Knowledge and Resource Hub
13 December 2018

Equity in education: Breaking down barriers to social mobility

The report from the OECD compares longitudinal data on 15 year old students’ academic performance across OECD countries to identify the policies and practices that can help disadvantaged students succeed academically and feel more engaged at school.  In all the participating countries, socio-economic status had a large influence on students’ performance in science, reading and mathematics. However, performance differences between advantaged and disadvantaged students have narrowed over time on average across OECD countries and in many individual countries. High performance and more positive attitudes towards schooling among disadvantaged 15-year-old students were strong predictors of success in higher education and working in a higher-status job than one’s parents. The report also identifies the policies and practices that can help disadvantaged students succeed academically and feel more engaged at school.