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    So I am reading this V. interesting article on the Guardian which, in short, lays down the following points:

    1.16-year-olds [in state state schools] make their A-level choices relying on hearsay, myth and information that is outdated or uncheckable.

    2.
    Kids at private school can rely on schools that have continual informal contact with elite universities.

    3.Those in the private sector are not only advised to choose the right subjects but will achieve better grades due to a myriad of reasons. Better qualified teachers, peer pressure, significantly smaller class sizes...

    It concludes that,
    this ''is creating needless inequality of opportunity and is just the most obvious example of how poor access to informal knowledge penalises state school kids.'' and ''When the system fails bright kids from non-privileged backgrounds, we all lose''.
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    (Original post by arminb)
    So I am reading this V. interesting article on the Guardian which, in short, lays down the following points:

    1.16-year-olds [in state state schools] make their A-level choices relying on hearsay, myth and information that is outdated or uncheckable.

    2.
    Kids at private school can rely on schools that have continual informal contact with elite universities.

    3.Those in the private sector are not only advised to choose the right subjects but will achieve better grades due to a myriad of reasons. Better qualified teachers, peer pressure, significantly smaller class sizes...

    It concludes that,
    this ''is creating needless inequality of opportunity and is just the most obvious example of how poor access to informal knowledge penalises state school kids.'' and ''When the system fails bright kids from non-privileged backgrounds, we all lose''.
    With point 1 I'm not sure what that has to do with teachers tbh - I made my A Level choices without any advice from teachers at all; it was a combination of what I wanted to do, emailing Uni's and some friends of the family for advice

    2. Well that is something you'd expect if you're paying 10 grand a term for school really?

    3. Again there's got to be some perks of paying 10 grand a term for school, otherwise people wouldn't do it?

    Your conclusion: I 100% agree... However... Iirc uni's have to accept a minimum number of students from disadvantaged backgrounds? So while the private school kids have the money and grades the "less privileged" people don't particularly lose
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    Everything you need to know is in plain sight on the internet. Universities tell you exactly what they want. This website, while containing a lot of bull****, does have enough good advice to help people.
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    yes i agree which is why a private education is well worth it. investing in a child's education is the best thing possible (note; i wasnt privately educated before i get accused of elitism lolz)
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    Political Ambassador
    Moved to Educational Debate.
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    It is an article on The Grauniad about Private Schools, I can already tell it is going to be 99% nonsense, lies, and rhetoric.
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    (Original post by james22)
    Everything you need to know is in plain sight on the internet. Universities tell you exactly what they want. This website, while containing a lot of bull****, does have enough good advice to help people.
    Yeah, this is the case but I only learnt about TSR when I was in yr 11, pretty close to my GCSE time. I achieved well, just not my complete potential.
    TSR greatly informed me after though, and really changed me, to say the least. It let me aim high. Before TSR I just did a bit of work and went home but this really got me to take education seriously.

    I think if people had TSR in school, it would help greatly, as long as the relationship section was closed lol.
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    Privately educated elite propagates wild inequality between private and state school pupils. What's the news here?
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    (Original post by arminb)
    16-year-olds [in state state schools] make their A-level choices relying on hearsay, myth and information that is outdated or uncheckable.
    Information about subjects that are required and not acceptable are available on university websites/apprenticeship scheme websites etc. I cannot believe that the state sector is in such a bad way as to not be able to afford computers and internet access to reach these web pages. I am struggling to see what real advantage this person is seeing for private students in choosing their A-Levels.

    Kids at private school can rely on schools that have continual informal contact with elite universities.
    I'm not even sure what this is supposed to mean, or how it would benefit private students.

    3.Those in the private sector are not only advised to choose the right subjects but will achieve better grades due to a myriad of reasons. Better qualified teachers, peer pressure, significantly smaller class sizes...
    It wasn't my experience that private schools advise students what subjects to take. That was entirely left to me.

    Obviously, private schools nearly always provide a better education than state schools. That is why parents pay lots of money to send their children there.

    It concludes that this ''is creating needless inequality of opportunity and is just the most obvious example of how poor access to informal knowledge penalises state school kids. When the system fails bright kids from non-privileged backgrounds, we all lose''.
    Informal knowledge? Again, what does that mean? All the requirements and recommendations to get into top universities are freely available on their websites. I don't know what sort of secret information this person thinks private schools are privy to. It's as simple as private schools providing a better education.
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    I'm sure some schools provide better advice than others, but university websites/the internet provide a good resource that everyone can use.
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    (Original post by Birkenhead)
    Information about subjects that are required and not acceptable are available on university websites/apprenticeship scheme websites etc. I cannot believe that the state sector is in such a bad way as to not be able to afford computers and internet access to reach these web pages. I am struggling to see what real advantage this person is seeing for private students in choosing their A-Levels.



    I'm not even sure what this is supposed to mean, or how it would benefit private students.



    It wasn't my experience that private schools advise students what subjects to take. That was entirely left to me.

    Obviously, private schools nearly always provide a better education than state schools. That is why parents pay lots of money to send their children there.



    Informal knowledge? Again, what does that mean? All the requirements and recommendations to get into top universities are freely available on their websites. I don't know what sort of secret information this person think private schools are privy to. It's as simple as private schools providing a better education.
    Take your blinkers off. Most schools have one careers officer for 200+ kids, private schools have far more resources for far less pupils.
    Excuse it however you want, private schools are simply another way that money begets money in our country. I see them as nothing more than a way to bribe your way to a better level of education and thus life.
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    (Original post by MedicineMann)
    Take your blinkers off. Most schools have one careers officer for 200+ kids, private schools have far more resources for far less pupils.
    Yes, they do. I don't think I said otherwise. What I was taking issue with was the nebulous idea of 'informal contact' and 'information' with universities, as well as the idea that private schools somehow give students an advantage when choosing their A-Levels.

    Excuse it however you want, private schools are simply another way that money begets money in our country. I see them as nothing more than a way to bribe your way to a better level of education and thus life.
    Speaking as someone who was raised in grotty South London and who received a scholarship and substantial bursary to a public school after years of hard work, knows others who also had all their fees paid for them and also witnessed the good that my school did for state schools in the area, I would suggest that you are the one with blinkers on. It is hardly as simple as all that. I would also point out that although class sizes are smaller etc. you do not get your grades on a plate. You still have to work bloody hard and there were plenty of people doing poorly academically because of their failure to understand this.
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    You get what you pay for - I mean that's the whole point of paying for private education isn't it?

    Its not our fault we're private schooled.
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    Information about subject choices are not freely available on the universities website. When I applied for history at Oxford, all the advice was that history is highly recommended to be taken at A-levels. Some schools dont even offer certain subjects such as further maths, I highly recommend you to read the article before posting comments. The system fails '' the system fails bright kids from non-privileged backgrounds''. This means that highly talented pupils in state schools won't realise their potential and can't choose the right course to apply to. Even when they do, their subject choice fails them. Even if it doesn't fail them, they won't have sufficient advice with other parts of their application. LSE, for example, places a huge emphasis on the personal statement. If you have highly educated parents and v. qualified teachers they can help you with writing it. I am going to put my OWN personal experience so that you'd know what I am talking. And yes I am ready to be labelled a hypocrite for that:
    My mother and father are doctors
    My Sociology teacher had a PhD from Cambridge
    My Psychology teacher had a PhD from UCL
    My English Lit. teacher had a BA from Durham and worked at Oxford
    My History teacher wen't to Birmingham but was highly experienced
    And,
    there were only 8 students in my sociology class, 4 in English lit ,2 in Psychology and 3 in History. My parents offered me to pay 450 pounds for preparation before my Oxford interview but I refused.
    Do you see the difference? I failed to get into Oxford because I am dumb as **** but imagine if a talented student had parents who could afford this and who could encourage him to value education. What could he achieve?
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    (Original post by solarplexus)
    You get what you pay for - I mean that's the whole point of paying for private education isn't it?

    Its not our fault we're private schooled.
    And where did I suggest that?
    The article blames the 'system' not the subjects.
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    I wouldn't call it 'game the elite universities'. It shouldn't be the job of top universities to correct the vast inequality in education standards in this country, which will exist for as long as there are fee paying schools, they should be accepting the most academically able students that already meet the required standards.
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    (Original post by Birkenhead)
    Yes, they do. I don't think I said otherwise. What I was taking issue with was the nebulous idea of 'informal contact' and 'information' with universities, as well as the idea that private schools somehow give students an advantage when choosing their A-Levels.

    Speaking as someone who was raised in grotty South London and who received a scholarship and substantial bursary to a public school after years of hard work, knows others who also had all their fees paid for them and also witnessed the good that my school did for state schools in the area, I would suggest that you are the one with blinkers on. It is hardly as simple as all that. I would also point out that although class sizes are smaller etc. you do not get your grades on a plate. You still have to work bloody hard and there were plenty of people doing poorly academically because of their failure to understand this.
    Speaking as someone who was raised in a grotty Leeds council estate and who worked very hard to get decent A levels and a place at an excellent university, I can tell you that the vast majority of my peers were deeply let down by the careers service at my school. My best friend was told by the career adviser not to apply to a Russell group university so ended up with AAB but a place at Hull University. I couldn't see this happening to someone who's parents had given them the leg up of a place at private school.

    EDIT
    I wouldn't call it 'game the elite universities'. It shouldn't be the job of top universities to correct the vast inequality in education standards in this country, which will exist for as long as there are fee paying schools, they should be accepting the most academically able students that already meet the required standards.


    As long as the universities are subsidised by the government they have a duty to select the most capable students. This includes working hard to spot talented pupils from state school who have not achieved their potential because of the circumstance of their education.
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    Well, as a state school student, I received very little guidance on what subjects to take for A-Level. It would have been much more useful to have had some kind of talk about what subjects would help with particular degrees, when they are not required subjects.

    Example: I was sat next to a girl in one of my french classes at uni this term. We were talking and I was saying about how I hadn't done any literature analysis since GCSE because I hadn't picked it for A-Level, nor was it covered in my French A-Level. Her response was to tell me that she would never have dreamed of not picking English Lit if she was going to study languages, which felt somehow a little insulting at the time.

    This is the kind of disparity that, at first, does put those in top schools way above everyone else, even if this is evened out at uni.
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    Private school gives average students, excellent grades.. I have seen many private school students struggle when the playing field is levelled. It also seems as though they lack the social skills to interact with people on different social levels.
    Source: own experience while studying dentistry at university... and passing through pretty average/poor public schools

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    (Original post by MedicineMann)
    [/COLOR][/FONT]
    As long as the universities are subsidised by the government they have a duty to select the most capable students. This includes working hard to spot talented pupils from state school who have not achieved their potential because of the circumstance of their education.
    Oxford and Cambridge already do this. State applicants already have a leg up in the application process.
 
 
 
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