Oxford University reports record number of state school admissions

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The figure includes nearly 400 students who initially missed their grades under Ofqual's controversial algorithm

The University of Oxford has accepted record numbers of state school undergraduates to start this term.

Around 68% of new students starting on 6 October have a state education background compared with 62% last year.

It comes despite "the significant challenges of the educational disruption" caused by the "A-level results upheaval", the university said.

The university added that the number boosted its "long-standing commitment to address educational inequality".

'Delighted'

The figures, released by the university, show that 1899 of nearly 2800 undergraduates arriving for the Michaelmas term will have been state educated.

This includes nearly 400 students who had initially missed their grades under Ofqual's controversial algorithm, which was used after exams were cancelled.

Earlier this month, Cambridge University revealed that the proportion of state school students starting this autumn would reach a record high after it increased its intake amid the grading upheaval.

The figures also suggest the gap between students from the most and least socio-economically advantaged areas entering the university has closed, from 4.3:1 last year to 2.9:1 in 2020.

It comes after the Government called on universities to prioritise students from disadvantaged backgrounds for admission "where possible" following the U-turn on A-level grades.

The Opportunity Oxford residential programme - designed to increase offers made to students coming from schools, colleges, or neighbourhoods which do not traditionally send many students to Oxford - has also welcomed its first cohort of 100 students this year, with three others having deferred places for 2021.

Professor Louise Richardson, University of Oxford vice-chancellor, said: "We are delighted by the results of the concerted efforts across the university to identify talented students from a broad range of backgrounds who are passionate about their subject."

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