17. února, 2019 - svátek má Miloslava

The Guardian view on private schools: motors of unfairness | Editorial

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The Guardian

The Guardian |

Social mobility has stalled and inequalities between schools play an important part. It’s time to even things upPrivate schools educate around 6% of the UK’s school population, or around 625,000 children in 2,600 schools. Since they have their own inspectors and select their own intakes, comparisons with state schools are not straightforward. But in outcomes such as exam results, prowess in arts and sport, and rates of admission to universities and the professions, the success of fee-paying schools is unquestionable: 42% of Oxbridge places go to private pupils, who also make up 32% of all MPs, 51% of leading journalists, 74% of judges and a third of 2016 Team GB Olympic medallists. It’s possible to celebrate the achievements of individuals such as Bafta winner Olivia Colman yet recognise that this narrow cohort’s collective winnings are a problem.The UK is chronically socially immobile. More than in most comparable countries, a person’s life chances are determined by the status of their parents. Positions of power and influence are dominated by those with inherited wealth. This is not only unjust, but also a waste of human resources, which holds back progress of all kinds. And while private schools are by no means the main reason for the class system’s staying power, they are an important one. It is not just about the impact of small class sizes and lavish facilities on exam results, but also the creation and maintenance of powerful social networks and inculcation of mores. Progressives in the education debate are often accused of social engineering, but private schools are inequality-generating machines, as the title of a new book about them – Engines of Privilege – points out. Continue reading...

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