General Article Faith school admissions may promote social inequality

Topic Selected: Religion
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Faith schools’ admission rules have unfair ‘white middle-class’ criteria and discriminate against immigrant applicants, says head of the Office of the Schools Adjudicator (OSA), Ian Craig.

The partially selective schools are permitted to favour members of their faith, with many operating on a points system. Prospective pupils have an increased chance of being accepted if, for example, their parents are involved in church-based volunteering.

However, critics have in the past argued that parents with less free time to spare or those lacking in skill at manoeuvring the often complicated points-based systems to their advantage are likely to lose out.

Craig said: ‘We have come across points that benefit white middle-class areas and don’t benefit the immigrant children in the community,’ as reported in the Guardian newspaper. He added that the issue predominantly concerns Christian schools as they significantly outnumber other faith schools.

The points system assumes that parents have...

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