Proportion of lawyers educated at public school far outstrips national average

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  • Of course this is regressive in that the 'best' talent that gains access to the law firms is based on what an individuals parents earn, not on how good or otherwise an indivudal is. The actual 'best' talent doesn't get a look in and thus the whole of the legal profession is less talented than it could be. Lawyers must be so thankful that it is the bankers that have gained the bad publicity recently. Let us not forget, however, that behind every banking deal that exploded and lead to the huge losses now being paid for by the poor/disabled/children there is a law firm that put the documents together at £500 per hour.

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  • And, of course, if one looks at the proportion of Oxbridge graduates at Magic Circle firms/Chambers, the correlation is virtually absolute. Is that a bad thing? Can you blame the top firms for only picking the best talent?

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  • I went to a state school and was fortunate enough to attend a university which traditionally skews towards private school applicants. I had a shock at how much more of a sophisticated approach private school students had towards learning compared to me. By enlarge, state schools are second rate in my view.

    However, whilst the private school students clearly had a "head start", I soon raised my game and ended up gaining a strong degree classification. Ultimately, I don't think it's fair to pre-judge an individual based on their secondary school - if somebody has achieved a top grade at an elite university then that's all that should really count. The mode of secondary education is irrelevant and is merely indicative of hereditary wealth.

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  • The world has gone mad.
    Has it not ocurred to anyone that 11 year old children don't get much say in what type of school they go to?
    There are many talented people in the state system with wealthy parents - when people start realising life is about choices and people can make their own choices, society will benefit.

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  • I am a senior partner and I have never selected someone for a job because they did, or did not, attend a "posh" school. My criteria has always been to select the best candidate and their school has never come into it - simple as that. And yes, I was privately educated ...

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  • The average A Level grades at leading private schools are well over three A's. A pupil that does not get three A's at those schools is - barring some illness or personal tragedy - dim. The average A level grades at many state schools are less than three C' (and many pupils will have dropped out after GCSE's).

    Equally, one does not have to be particularly exceptional to get into Oxbridge. Of course there are exceptional people there, but there are also many students there who are really rather average, and law firms in particular are full of them. They are not stupid, but they could have an IQ as low as 115 and be very far from Newtonian.

    Life isn't fair. It never has been and never will be. Outcomes in life are massively dependent on circumstances and luck. To deny this fact is despicable.

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  • Of course the same will also be true of the medical profession, the accounting profession, FTSE 100 chief execs etc.

    'Progressive' education policies have destroyed English state education and now they are intent on destroying it in Scotland and Northern Ireland too.

    The future does not belong to those who see the world the way Tony Crosland did. It belongs to millions of Indian, Chinese and Koreans who learn their 3 R's in education systems that impose discipline, competition and academic values. The bankrupt British left can moan and whinge all they like about public shcoolboys, but they are nothing compared to the tsunami that has been unleashed by globalisation.

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  • "By enlarge, state schools are second rate in my view."
    Oh the IRONY.
    Nonsense.
    Private or state, it makes no difference. Perhaps (perhaps) the privatedly educated are more confident, but that's probably largely down to their parents.
    At university I think state school pupils had a distinct advantage over privately educated peers, who were used to being spoon fed information by mater/nanny/teacher/expensive private tutor.
    State school pupils should stop worrying and just be glad their parents didn't blow 5 figures on what they could have got for free.

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  • It's simple.
    On the whole, private school candidates are better than most of their state school counterparts(sweeping statement, because of course we all know the foppish, plum in throat moron who got a job in the city to prove the exception to the rule).
    However, the point stands. Why should firms be the ones to suffer by socially engineering the industry to be more open by appointing less talented candidates?
    Look to the standard of state education, not the firms.

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  • Brioche - having studied in both throughout my secondary education, I can tell you state education is way off the mark.
    Don't just look at the one or two candidates per year that get 4 As at A-level. Look at the thousands who don't make 5 Cs at GCSE.
    As opposed to private schools with a 70+% A rate at A-level across all students.
    And coupled with that, the things you learn outside of the classroom are worlds apart.
    I can see the chip on your shoulder from here and no doubt a smouldering defence of the state system will follow.

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