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Mind the education gap

Despite continued political promises to close the educational attainment gap, it remains wide open – rich and poor children do not perform equally at school. Children receiving free school meals are far less likely to achieve five A*- C grades than their better off classmates.

When you compare the results of the poorest children with those in private schools you find that the results are even more depressing. The latest breakdown shows that 175 boys from Eton College scored three As at A Level, compared to just 75 of the poorest boys across the entire country.

However it’s not all doom and gloom for children from poorer backgrounds; evidence suggests that investment targeted on raising educational standards of children on free schools meals does work. In London where money has been invested in initiatives such as personal tuition for children on free school meals, they are now more likely to get five good passes at GCSE than their counterparts in other regions.

It might sound like a cliché that children are our future, but the children of today are tomorrow’s inventor, scientist or entrepreneur. Unless children from all backgrounds are given the opportunity to realise their potential through education, it will not just be poorer children who lose out, but society as a whole.

Here’s how you can help

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