Cambridge Missing State Targets

31 March 2011, 14:16 | Updated: 31 March 2011, 16:05

New figures show not enough students from state schools are going to Cambridge University.

According to The Higher Education Statistics Agency, 59.3% of full-time first degree undergraduate students starting at Cambridge last year were from state schools.

The benchmark target for Cambridge University is 70.4%.

Across the country almost a third of UK universities are admitting fewer state-school educated pupils than expected, the figures show.

Overall, 88.8% of 2010's degree entrants at all UK universities were from state schools.

A Cambridge University spokesperson said: "The University of Cambridge remains determined to ensure that it admits the best and brightest students regardless of their background, and invests significant time and resources in outreach activity with under-represented groups to make this a reality.  
From 2012 the University will offer one of the most extensive and flexible packages of financial support in the UK.

In particular students will be able to choose whether they wish to take financial support in the form of a fee waiver or a maintenance bursary, allowing them to tailor support to their own needs.
The University has also committed to spending an extra £1 million to expand Widening Participation work, which aims to help raise the attainment and aspiration of state school pupils.

This is in addition to the £2.25 million a year which we already spend on outreach activities."

Recently, Cambridge University announced that it wants to charge the maximum permitted £9,000 a year in tuition fees from next year.

The University is now waiting to hear from the government if it will be allowed to charge that amount.

Previously, the government has said that institutions will only be allowed to charge up to £9,000 a year in "exceptional circumstances", however so far more than 20 English universities have declared they intend to.