Educational disadvantage in the UK: continuity and change in urban areas. The Plowden Report (1967) to the National Equality Panel Review (2010)

29th September 2010 : 00:00 - 00:00

Category: Conference

Location: Seminar Room A

Convener: John Furlong
Speakers: George and Teresa Smith Department of Social Policy and Social Work, University of Oxford and Tom Smith Managing Director, OCSI Ltd.

This Seminar is the first in the Cities Seminar Series on Educational Improvement and Equity

The seminar will be preceded by tea at 4.30 and followed by a drinks reception at 6.30.

Further information: Will Baker


In a recent article (Forum: vol 49, 1&2) we traced the position of Britain’s first ‘Educational Priority Areas’ (small areas of concentrated educational disadvantage) over the 40 years since the national Plowden Report which had first proposed them. Continuity and change in their relative positions against each other and national standards suggested a number of significant trends. While they all remained disadvantaged overall, there were some very substantial changes. In this study we looked at only the four original small EPA areas in England. So how does this play elsewhere? In this presentation we will extend and update this analysis to cover a broader national picture of what has happened to such disadvantaged areas in recent years. This will include data on the Oxford area in recent years.

George Smith was until 2008 a University Reader in Social Policy and Research Fellow at Green College, Oxford. He co-directed the Social Disadvantage Research Centre with Professor Michael Noble. His fields of interest include urban disadvantage, social security, poverty/low income and education, and the measurement of deprivation at the local level. Teresa Smith was Head of the Department of Social Policy and Social Work for eight years, 1997-2005. Her main research interests are in the fields of community, disadvantage and the family, and the socio-spatial mapping of disadvantage and services for families and young children. Tom Smith is Managing Director of Oxford Consultants for Social Inclusion (OCSI), a company specialising in the analysis of social data for local authorities and central government.