Saturday 17 February 2018

Service staff children miss out on college

John Walshe Education Editor

STUDENTS with waiters, barbers, chefs or postal workers for parents are poorly represented in college.

If parents work in service jobs -- their children are less likely to go to college, a new report finds.

This social category represents about 10pc of the population but it has the lowest participation rate in college, according to a report from the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) prepared for the Higher Education Authority.

Other groups such as children of professionals, managers, garda sergeants and government executive officials have much higher participation rates.

Men whose parents were in the lower service group were much more likely to fall into cycles of negative interaction in school.

This led to a process of gradual disengagement from school work and a desire to 'get away' from education.

The report found that many of the males were alienated from school at an early age. They felt that teachers had low expectations for them and saw college as an extension of school where their experience was often negative.

Where these young people were interested in college, financial factors impacted on their decisions to go or not to go. For some, the financial commitment was seen as too great .

It's one of two reports published by the ESRI today -- the second deals with the costs of higher education.

Irish Independent

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