Government pledges to tackle ethnic inequalities in schools

10th October 2017 at 13:03
Black Caribbean pupils are disproportionately likely to be excluded from school, new government report shows

Pupils’ ethnicity can determine how likely they are to be excluded from school and what their test scores are likely to be, a new government report says.

These ethnic disparities have been highlighted as the prime minister challenged society to tackle the differences in how people from different backgrounds are treated in schools and in employment.

The new Ethnicity Facts and Figures website, launched at 12.30pm today, highlights the ways in which children’s ethnicity determines their success in a range of areas, including education.

For example, Black Caribbean pupils are excluded from school three times as often as White British pupils, the figures show.

Meanwhile, pupils from Chinese and Asian backgrounds are significantly more likely to perform well at primary and secondary school.

At key stage 2, 71 per cent of Chinese primary pupils met the expected standard for reading, writing and maths in 2016, compared with 54 per cent of White British pupils. Only 13 per cent of White Gypsy and Roma pupils reached the same level.

'A battle against ethnic injustice'

Theresa May has said that the new website will become an “essential resource in the battle to defeat ethnic injustice” in all areas of society.

She said: “What I hope this audit will bring is a change in attitude, so that everyone is treated equally, no matter what their background, and this is never a barrier to getting on in life.

“By bringing this information together in one place for the first time, it will shine a light on the issues we are facing. We must now work together as a society to find solutions.”

The Department for Education has said that it will launch an external review, with the intention of improving its practice in exclusions. This will focus, in particular, on the experiences of those ethnic groups who are disproportionately likely to be excluded.

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