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New report highlights impact of ethnicity on school attainment

12/10/2017 Joanna

The ethnicity of school students in the UK still plays a role in the way they are treated and their educational performance, a new government report has shown.

Coinciding with the launch of a new Ethnicity Facts and Figures website by prime minister Theresa May, the government has published the findings of a new audit of public services, which has compiled thousands of statistics showing how the experience of different ethnicities continues to differ in 21st-century Britain.

Educational attainment data revealed disparities between different groups at primary school that increase in secondary school, with Chinese and Asian pupils tending to perform better than white and black pupils, particularly those eligible for free school meals.

Children of black Caribbean descent were shown to be excluded from school three times as often as white British pupils, while 71 per cent of Chinese primary pupils met the expected standard for reading, writing and maths at key stage 2 in 2016, compared to 54 per cent of white British children and only 13 per cent of white gypsy and Roma pupils.

All of these figures - as well as others examining the impact of ethnicity on employment rates and within the criminal justice system - will be made publicly available on the Ethnicity Facts and Figures website, which will be updated regularly with new data to highlight disparities and ensure they are addressed.

Mrs May said: "What I hope this audit will bring is a change in attitude so that everyone is treated equally, no matter what their background, and this is never a barrier to getting on in life.

"By bringing this information together in one place for the first time, it will shine a light on the issues we are facing. We must now work together as a society to find solutions."

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