There’s an important number missing here

Oxford University has been accused of “social apartheid” after figures showed that nearly one in three colleges failed to admit a single black British A-level student in 2015.

Data requested by David Lammy, the former Labour minister for higher education, and published by the Guardian, showed that 10 out of 32 Oxford colleges did not admit a black British pupil with A-levels in 2015.

How many applied? Without that we’ve no chance at all at working out where the filtering is taking place, have we?

21 thoughts on “There’s an important number missing here”

  1. What’s this whole “something-Apartheid” trend we’re seeing? Is it the new lefty buzz phrase template?

    It’s the third time this week I’ve seen it in the left-wing press.

    Is it now OK to accuse the Graun of ‘thinking apartheid’ rather than the less emotive hypocrisy (stupidity)?

  2. There were black students at my college when I was at Oxford in the late 80s. Something must have changed. Oh I know. The confrontational attitude of left wingers determined to find signs of oppression everywhere. That can’t possibly affect choices by black people can it?

    The applicant numbers raises a point though. Tim thinks equality of opportunity. Lamy thinks equality of outcome.

    And then last but not least we have the perennial racial differences in IQ issue that will inevitably mean hugely different proportions than expectations at the top end if you think IQs are just environmental.

  3. ““Difficult questions have to be asked, including whether there is systematic bias inherent in the Oxbridge admissions process that is working against talented young people from ethnic minority backgrounds,” said Lammy, the Labour MP for Tottenham and the first black Briton to attend Harvard Law School.”

    Given how he turned out, it’s not hard to see why universities might not want to bother…

  4. Bloke no Longer in Austria

    Come on Tim, more neoliberal sophistry trying to equate cause and effect.

    Just because people haven’t applied doesn’t mean that they shouldn’t be admitted.

    Pshaw, next you’ll be wanting people to pass exams or sumpfink.

  5. “Lammy noted that “there are almost 400 black students getting three As at A-level or better every year,” yet few of them are attracted to apply to Oxford or Cambridge. Around 3% of the British population identified as black in the last UK census.”

    But many of the better courses need an A* in there. What’s that then down to?

    One thing also to note: university is a very middle class thing. It goes beyond merely gaining knowledge or getting a better job. It’s a form of walkabout to kids. To parents, they have a misguided sense of what it means. They think it’s like gaining a magic totem. I suspect someone without those pressures looking at it rationally might decide that say, a degree in English is less valuable than taking an office job in an estate agency.

  6. So Much For Subtlety

    Chris Miller – “I thought we’d demonstrated that black kids (however defined) now do better than poor white lads?”

    Doesn’t matter does it? Because it is all racism. Just as the Black students of Cornell have been protesting because too many places for Black students are going to the wrong sort of Black students – that is, students from Africa and the Caribbean. Not enough going to, like, Black Black students.

    It is a mystery how the examiners can determine which Blacks are descended from American slaves and which are not in such a way that they can discriminate innit?

  7. It is a mystery how the examiners can determine which Blacks are descended from American slaves and which are not in such a way that they can discriminate innit

    Yes, there was that ridiculous report a week or so ago claiming ‘racism’ was the reason why fewer Pakistanis and Bangladeshis own property compared to whites, Indians etc.

    Yes, clearly, because “knuckle dragging racists” are nevertheless sophisticated enough to distinguish between Indians and Bangladeshis.

    It’s fucking pathetic lies. No one takes stuff like that seriously any more, only the weirdos. Normal people hear the shrill squeal of ‘racism!’ now and just filter it out, “meh”.

  8. @Bloke on M4

    There’s plenty of kids with the grades required (predicted or actual) who get turned down. I was offered a low grade entry to Cambridge (12 points, I think it was) as Corpus Christi hadn’t found enough people for my course that year. One acquaintance had 3 A’s and didn’t get their course (Girton?) as it was oversubscribed. College accepted them, but the course didn’t.

    That was obviously racism. Or something.

  9. I had a couple of black friends in school, there weren’t many blacks there to be honest. Not at so much per term in fees.
    Of the black friends I had, both applied to university and got in.
    Neither applied to Oxbridge, they wanted particular other universities.

    That’s the thing though isn’t it – people wanting to get in to a different university by choice. Where friends are going, where they liked on a visit, where a particular course is being run, where particular lecturers are based, where particular employers are based. Or simply not far from part of the family.

    Back in the late 80s I looked particularly at universities close enough to travel to my nan’s house. Plus close enough to nip home for a weekend from.
    I had zero interest in the London universities, I had zero interest in the south coast universities.
    By choice.

    I also had zero interest in Oxbridge universities. Again by choice.

    Much apparently to the annoyance of those who do not like others having a choice.

  10. But Mr Lammy is part of the problem here – he is effectively reinforcing a narrative that Oxbridge is hostile to black (what does he mean by that term anyway?) students. I know teachers who have had really good students not apply because of this sort of narrative – the same way as the National Union of Students campaign against fees had the effect of convining some poor students not to apply to University because they couldn’t afford it (one criticism that the current fee regime cannot be accused of)…

    Do these people ever think what the effect of their moronic pronunciations will be – it certainly is never the one they want, so maybe, if they actually cared for people, they might consider what their words do achieve. If I was a bright black kid in Tottenham, with aspirations, and David Lammy (apparently a role model) keeps appearing implying that there is racism at the top univerisites, why the hell would I go there.

  11. So Much For Subtlety

    Slightly related to this topic, someone has just committed career suicide:

    Popular investor Marc Faber, author of the “Gloom Boom & Doom Report” newsletter, wrote in his most recent edition that he was glad the U.S. had been founded and ruled by white people rather than black people.

    “And thank God white people populated America, and not the blacks. Otherwise, the US would look like Zimbabwe, which it might look like one day anyway, but at least America enjoyed 200 years in the economic and political sun under a white majority,” Faber wrote in the newsletter, according to CNBC.

    Well. Yeah.

  12. Pingback: Not every genius aspires to Oxbridge | White Sun of the Desert

  13. Bloke in Costa Rica

    It is only the presence of Richard Burgon that prevents Lammy from winning the title of “Thickest Labour MP”. Does anyone remember his appearance on Celebrity [sic] Mastermind? What a dunderhead.

  14. Quite so, BiCR. Someone just a hairsbreadth smarter than Lammy would have thought: I’m not going on Mastermind to show everyone what an idiot I am. But no, he really thinks he’s jolly clever.

  15. So Much For Subtlety

    Bloke in Costa Rica – “It is only the presence of Richard Burgon that prevents Lammy from winning the title of “Thickest Labour MP”.”

    Is there any African-origin leader who does not sound, well, you know, mentally retarded?

    I used to be quite fond of old Kenneth Kaunda. Didn’t torture that many people. Certainly didn’t eat any that I know of. That makes him one of the better ones. With his juju walking stick and waving his handkerchief.

    But then one day it occurred to me that it wasn’t just an accent. He just really was very dim.

    Obama is probably the only exception I can think of offhand. And that is not to say that he is smart. Just that he could learn to do an upwards tilt of the head, looking off into the distance with a “I didn’t just [email protected]” expression that makes everything sound profound.

  16. Obama has this weird thing going on with his sibillants. I thought the one benefit of living in the US was superb dentistry?

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