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EDITIONS
Friday, 30 June, 2000, 23:52 GMT 00:52 UK
Oxford reaches out to state schools
Oxford uiversity
The university says its doors are open to applications
Oxford University has written to state secondary schools in the United Kingdom inviting applications from their most gifted pupils.


We hope that more applications from state school pupils will mean more offers to state school pupils

Vice-chancellor Colin Lucas
Stung by accusations of elitism, the university has sent a four-page brochure to every school with a sixth form detailing how it is attempting to recruit more students from state schools.

At present a majority of students at Oxford are former private school pupils and university authorities have been pressed to increase the representation of state school pupils.

The brochure, Access to Oxford, explains the admissions system and provides information about open days and summer schools designed to help young people who are considering applying for places at the university.

Laura Spence

The university had been criticised in the wake of the rejection of a state school pupil, Laura Spence, who subsequently was offered a scholarship for Harvard University in the United States.

The brochure includes a letter from the university's vice-chancellor, Colin Lucas, in which he emphasises his commitment to recruiting the best students, "regardless of social or educational background".

"The key challenge for us is to persuade more suitably qualified young people from state schools to apply," he says.

"Clearly we can only select from those candidates who apply to us, but we hope that more applications from state school pupils will mean more offers to state school pupils."

There is also a message from the head of undergraduate admissions, Jane Minto, who says that the university is seeking to encourage a wider range of students to consider applying to Oxford.

"We are working hard to increase the number of applications we receive from well-qualified students at schools and colleges which have no tradition of applying to Oxford."

See also:

29 Jun 00 | UK Education
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