If we use the proportion of students eligible for free school meals (FSM) progressing to university as a measure of social mobility, it’s clear that the ‘London effect’ is very marked.
London’s FSM progression rate in 2012 was 58% compared to the national rate of 45% and it was the only English region with above average FSM university progression.
5,449 of the FSM students who progressed to university in 2012 are from London, this is 38% of England’s total.
30 of the 32 London boroughs have FSM progression rates above the national average. 20 of them are in the top 25 nationally for FSM progression.
Within this London effect, the college sector is playing a substantial role, accounting for all the top 10 providers in the city. Half of Inner London’s FSM university progressors come from the area’s 17 colleges with the other half coming from over 200 school sixth forms.
|Sixth form||% FSM students to HE||FSM students to HE|
|Newham sixth form college (NewVIc)||63%||265|
|City & Islington college||60%||246|
|Leyton sixth form college||64%||179|
|Sir George Monoux sixth form college||60%||156|
|Richmond upon Thames college||57%||114|
|Westminster Kingsway college||61%||104|
|St. Francis Xavier sixth form college||74%||104|
|Tower Hamlets college||57%||97|
|Christ the King sixth form college||64%||96|
|Ealing, Hammersmith & W. London college||52%||94|
England’s engines of mobility (October 2015)
NewVIc breaks all its university progression records (September 2015)
Russell group numbers soar in Newham (August 2015)
From Free School Meals to university (April 2015)