Rhetoric on social mobility has not been matched by results

Children from poorer homes are nearly half as likely to attend an outstanding primary school as richer children, research finds.

Only 15% of children from the poorest 30% of families currently go to outstanding primary schools, a study by education charity Teach First suggests. This compares to 27% of children from the richest 30% of families who attend a school rated highly by inspectors.

The research is published as parents across England prepare to hear on Tuesday which primary school their child has been allocated.

The study, by education charity Teach First, analysed official data on income deprivation, known as IDACI, and information from Ofsted inspections. The results suggest the lowest-income families were also twice as likely to have a child at a primary school rated by Ofsted inspectors as “requires improvement” or “inadequate”.

In total, 11% of children in these families currently attend a struggling primary school, compared to just 6% of the richest ones.

Teach First noted that this situation continued into secondary school, with the percentage of the lowest-income children going on to a secondary school rated “as requires improvement” or “inadequate” by Ofsted standing at 24%. This compares to 10% of children from the wealthiest families.

These figures show that social mobility remains a serious issue in our country.

Responding to the findings, Cllr Stephen Morgan, Portsmouth Labour Leader, said:

“This is just another example of the government’s rhetoric on social mobility not being matched by results. 

I want to see every single child get the best possible education in our city and to succeed in life. Current government plans do nothing to ensure all children go to a good primary school.

There is a crisis in recruitment and retention of teachers. Class sizes are going up and up. There is an unprecedented squeeze in school funding. It is clear that this government do not have the answers to the serious issues facing our schools”.