An enduring problem for educational policy makers in the UK is in accounting for why so few students from low socio-economic (SES) backgrounds are successful in school, and that while there has been a slight improvement in the educational achievement of working class children over the last twenty years, they are still twice as likely to leave school having underperformed with respect to their more affluent peers. This chapter unpicks the policy position on this question, founded on an assumption that underachievement is due to a lack of aspiration on the part of families and children. Against this, an alternative and more complex set of explanations are advanced, which illuminate a failure on the part of policy makers to imagine or understand the realities of school life for low SES students.
|Title of host publication
|The Working Class
|Subtitle of host publication
|Poverty, Education and Alternative Voices
|Acceptance date - 2018