Advanced search

71% of 'top people' went to private school, or grammar school

(282 Posts)
joanbyers Tue 20-Nov-12 13:27:14


"Ten leading independent schools accounted for 12% of the leading people for which schools data was available. These are: Eton College; Winchester College; Charterhouse School; Rugby School; Westminster School; Marlborough College; Dulwich College; Harrow School; St Paul’s Boys’ School; Wellington College (see table 1 for top 100 schools). "

It's interesting that these leading schools are pretty much ALL boarding schools, the significance of which is that the fees tend to be around £30k/year (so I reckon this is as much about parental connections as anything else)

Wellington does not have a glittering academic reputation, sending handfuls to Oxford. Charterhouse, on £32k/year, has a fraction of the Oxbridge admissions of the nearby Royal Grammar School, Guildford (fees only £13k/year) - which is present in the list, at #58, but behind schools for the rich but dim such as Bradfield

The leading independent schools that aren't exclusively boarding schools (and therefore implying super-rich parents) are all in London, which is home of the elite.

The leading comps are Holland Park School, where lefties send their kids for ideological reasons and which has had £10s of millions lavished on it, and Haverstock School, which is likewise a popular choice with the left-wing elite.

Just 10% of 'top people' attended a comprehensive.

Of course these figures are calculated many years in arrears, so not the best guide for the future, but the 44% of leading people who attended private schools I guess will increase, as the 27% who went to grammars die off (i.e. most of the grammar schools listed are now comps)

Heroine Tue 04-Dec-12 15:54:14

There is no way the bias from recruiting public school/oxbridge results in the brightest people. I have met people with cambridge degrees, and with oxbridge degrees who are not bright, as well as the brighter people from cambridge being about at bright as I am. Because I did not go to Oxbridge,I have been kicked out of development opportunities and seen people with less about them, worse work performance statistics and sometimes completely useless administration or intellectual skills get promoted soley because people make the same mistake as many posters here ie assuming they must be bright, even though they are showing no evidence of it, because they went to oxbridge.

I have an anecdote to illustrate this - I went on an informal tour of Oxford led by someone who was an Oxford graduate who could not find his way around the town. Even armed with a map, good local knowledge and a road sign, people on the bus kept obeying the loud posh voice saying 'Its this way chaps, come on!' and took my comments as dissent. When we had been going round in circles for an hour people acknowledged I was right BUT THEN STILL FOLLOWED HIS DIRECTIONS and made sympathetic noises for being late rather than go the correct way based on directions! It was frustrating to have the day later referred to as 'the day you threw a hissy fit' rather than 'the day that we followed that oxford guy who was nonetheless a bit thick because we thought he must be secretly clever because he had been to Oxford.

The fact is that once you go to oxbridge, you are likely to get an oxbridge degree. If they kicked out half on ability and replaced them with the brightest from non-oxbridge each year then you might have a point but they don't. the biggest problem is the application bias, that is then commuted, through no sensible reasoning, to a recruitment bias by top employers.

rabbitstew Fri 30-Nov-12 21:45:30

Are you calling me a yesterday's person, TalkinPeace2?!... grin

TalkinPeace2 Fri 30-Nov-12 21:40:24

please do not, ever, count me as a selective school defender
yesterday is as past as the Crimean War

rabbitstew Fri 30-Nov-12 21:26:20

And some people are so desperate to justify the cash they spend on advancing their children in life that they interpret dodgy data in the most curious ways, which just comes across as ridiculous.

rabbitstew Fri 30-Nov-12 21:23:18

Just came back to this thread.... I find it bizarre that my pointing out that human nature dictates that one minority group being rude about a majority group is very predictably going to result in people from said majority group being very rude back is somehow me approving of this, rather than stating the bl**dy obvious - "grown ups" are just a bunch of little kids fighting in the playground and if one person "started it" then it's OK to fight back in the same pathetic way. I would say a huge proportion of people do not improve the way they react to things when the chips are down as they grow up - just look at the way countries behave towards each other, or the way the Daily Mail talks about everyone, or the way the Tory party hate unions or unions hate the Tories.... I really find it amazing how much adults preach to children not to be childish, yet throughout the workplace and amongst world leaders, in newspapers and on internet threads, I see the same pathetic playground fighting, prejudice and name calling. So why APMF apparently finds this difficult to understand, or finds it offensive when I point the obvious out, I don't know.

Besides which, I went to a selective state school and I don't hate myself. I didn't think much of the system of selection, though, as I know too many people who were failed by it, either by being bright but non-academic in the grammar school and resenting the lack of practical challenge, or by being academic but in the secondary modern where there was insufficient intellectual challenge. I also don't like the idea of selection by money, although I feel relieved to know that if the alternative for my children were somewhere where they would receive a lousy education and be bullied mercilessly for being odd or posh, I could select somewhere else with my money... grin So I guess it comes down to how far you feel you need to go to ensure your children get a good deal in life. Some people seem to think this is only possible outside the state sector, or feel this is only guaranteed outside the state sector.

TalkinPeace2 Fri 30-Nov-12 20:54:17


OxandAssinine Fri 30-Nov-12 19:18:55


I will reread that tomorrow when I have not had two large glasses of wine

TalkinPeace2 Fri 30-Nov-12 18:37:28

I'll round from 7% to 10% as it makes the maths easier
1000 children hit school ....
100 go private 100 go state selective 800 go state non selective
they all sit GCSEs
after GCSE's statistically 30% kids leave education - and chances are they will all come from the non selective schools
so we now have 100 private 100 selective 500 non selective
after A levels, statistically another 1/3 leave full time education (they may do training courses but will not consider degrees)
again chances are they will not mostly come from the selective and private schools, so an approximation of the students applying for degrees would be
80 private 80 selective 140 non selective
then in degree choices, the kids aiming for RG degrees will be the upper third of that lot - and by definition, the selective school kids will be in the upper half of state, leaving
27 private 40 selective and 33 non selective
ie 27% from private schools at top universities, with not a hint of discrimination, just the likelihood of career choices
round back down from 10% to 7% and you end up with a quarter ....
which actually would be a significant improvement both for our children and the country.

wordfactory Fri 30-Nov-12 18:20:42

What bias is that talking...keep it simple, I am a dolt at numbers grin

wordfactory Fri 30-Nov-12 18:18:56

TOSN I think it is absolutely a cost issue that keeps less advanataged students local.

My point was only that advantage of a facet of both public school and Oxbridge. The later less obviously so, as in theory anyone can go. In practice, not so much.

TalkinPeace2 Fri 30-Nov-12 17:53:23

do not forget the sound statistical basis why there will always be a disproportionate number of private and selective school kids at top universities.
Once I did the maths it bothered me a lot less.

OxandAssinine Fri 30-Nov-12 17:46:25

Steaming grin

I will ask her next time she says it.

losingtrust Fri 30-Nov-12 16:14:49

I am going to encourage mine to go away if possible although we have Aston, Warwick even oxford and Birmingham close by but the experience of independence would be better. Having said that it very much depends on my job situation at the time. At the moment can afford to pay their costs but in six years who knows?

losingtrust Fri 30-Nov-12 16:12:05

I really respected my two friends who went to Cambridge because they worked their asses off to get there and were very single minded. They were both from very deprived backgrounds. Total respect from me as as soon as I found out what was involved I took the lazy option and went to another Russell group uni. Having said that never worked with anyone senior who went there.

TheOriginalSteamingNit Fri 30-Nov-12 16:11:00

losing - definitely, I think.

losingtrust Fri 30-Nov-12 16:08:18

Surely going to your local university is a cost issue?

TheOriginalSteamingNit Fri 30-Nov-12 15:58:37

(SIL, sorry blush)

TheOriginalSteamingNit Fri 30-Nov-12 15:58:06

Ox - perhaps your sister has read 'Flatlands'? grin

wordfactory Fri 30-Nov-12 15:51:25

In theory cat yes.

In practice the most selective schools (both private and grammar) take up the most places at Oxbridge.

Many woeking class students go to their nearest university and remain living at home. Most don't go to university at all.

Oxbridge, despite everyhting they do to counteract, remains resolutely middle class/advantaged.

losingtrust Fri 30-Nov-12 15:25:31

I am a working class brummie too funnily enough!

catinhat Fri 30-Nov-12 15:16:32

As an employer I love to give jobs to people who went to Cambridge.

I went to Cambridge and it was flipping hardwork. Therefore, anyone who survived the experience is probably very bright.

However, a Cambridge graduate is very different to someone who went to private school. The former will be incredibly able and motivated, regardless of how much money their parents have. The latter is just someone whose parents could afford private school fees.

People often mix up with elitism of Oxbridge with the elitism of privates schools, but they are completely different issues.

APMF Fri 30-Nov-12 15:14:05

The 'funny' thing is that I'm the working class Midlander yet I'm the 'snobby elitist' parent in this conversation. smile smile

It's a bit like those people who will pay lots of money to visit a region in which the poor inhabitants are doing their best to escape.

APMF Fri 30-Nov-12 15:00:26

My kids know that they are very lucky. They know that not every one can afford what we can. They know that God created all men to be equal regardless of colour, religion or economic circumstances.

My mind boggles at the thought that people think their DCs can't learn these values in a middle class environment like a private school.

losingtrust Fri 30-Nov-12 14:53:21

Glad we are making you laugh.

APMF Fri 30-Nov-12 14:50:34

I am not trying to get into a competition as to whose DC has the more 'diverse' groupvof friends.

There is diversity of some sort every where you go. I just find it silly that mixing with people less well-off than yourself is being elevated to a higher level.

I find it funny that middle class parents want their kids to mix with working class people so as to become more 'rounded'. I wonder if working class parents regard your kids in the same way you regard kids that go to private school smile smile

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: