Does being privately educated mean discrimination at job interviews?

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Up Town Girl
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Does being privately educated mean discrimination at job interviews?

Postby Up Town Girl » Thu Jul 28, 2022 3:18 pm

We are in the process of deciding which way to go for our eldest's (son) secondary education. I have done the rounds of the usual London day Schools and as expected they are very impressive and the boys that I met all delightful. I have no doubt that he would have a great time at any of them.

My question is will I be making things tougher on him in the long run. Friends I speak to with older age children are telling me that that privately educated students, particularly boys are getting an increasingly tougher ride when it comes to university place allocation and internship/ job opportunities. I don't want to bust a gut to send him somewhere that will be a huge weight around his neck further down the line.

Would love to know if anyone here has experienced or understands similar? 

 
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HenryHoover
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Re: Does being privately educated mean discrimination at job interviews?

Postby HenryHoover » Thu Jul 28, 2022 4:11 pm

Hi Up Town Girl, I don't think that you are being told the whole truth.

I hate to use the word but I think it is more a case that some companies, particularly larger employers are trying to level the playing field for those who don't have the opportunity to flick through mummy and daddy's address book and sort themselves out a load of work experience which in turn helps with their CV, job applications, interviews etc. etc. There are more application systems in place, blind interviews, no shortcuts for children of friends etc.

If that makes it tougher for the priveleged then so be it but I am not so sure it is discrimination. It does make it fairer all round. Don't know about uni places maybe someone else will have a view on that??
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Scottov
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Re: Does being privately educated mean discrimination at job interviews?

Postby Scottov » Mon Aug 01, 2022 6:04 am

Of course it’s not true.
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Ratski
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Re: Does being privately educated mean discrimination at job interviews?

Postby Ratski » Mon Aug 01, 2022 6:58 am

You could always pull them out just before they do the exams and sit them at the local 6th form college and remove any reference to the private education.

They love people playing the system.
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Re: Does being privately educated mean discrimination at job interviews?

Postby Guest » Mon Aug 01, 2022 8:39 am

I concur with previous post about companies trying to level the playing field (I’m an HR Director).
Send him where you can afford and where he’ll be happiest.
I suspect he’ll be leaving whichever school he goes to stacked by advantage and the world will be his oyster regardless!
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Fat Paw
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Re: Does being privately educated mean discrimination at job interviews?

Postby Fat Paw » Mon Aug 01, 2022 9:23 am

It depends. Job applications do ask for your background (ethnicity, type of education, if you got free school lunches, the background (education and professional) of parents etc.) and YES, it does play into their recruitment. Similarly, it applies to universities.

I personally think this is not the correct solution to solving inequality. I am a graduate who is/was an au pair (hence why I am on NappyValley!) - and the whole university / grad role search has never been so dictated outside of merit. There are programs such as 'Ten Thousand Black Interns' and 'Bright Network' which provide facilities for underprivileged groups - however only on the basis of their ethnicity rather than class. As a minority myself, these programs were filled with students who attended major London Unis and impressive high schools/colleges.

This is not the say if you hit xyz requirements, you immediately get in, but there is definitely a shift towards lowering the number of students / grads into certain roles and universities to pave a way for students coming from 'disadvantaged' backgrounds.
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munteria
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Re: Does being privately educated mean discrimination at job interviews?

Postby munteria » Mon Aug 01, 2022 9:55 am

Yes. it is happening in the workplace, and it probably should be. Hopefully, gone are the days when the CEO’s privately educated nephew lands the prized internship! However, I do agree with the previous poster to send him to the school you think he will be happiest / the best fit if you can afford the fees for 5/7 years. Any perceived ‘disadvantage’ will be outweighed by contacts. Plus you don’t know what’s going to happen in 7 or 10 years time.

In terms of university, really the only pupils that will truly be at an ‘advantage’ are those in the categories above (eg pupil premium, under performing state school in deprived area etc). So sending him to the leafy comp in south west London instead of an independent school won’t make any difference! Saying that, there are some universities who give a tick to a pupil who attends any state school eg Durham, but not many, I don’t think (plus this could change in 7 years!). Most uni’s look at contextual offers based on the above categories. So unless you want to try to play the system by moving house and sending him to an under performing school a deprived area, then it won’t make a difference!
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Mumonthestreets
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Re: Does being privately educated mean discrimination at job interviews?

Postby Mumonthestreets » Mon Aug 01, 2022 9:59 am

Fat Paw wrote:
Mon Aug 01, 2022 9:23 am
It depends. Job applications do ask for your background (ethnicity, type of education, if you got free school lunches, the background (education and professional) of parents etc.) and YES, it does play into their recruitment. Similarly, it applies to universities.
Job applications literally do not ask any of these things, and if they did it would be a ready made employment tribunal. 
 
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publicschoolboy
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Re: Does being privately educated mean discrimination at job interviews?

Postby publicschoolboy » Mon Aug 01, 2022 12:00 pm

Yes, it does. And is part of the reason why (along with the broad quality of London state schools) that I would never send my own kids private.

Take a look at how dramatically Oxbridge entry has dropped from leading public schools (KCS has been v public about it). I'd argue (as someone who attended an elite public school) that's entirely appropriate.

Employers can do this far more easily. Every major employer with a grad scheme is screening for educational background.

And this isn't discrimination, it's a re-levelling of a playing field. Ultinately, you are likely to be disadvantaging your kids.

Don't sign up to 15 years of doing the same job you hate, just to buy an old school tie. Keep the £ and buy them a property (which is of course every bit as unmeritocratic, but not as toxic).
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Bunnypigeon1
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Re: Does being privately educated mean discrimination at job interviews?

Postby Bunnypigeon1 » Mon Aug 01, 2022 2:25 pm

It’s probably the leading reason behind the increased applications to American universities….why spend all your money, time and effort on excellent schools only to then be told you can’t get a place at oxbridge because you spent too much money, time and effort. Ivy League institutions have no such hang ups!
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TFP
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Re: Does being privately educated mean discrimination at job interviews?

Postby TFP » Mon Aug 01, 2022 5:16 pm

In terms of university applications, being privately schooled still confers a benefit since: (a) it improves the chances of getting the top grades; and (b) even then, the private schools still get a higher share of Oxbridge places than they do of top grades (e.g. of A*A*A at A level or some similar benchmark). The reasons for (a) are obvious (budget/class sizes), the reasons for (b) are more complicated, it's a combination of it pupils being more likely to apply and applications having higher success rate. But it is true that the advantages/benefits aren't quite as large as they used to be (e.g. say 30 years ago the private schools' share of Oxbridge places was a very long way higher than their share of AAB at A level, the equivalent gap is still there but is smaller), and may in the future get smaller still.

In terms of job applications, there's nothing like the same quality of data available, but I should still think that being privately educated confers a significant benefit.

whether private schooling is a better investment than say residential property or whatever is a whole other question.
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Saturday
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Re: Does being privately educated mean discrimination at job interviews?

Postby Saturday » Tue Aug 02, 2022 11:38 am

They are not getting an ”increasingly tougher ride”; they may be experiencing a fairer system which is what many children from state school haven’t had in the past. So yes, compared to the past they may perceive the system as tougher, but it’s just fairer on everyone. About time, although there’s still a long way to go.
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Hanleymoore
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Re: Does being privately educated mean discrimination at job interviews?

Postby Hanleymoore » Tue Aug 02, 2022 11:27 pm

Statistically, there is last time I checked still a better chance of getting into oxbridge from a private school. Just.

Having interviewed 100s of people for Mayfair jobs, what do we look for? Grit. Hard work. Holding down a job while studying. So if someone presents with a manner of speaking and “air” that implies they won’t cut it, and have never dealt with hardship or hard work, they’ll be disadvantaged. Are we actively seeking a candidate pool that represents the population? Absolutely. Does this mean people have to perform not just have a private education? Yes.

But I don’t think a private education disadvantages. Does an eton child have a harder time of getting through interviews? Maybe. But not when they’re taught upward mgmt, persistence. And time and time again I see at first glance they are put “on par” initially with state school kids. But then you start to see what they’ve been taught that is life skills and they are more persistent, present their relevant capabilities more clearly, more persistent (again) more likely to negotiate on salary, more likely to be better at dealing with senior mgmt than state school graduates. And more likely to look out for themselves and not just be taken advantage of in the workforce.

The takeaway? Teach your kid the above and they’ll go far regardless. Do they need a private school education if you teach them this? No. Give them a flat deposit instead. But give them confidence and risk taking capabilities. That’s the actual key to it all.

And yes - people game the system. Private to 5th form then sixth form state colleges. That’s partly how some sixth forms get such good results. Similarly, the private schools are bringing in 6th form girls, international kids, and scholarships for underprivileged postcodes for a reason.
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SW11er
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Re: Does being privately educated mean discrimination at job interviews?

Postby SW11er » Wed Aug 03, 2022 6:32 am

Hanleymoore, I am a little surprised by a few of the comments. It’s interesting you think that upward management, being more likely to negotiate on salary, and more likely to be able to deal with senior management as key attributes for school leavers/graduates.

I do however agree that grit, hard work, confidence and some risk taking ability are important.

I still think for first jobs - picking the right job not the right salary is important. For me it would be a red flag if someone negotiated over salary at first hurdle. Back yourself and prove your self and start humble. If you have another better offer in the table of course be open about that. I also prefer people who would manage downwards and are used to working with a diverse group of people as a priority over those that can manage upwards.

In my experience I have found more of those attributes in state school children. I have come across too many entitled public school children - something that goes beyond confidence - that has meant over the years I have had more success recruiting state school children. I think confidence/entitlement is a fine line to tread.

Just for context, I am not a Mayfair recruiter - but work in Banking for a mid -sized European Bank - so targets may be different.
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TFP
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Re: Does being privately educated mean discrimination at job interviews?

Postby TFP » Wed Aug 03, 2022 3:22 pm

In the workplace, I suppose, it is conceivable that, especially at firms which have quotas [e.g. KPMG has committed to "29% working-class representation by 2030"], private schooling might confer no real advantage, maybe even a disadvantage, when it comes to getting your foot in the door but still go on to confer a significant advantage when it came to progressing further up the hierarchy. Notably, in the UK civil service there's something almost like a fast stream within the fast stream, dominated by the privately educated, e.g. someone like Simon Case who Boris Johnson made head of the Civil Service, in terms of networks and so on he is as pure an example of 'old school tie' as you can imagine, it'd be almost impossible for someone like that to come up through the state system. see https://assets.publishing.service.gov.u ... yrinth.pdf.
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