GCSE results adds to the evidence that children in poverty are less likely to succeed

Today’s publication of the 2019 GCSE results reveal a marked difference in grades between rich and poor pupils.

The results show that pupils who are better off are nearly twice as likely to achieve good passes for GCSE English and Maths.1

In response, Rachael Saunders, Education Campaign Director of Business in the Community, said: 

"It's great that the achievements of young people have been recognised and that there is an overall improvement in the pass rate. However, it's alarming that poorer pupils are nearly twice as likely to leave school without good English and maths grades as those who are well off. Four million children live in poverty in the UK2 and this adds to the evidence that children that grow up in poverty are less likely to succeed at school and work.

“We need a system that gives every pupil the chance to succeed in the future. Our playing fair toolkit for schools and businesses highlights the need to reduce inequality and for a curriculum that gives all pupils all the skills they need for today and tomorrow's workforce.”


  1. GCSE subjects reveal stark unfairness faced by disadvantaged pupils; Teach First; available at teachfirst.org.uk
  2. Child Poverty Facts and Figures; Child Poverty Action Group; available at cpag.org.uk

Media contact
Cathy Beveridge, media and external affairs manager, Business in the Community
Tel: 07776 181945
Email: Cathy.Beveridge@bitc.org.uk