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Pupillage numbers have plummeted for a third year running for 2010-11, giving less than 27 per cent of Bar Professional Training Course (BPTC) students a chance of securing a job, according to Bar Standards Board (BSB) research.
The Bar Barometer publication reveals that only 446 first six pupillages were registered in 2010-11, down from 460 in 2009-10, showing a drop of 3 per cent.
Second six pupillages also fell by almost 4 per cent, decreasing from 495 to 477.
Meanwhile, 1,618 students were enrolled onto the full-time and part-time BPTC, and in 2009-10 1,509 students enrolled on the full-time course.
In a statement from the Bar Council a spokesperson said: “The figures indicating the number of students enrolled on the BVC in 2009-10 are presented in a slightly different format from those online, which include part-time students, for example. The figures were sourced from different reporting mechanisms so they represent fluctuation in student numbers which occur at different times of year due to new enrolments and deferrals.”
The news follows the number of BPTC applications falling for the first time in three years for 2011-12 (4 November 2011).
Figures decreased from 3,100 applicants in 2010-11 to 3,016 for the next academic year, revealing a decline of around 3 per cent. This followed a growth in the number of applicants by almost 5 per cent between 2008-09 and 2009-10, and 16.7 per cent between 2009-10 and 2010-11.
Elsewhere the survey revealed that more women than men achieved pupillage in 2009-10, with a 48.5 and 40 per cent gender split.
The results for 2009-10 further showed that 72.5 per cent of pupils were from a white ethnicity background, while a mere 15.5 per cent were from black and minority ethnic backgrounds. There was no data for 12.2 per cent of pupils.
The figures also showed that almost 25 per cent of pupils studied at Oxbridge, while 46 per cent attended Russell Group universities.
Meanwhile 52 per cent of pupils attended a state school; 35 per cent attended a fee-paying school and 13 per cent chose not to disclose where they went to school.