Russell group offers: hype and reality

Eddie Playfair

Comprehensive sixth form college: 162     Selective 16-19 free school: 100

I wrote here about the misleading use of Russell group offer data to try to demonstrate the impact of a new 16-19 free school in our area. The fact that 100 students from the highly selective London Academy of Excellence had at least one Russell group offer was seen by some as a triumph worthy of national press coverage.

While not wishing in any way to minimise this achievement, I pointed out that in the previous year, 137 students from Newham sixth form college (NewVIc) has Russell group offers and 60 of them had subsequently progressed to Russell group institutions, a big improvement on the previous year.

We now have the data for this year and are in a position to compare like with like. With only 4 applicants still to hear about potential Russell group offers, 162 NewVIc applicants have…

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