Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Can Teesside Pass the Oxbridge Test? NOT a Single Pupil from a Middlesbrough School Went to Oxford or Cambridge Universities in 2009/2010. ANDY PASSANT Asks If Enough Is Being Done to Get Wider Access

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Can Teesside Pass the Oxbridge Test? NOT a Single Pupil from a Middlesbrough School Went to Oxford or Cambridge Universities in 2009/2010. ANDY PASSANT Asks If Enough Is Being Done to Get Wider Access

Article excerpt

IF you want to get your children into Oxbridge, you might be better off living in leafy Surrey.

Recent research shows the affluent South-east county sends more teenagers to Oxford and Cambridge Universities than 47 deprived local authorities put together.

The councils with the 10 highest numbers of Oxbridge entrants were all in the South-east.

By comparison, state schools in 11 local authority areas - including Middlesbrough - failed to send a single student to Oxford or Cambridge in 2009/10.

The figures, published by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, have been seen by some as further evidence of a north-south divide.

What is clear is that Teesside lags behind when it comes to sending young students to the dreaming spires of Oxbridge.

Debbie Clinton, headteacher at Nunthorpe School, said it was "a very complex issue", with many factors being involved.

But she says it is important to challenge perceptions of Oxbridge and raise the aspirations of Teesside students.

Debbie said: "I think a lot of our children are a little bit scared by it, they think it is not for them, they are not good enough for it.

"There is a mythology that it is full of people like David Cameron, that you have to be rich to go there which is nonsense, that you need to speak with the right accent.

"I don't think it is about them (Oxbridge). It is much more about us believing in ourselves."

Stockton-born writer and film-maker Laura Degnan, is an English Language and Literature Oxford graduate.

Laura, 28, who studied at St Anne's College said: "From my personal experience, I received a lot of support from Egglescliffe Sixth Form.

"A group of us were invited to attend an after-college meeting attended by representatives from Oxford and Cambridge before applying, which was really informative and inspiring.

"If not for that meeting and the subsequent support and encouragement, I might not have applied, and so I''m really grateful to all of the terrific teachers who assisted me. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.