THE proportion of young adults going to university has topped 50 per cent for the first time.
Official figures show 50.2 per cent of those aged 17 to 30 in England participated in higher education in 2017/18.
The proportion of young adults going to university has topped 50 per cent for the first time[/caption]
But they came as Education Secretary Gavin Williamson accused universities of not doing enough to recruit disadvantaged students — despite £1billion spent on schemes to widen access.
He said: “A lot are not showing the evidence as to the impact it’s having.
“I’m not going to be timid in naming and shaming universities that continuously lag behind, and aren’t willing to make the changes that are required.”
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Professor Julia Buckingham, president of Universities UK, said: “Eighteen-year-olds from the most disadvantaged areas in England are more likely to go to university than ever before. But we know there is more work to do.”
The figures, which cover universities and colleges, show the 2017/18 participation rate among women was 56.6 per cent, while for males it was 44.1 per cent.
Passing the 50 per cent mark fulfilled a pledge 20 years ago by PM Tony Blair to get half of young people into higher education.
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