Thursday, June 15, 2006

Social mobility in decline

The Independent is a strange newspaper. Its front pages are strident and opinionated: its leaders are bland and rather timid.

Today's front page is more informative than usual. It deals with declining social mobility in Britain and a is worth quoting at some length:

The research, published by the Sutton Trust education charity, shows that of the leading 100 media opinion-formers, 54 per cent came from private schools, compared with 49 per cent 20 years ago. Thirty-three per cent of the remainder came from selective grammar schools and only 14 per cent were from comprehensive schools, which cater for 90 per cent of all pupils.

The report on the legal profession shows that almost 70 per cent of barristers from leading chambers were educated at private schools. And in the House of Commons, 42 per cent of those holding government office or shadowing ministers are former pupils of private schools. Just 7 per cent of all pupils are educated in the private sector.

I shall offer some comment on these figures another day, but I thought it was worth posting them before they disappeared behind the Indy's firewall.

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