Education deeply divided by class, minister admits

This country has an education system that is deeply divided by
social class, the education secretary told trade unions,
writes Clare Jerrom.

Estelle Morris told the TUC conference in Blackpool: “At every
stage throughout our education system we have not yet broken the
link between poverty and education attainment.”

“That cannot be right,” she added.

Although 78 per cent of the children from families with middle
class incomes go to university, just 14 per cent of the children of
unskilled workers do, she said.

To achieve a socially inclusive society, she said, “is hugely
dependent on getting education and skills right”.

Morris said education was well treated by the Treasury in
the recent spending review, and with that money she wanted to
create “an education system for every child for every person for
every citizen”.

“All that needs to happen is for the children of the poor to
achieve as well as the children of the rich, for black children to
achieve as well as white children, and dare I say it, for boys to
achieve as well as girls,” she said.

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