A major analysis of children born in the first two years of the millennium suggests that social class remained the biggest barrier to success at school. Despite billions spent attempting to boost social mobility, academics found the gap between rich and poor pupils widened throughout early education.
Children from poor backgrounds fall behind other pupils after just two years of school. Children of parents in professional and managerial jobs were around eight months ahead of those with parents who were long-term unemployed. A stable home environment and good parenting had an impact on children’s early education, but this was not enough to explain the differences.