those in the least starving 10%.

Within the report, Teach First says the younger generation from the poorest backgrounds are continuously held back by social flexibility hurdles their wealthier peers never face.

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Picture caption Primary children must be encouraged to aim for university, state the authors

Figures from the Office associated with Fair Access to Higher Education (OFFA) display that universities in England spent 725m in 2015-16 on measures to assist more disadvantaged students get into college – but the report asks when the money could be spent more effectively.

It suggests that the proportion should be targeted on increasing participation in “hard to reach” communities, with schemes to motivate primary-aged children to aim from degrees.

Additionally, it suggests that the government could encourage instructors to take jobs in schools within low-achieving areas by forgiving the proportion of their student loans.

Teach First chief executive Brett Wigdortz said that “for those that select that path, [university] gives them a huge range of interpersonal, cultural and economic benefits plus, for the time being it’s still the entrance for most high-status professions.

“However, today there are still way too few disadvantaged pupils getting to university or college and completing their degree. inch

Prof L’ensemble des Ebdon, Director of OFFA stated: “The grades young people get at college have a huge impact on their ability to accessibility higher education. So it is a real cause designed for concern that the gap in achievement between pupils from different skills can be seen from such a young age. inch

Mr Johnson stated the government’s higher education reforms targeted to ensure that universities “look beyond simply access – and focus on achievement, retention rates and readiness for your world of work.

“This includes a new responsibility requiring universities to publish data separated by background, to shine a mild on where more must be done in order to tackle inequality.

“The Teaching Excellence Framework will even explicitly look at how they are attaining positive outcomes for disadvantaged college students. ”

The study has been written jointly with Credit Suisse’s EMEA education foundation.

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