A new study found that students who graduated from private schools earn around £4,500 more an average than their counterparts who studied in state schools, after only 3 years in to their careers. The reports discovered that just 6 months after being employed in a high profile job role, employees who graduated from private institutes tend to earn £1,300 more on average than state schools graduate employees in same job roles, with an yearly income of £24,066 as compared to £22,735.
Rising pay gap
At the three and a half year mark, the income gap for employees from both sides tend to rise to £4,450. An average employee with private education usually earns about £36,036 at this stage, which is 14 per cent higher than his/her state school educated peer, who would earn approximately £31,586.
The findings and figures were released recently in a new study conducted by the Sutton Trust, an educational charity in the UK aiming to better social mobility, and upReach, an establishment helping graduates from underprivileged backgrounds to get best jobs. The report claims that private school education usually has a direct and instant effect on an employees’ salary progression. Most of the jobs which are influenced by this are the ones in the national statistics socio-economic category, such as scientists, engineers, higher education teachers, psychologists, pharmacists, solicitors, economists, accountants etc.
Do graduates from state schools get good jobs?
The new report validates what previous studies have found that graduate students from state schools and less privileged backgrounds have lower probability to start high-status and elite careers, like financial services & law, even though they perform equally, if not better, at university. The latest study claims that the prejudice continues in the salary packages, even after they are able to land top jobs.
Sir Peter Lampl, chairman of the Sutton Trust & the Education Endowment Foundation, said “We know that graduates from less privileged backgrounds are under-represented in the top professions, but today’s research shows that they face a disadvantage when it comes to pay progression, too. This new research shows us how vital it is that firms do more to improve social mobility through their recruitment practices. Enabling greater access to a wider pool of diverse talent will deliver real benefits for employers and employees alike.”
Value of non-academic skills
The research states that half of the salary difference may be rationalised by variables like the type of institution the graduates attended for higher education or prior educational accomplishments. However, there are various other factors that need to be taken into consideration. The report noted “A plausible explanation is that non-academic skills such as articulacy or assertiveness could play an important role in accessing high-status jobs and career progression once in employment.”
The study was done based on data available from NIESR (National Institute for Economic and Social Research) on the continuous influence of social background on graduate pay and career development.
Henry Morris, founder of upReach, commented: “Today’s research tells us that Britain’s social mobility challenge does not end on a graduate’s first day of work. Despite doing as well academically, the pay of graduates from more privileged backgrounds rises more quickly than their peers. By working in partnership with organisations like upReach, employers can seize the social mobility opportunity for their own, and society’s, benefit.”
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