Merton had the highest number of successful applicants to Cambridge University between 2010-2015. What do you think?

(4 Posts)
LocalEditorMerton Fri 20-Oct-17 13:03:27

Just read this article on the BBC website regarding David Lammy's data collation showing 'shocking" Oxbridge regional bias (with more offers made to Home Counties pupils than the whole of northern England).

Whilst Merton doesn't feature at all in the Top 10 for Oxford, for Cambridge University it's the top area for most successful candidates between 2010-2015!

Would be interesting to know what you think of the article and stats? As expected, or a surprise?

gazzalw Sun 22-Oct-17 11:02:03

Couldn't really tell from that article whether it meant Merton resident or educated young people, as there's a difference, although obviously with overlap! Sure I've read that about 35% of local children are educated 'out of borough' at secondary school level.

It doesn't surprise me if the statistic that Merton has the highest number of graduates per capita - of any London borough - is anything to go by. Well educated parents are more likely to foster high academic aspiration in their DC, are they not?

Some of it will be to do with having lots of children attending high-achieving independent schools, particularly King's College Wimbledon and Wimbledon High School. And, no doubt, many will be schooled at other more central London ones too. And that doesn't include the ones at boarding schools (totally off my radar so wouldn't have a clue about numbers).

BUT many children educated in the state sector must contribute to these stats too, surely? Lots of Merton children go to schools which do regularly send decent numbers of students to Oxbridge - the Tiffin schools, all five of the Sutton grammars, Graveney - and that's just for starters.

Wonder what the stats are for the Merton state secondaries. Feel sure that they will contribute too, given that they all have excellent/good Ofsted reports and best progress for pupils (at GCSE level) stats in England. Again I wouldn't have a clue about numbers.

JilledOut Mon 23-Oct-17 10:09:11

Well the better educated you are the more money you earn, the more likely you are to live in the posh parts of Wimbledon and so on. Hardly a surprise to me that Wimbledon has more successful applicants than Tottenham. Can't ever see Tottenham being a hipster paradise with artisan bakers and brewers moving in gentrifying the area either so it will remain so.

gazzalw Mon 23-Oct-17 10:48:09

Errr, it's not just Wimbledon that's singled out for mention but all of Merton hmm. Merton is very much a borough of two halves (the haves and the have nots) though, so I get where you're coming from. If the successful applicants were 'pinned' on a borough map there would most likely be a massive clustering towards SW19/SW20 postcodes rather than CR4. In an ideal world it shouldn't be like that though, should it?

Interestingly, in the 30s/40s/50s/60s there were increasing numbers of grammar school children (in an era when most DC from affluent backgrounds wouldn't have gone to state secondaries) breaking into the Oxbridge enclave. Those times seemed to foster meritocracy in a way that no longer seems to be the case.

Many friends had professional parents (mainly doctors and lawyers) but their great/grandparents were from much more 'humble' (working class) backgrounds. And of friendship group most have got at least one Oxbridge educated sibling and/or child. Is that meritocracy in evidence?

I would argue that many 'northerners' who have ambitions have in the past come down to London/South East (economic migrants) in search of more career opportunities and a better lifestyle. What would David Lammy's stats show if they looked at place of birth and other such variables?

It would also be interesting to know % from state vs independent schools in those stats.

And don't you find it interesting that successful Oxford applicants' provenance seems markedly different, with three northern strongholds - Gateshead, York and Darlington. What's that all about?

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