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Education and Ambition

(Photo: USAG- Humphreys)

When it comes to educational attainment, good intentions aren’t enough.  New research, led by Liz Todd of Newcastle University, looks at schemes to increase the educational attainment of low-income children by changing “aspirations and attitudes“:

“For more than 10 years national and local policy has focused attention on raising aspirations. But there is no evidence that if you want to impact on the attainment of lower-income pupils that changing attitudes and aspirations is the way to go. There is an urgent need to change direction,” says Todd.  “It’s not that aspirations aren’t important. It’s not about turning them on but keeping them on track. It’s highly unlikely that any child starts school wanting to be unemployed.”

The researchers found that “the most effective way of helping children from low-income households to achieve their ambitions is engaging parents in their children’s learning and in their own learning and in providing a range of support for children such as mentoring.”

(HT: Naked Capitalism)