UK: Study reveals extent of Oxbridge divide

Four schools and one sixth-form college sent more pupils to Oxford and Cambridge between them over three years than 2,000 schools and colleges across the UK, according to a new study that analyses university admissions from individual schools, writes Jeevan Vasagar for The Guardian.

Westminster, Eton, St Paul's, St Paul's girls school and Hills Road sixth-form college, a Cambridge state school, produced 946 Oxbridge entrants from 2007-09, the study by the Sutton Trust finds. In the same period, there were 2,000 schools and colleges that sent two or fewer pupils to Oxbridge, producing 927 in total.

The difference in these schools' success rates is driven mainly by gaps in achievement at A-level, but some schools do better at gaining entry to university than others with similar exam results. The analysis is published as the Office for Fair Access, a government watchdog, vets universities' plans to charge fees higher than £6,000 a year. It will announce next week which have been approved.
Full report on the Guardian site

Meanwhile, Sean Coughlan writes for the BBC that admissions figures from the Higher Education Statistics Agency and individual universities show that youngsters from London and south-east England are more likely to gain places at England's top universities than their northern counterparts.
Full report on the BBC News site