Two indicators that are often used to measure class differences in achievement are whether children have free school meals and the proportion of working class pupils in higher education.
Free School Meals
Whether children have free school meals is often used as a measure of child poverty.
In pairs, study the figures below. Discuss the differences you can see and suggest reasons for those differences:
|5 A* to C
|Children receiving free school meals
|Children not receiving free school meals
Source: DfES GCSE attainment tables 2006
Working class students at university
Furlong and Forsyth (2003) found four main factors contributed to the difficulties faced by working class students in applying to university and in their experiences once there. These factors were:
- lack of familiarity with the higher education system
- lack of funds
- fear of debt
- feelings of cultural isolation
Explain how each of these factors may contribute to the difficulties faced by working class pupils when applying to or attending university.