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Poorer students to get two grade "head start"! watch

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    (Original post by NinjaPig)
    In his latest act of positive discrimination, Lord Mandelson today proposed all Caucasian runners be given a thirty second head start in the 2012 Olympic Games.

    He was quoted as saying "This is just the latest idea in New Labour's desperate headline-grabbing manifesto to level out broken Britain's molehill-ridden playing field. We all know a fat Scottish bloke has got no chance against a Kenyan over five thousand metres. We propose to fix that, without requiring the Scottish bloke to go on a trauma-inducing diet for health and safety reasons."

    In other news, Freddie Flintoff has today been implanted with the legs of a cheetah, if England are to have any chance of winning the final test.
    This'd be even funnier if it weren't so plausible.
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    (Original post by philjw)
    They're probably not any different in terms of IQ distribution, if that's what you mean. But they are better educated than working-class people, through a combination of better schools, paying more attention at school (culturally, it's true - admit it!) and parental expectations and support. None of those things will be changed a single jot by pretending that a working-class kid with ABB is academically the equal of a middle-class kid with AAA and shoving him into Oxbridge.
    But surely someone who's had to fight all these factors, and has still come out with decent grades is academically equal to the middle-class pupil who has been helped by his parents, is more respected by the teachers and has the material benefits of coming from a higher income family. If their positions were switched, then it is highly likely their grades would too. Isn't it wrong to deny the working-class student a chance to study at the country's best universities and to get a higher paid job just because someone else happened to have been born in a family that gave them these advantages?
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    They have this system in South Africa, black students get a lower score entry requirement than whites.
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    (Original post by ArtGoblin)
    But surely someone who's had to fight all these factors, and has still come out with decent grades is academically equal to the middle-class pupil who has been helped by his parents, is more respected by the teachers and has the material benefits of coming from a higher income family. If their positions were switched, then it is highly likely their grades would too. Isn't it wrong to deny the working-class student a chance to study at the country's best universities and to get a higher paid job just because someone else happened to have been born in a family that gave them these advantages?
    That just undermines the middle-class pupil's achievements - maybe they would have done just as well had they come from a less well-off background.
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    (Original post by ArtGoblin)
    But surely someone who's had to fight all these factors, and has still come out with decent grades is academically equal to the middle-class pupil who has been helped by his parents, is more respected by the teachers and has the material benefits of coming from a higher income family. If their positions were switched, then it is highly likely their grades would too. Isn't it wrong to deny the working-class student a chance to study at the country's best universities and to get a higher paid job just because someone else happened to have been born in a family that gave them these advantages?
    is this wrong though?
    is it not just...tough luck? everyone can't be born on equal footing, not everyone is equal.
    i wasn't born in the royal family, i don't have their privelidges. is it wrong that i am denied the things they're not just because i happened to be born into a normal family?
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    (Original post by ArtGoblin)
    But surely someone who's had to fight all these factors, and has still come out with decent grades is academically equal to the middle-class pupil who has been helped by his parents, is more respected by the teachers and has the material benefits of coming from a higher income family. If their positions were switched, then it is highly likely their grades would too. Isn't it wrong to deny the working-class student a chance to study at the country's best universities and to get a higher paid job just because someone else happened to have been born in a family that gave them these advantages?
    No, they're not academically equal. If they were academically equal they'd have the same grades. Life isn't Billy Elliot and universities can't dole out extra UCAS points for "trying hard" - everyone's got some sort of sob story they can tell about how they could have done better if they went to a better school/had more money/had both parents still around/didn't have so many days off sick/had been fed more Marmite when they were younger...
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    (Original post by Jonty99)
    That just undermines the middle-class pupil's achievements - maybe they would have done just as well had they come from a less well-off background.
    Exactly.
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    (Original post by Jonty99)
    That just undermines the middle-class pupil's achievements - maybe they would have done just as well had they come from a less well-off background.
    Maybe they would have - but statistics suggest otherwise.
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    (Original post by ArtGoblin)
    Maybe they would have - but statistics suggest otherwise.
    Well you can't really make such unfair guesses in real life though. That middle-class person with straight As or whatever isn't "statistics".

    We shouldn't just give pupils from poorer backgrounds an advantage because they "might" have done better were they more well-off. That isn't fair at all - they might NOT have done any better. Of course, the current system leaves a lot to be desired as well. Which is why I think reintroducing grammar schools is the best solution.
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    (Original post by Natasha_c)
    If its so stupid why is it that in private schools/ schools in middle class areas generally get better grades overall? Is this because they work harder? Because it seems clear they are offered a better education...
    And why do most top universitys have more private school student? (or at least a higher percentage of private school student compared with the percentage of private school students applying/ in the country)

    I agree that its unfair on some but better overal, as its harder to get a good grade with poor education. They should make state school better, but if they dont have the money...
    There are several reasons why people at private schools get better grades:
    Better teachers
    Smaller class sizes
    More supportive parents
    Ability to pay for extra tutoring/study materials
    Better genetics (I know this is controversial but the offspring of middle class professionals will almost inevitably be more intelligent than the offspring of unskilled manual labourers)
    Good role models - know what can happen when you work hard at school (parents are examples - big houses etc)
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    (Original post by BrightGirl)
    is this wrong though?
    is it not just...tough luck? everyone can't be born on equal footing, not everyone is equal.
    i wasn't born in the royal family, i don't have their privelidges. is it wrong that i am denied the things they're not just because i happened to be born into a normal family?
    Everyone should be equal. It's easy for people to say "That's just the way it is.", but I doubt you would be saying that if you were disadvantaged in every aspect of society, and you had to work harder than other people born into a richer family to get to where they started from.
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    Riiiight...
    So a kid growing up in a single parent family where the parent is hardly at home because they have to work to look after their three children, who has to look after her siblings since she is the eldest child, who lives in a "rough" area, goes to school which has a lack of staff and funds, would perform the same in an exam if she came from a middle class family and went to a private school?
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    Grammer schools will never come back. The govenment don't like them because creating a 2 tier school system is more expensive than comps. Middle class parents who could not afford private schools did not like them in case little Harry or Harriet did not pass the 11+ and got lumped in with the proles in a secondary modern.

    Margaret Thatcher as education secretary in the Heath government closed more grammers to save money than the previous labour government.

    As to postive discrimination for poor students, forget it, the system will be too easy to game and you'll get millionaires' kids with smart accountants saying they are on the breadline.
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    Could any of those expressing such 'outrage' at this idea please explain to me exactly what the proposals being made are, and how exactly they will impact on the grades of 'poorer' students? The only mention of a two grade 'head start' is in the opening paragraph, and maybe I'm missing something but there's no more information than that in this article; the rest is horribly vague. So what exactly is it you're all screaming about?
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    Get your facts right. Your vaunted heroine Thatcher was the one who abolished grammar schools.
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    (Original post by _Hayko)
    Riiiight...
    So a kid growing up in a single parent family the parent is hardly at home because they have to work to look after their three children, who has to look after her siblings since she is the eldest child, who lives in a "rough" area, goes to school which has a lack of staff and funds, would perform the same in an exam if she came from a middle class family and went to a private school?
    Maybe. You can't assume. It's not fair on those who ARE middleclass, seeing their achievements get devalued based on guesswork.
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    This is plain stupid.

    The Government shouldn't be trying to kill a tree by cutting off it's leaves.
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    (Original post by Roberto_Ferrari)
    There are several reasons why people at private schools get better grades:
    Better teachers
    Smaller class sizes
    More supportive parents
    Ability to pay for extra tutoring/study materials
    Better genetics (I know this is controversial but the offspring of middle class professionals will almost inevitably be more intelligent than the offspring of unskilled manual labourers)
    Good role models - know what can happen when you work hard at school (parents are examples - big houses etc)
    Why does everyone forget this: No National Curriculum! No "one-size-fits-all" strategy!

    In general, private schools adjust to their students' needs whilst in comps everyone is on the same level - regardless of high, middle or low ability.
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    This makes a mockery out of the hard work that students from lower-class backgrounds put into their education.

    It's like telling me that they gave me easy questions to get into medicine, or they gave me a BBB offer.

    Not amused.
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    (Original post by Jonty99)
    Well you can't really make such unfair guesses in real life though. That middle-class person with straight As or whatever isn't "statistics".

    We shouldn't just give pupils from poorer backgrounds an advantage because they "might" have done better were they more well-off. That isn't fair at all - they might NOT have done any better. Of course, the current system leaves a lot to be desired as well. Which is why I think reintroducing grammar schools is the best solution.
    While we can't know what grades someone would get living in different situations, there's plenty of sociological evidence to show working-class people are disadvantaged by the education system, which I'm not going to again. Besides, middle-class grades wouldn't change; they'd just have to compete against people they should be competing against anyway if the system was fair. Which is surely positive for the country as the people who are best for the job would get the position, rather than the one with richer parents.

    Oh, and grammar schools really don't work.
 
 
 
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