Faith schools are 'cherry picking' too many children from affluent families and contributing to racial and religious segregation, according to the most extensive research of its kind, based on the government's own data.
Their research showed 17 per cent of pupils at faith schools are eligible for free school meals compared with 25 per cent at non-religious schools. Faith schools educate just under 20 per cent of lowest-ability pupils compared with 31 per cent of non-religious schools. Faith schools also educate a greater proportion of the pupils who score highest before arriving in secondary education.
'This research poses important questions for policymakers,' West said. 'My concern is that the [current system] is giving schools an incentive to select pupils who are easier to teach.'
Guardian, September 16, 2007