Underachievement in Education by White Working Class Children - Education Committee Contents

5  Conclusions

142.  On average, poor white children tend to perform at a much lower level in education than their more affluent peers, and at a lower level than many similarly economically-deprived children of other ethnicities. Meanwhile, the economy has changed in recent decades; while underachievement in education may once have led to a lifetime of employment in traditional routine manual occupations in factories, the consequence now is more likely to be "NEET" status.

143.  This problem must be tackled by ensuring that the best teachers and leaders are incentivised to work in the schools and areas that need them the most, and by providing better advice and guidance to young people. Schools face a battle for resources and talent, and those serving poor white communities need a better chance of winning. Poor white children in rural and coastal areas have been "unseen" for too long; unless such steps are taken the potential of white working class children will be left unlocked, and the effects of the current trend will continue to be felt beyond the school gates. White working class children can achieve in education, and the Government must take these steps to ensure that they do.

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