“Children really do live in poverty in Britain!” “Universities aren’t doing enough to attract poorest pupils!” “Education gap grows between rich and poor!”
The working class, poverty, and the education gap: held against the backdrop of Britain-is-a-rich-state, the news has been rife with the topic of the poor in one form or another in the past weeks and months. Britain has moved from treating poverty, working-class families and education as three separate topics to one which forms a complex, interrelated matrix.
Today, the fact that some kids do better than others is nothing new; the relation between performing well and coming from well-off backgrounds is no coincidence.
Some of those from the old guard, swinging among the vines of the upper echelons of the hierarchy, still shrug off such claims, disclaiming them as nonsense and unfounded, and proclaiming everyone’s got the same opportunities, they just need to get off their backsides and do something about it. Luckily, most have come to realise there is a vicious void in society in which many are going around in circles; thankfully, the majority are asking the right question: why?
When governments do something good, especially in this arena, their efforts don’t make it to the headlines. Controversy, travesty, scandals – those are the headlines that sell newspapers, not fairness, equality and good-will.