Trust highlights access inequalities

A report by the Sutton Trust has found that four schools and one FE college sent more students to Oxford and Cambridge over the period 2007-09 than 2,000 other institutions across the UK.

Westminster School, Eton College, Hills Road Sixth Form College, St Pauls School and St Pauls Girls School accounted for over one in 20 of all Oxbridge admissions during that period: 946 Oxbridge entrants came from one of these five schools. This is compared to 927 entrants who came from schools and colleges with less than one successful Oxbridge candidate a year.

While the Trust noted that the findings appear to be “driven primarily by stark gaps in the A-level results of the schools and colleges”, the study also found that the success of the five main schools was not reflected in institutions with similar academic results.
Sir Peter Lampl, chairman of the Sutton Trust, said: “We know these stark inequalities in university progression rates are driven primarily by the exam results in schools, yet the data we are publishing today also reveals that university chances can vary dramatically for schools with similar average grades.”

The report follows the first ever publication of figures detailing the higher education destinations of sixth form pupils. Lampl went on to outline his hopes for this new initiative: “Our hope is that by making these figures available, the spotlight on schools will widen to encompass the actual destinations of pupils after they have left, alongside their A-level results.”