Even Good Schools Aren’t Closing The Gap Between Rich And Poor Students

Jan 30, 2018 by

Nick Morrison –

Faith in the power of schools to overcome disadvantage has been shaken by the news that even good schools aren’t closing the gap between rich and poor students.

The difference in attainment by students from underprivileged backgrounds compared with their more affluent peers has been one of the most visible — and most persistent — features in education over at least the past 40 years.

Children from disadvantaged backgrounds are already an average of 4.3 months behind their peers at the age of five; by 11 that gap has increased to 9.5 months and by the time they leave high school at 18 it has grown to 19.3 months.

Although the gap has narrowed in recent years, the rate of progress means it will be decades before it is eliminated entirely.

Improving the quality of schools across the board has been seen as the best way of reducing the gap, in the belief that while some students will always do well, those from disadvantaged backgrounds are more dependant on the standard of teaching to succeed.

But this faith appears to be misplaced, as new analysis suggests that the quality of school makes little difference to the size of the gap.

Source: Even Good Schools Aren’t Closing The Gap Between Rich And Poor Students

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