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Date: 16 June 2014
The educational underachievement of the white working class – and particularly boys – has been much noted and discussed over the past decade. The fact that white British boys in receipt of Free School Meals (FSM) are the lowest performing group at GCSE has occasioned much speculation on the causes of this, as well as discussion on the aspirations, abilities, and context of these young people compared to their peers in different ethnic groups, and economic brackets.
The 11 organisations in our portfolio working with children and young people in and out of secondary school were asked for their views on whether white working class boys faced distinctive barriers to educational attainment, and what these might be. They were also asked to reflect upon the successful methods they used to reach young people, and whether these might be usefully taken up by schools.