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King’s leads ranking as the Russell Group university with the smallest percentage of students from disadvantaged areas

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According to statistics published in the UCAS 2017 end of year report, which was released this Thursday, the university access gap has widened all over the country, with students from privileged backgrounds being ten times more likely to attend a Russel Group university and the number of students from disadvantaged backgrounds falling to upsetting lows.

King's lead the ranking as the Russell Group university with the lowest percentage of students from the most disadvantaged areas, with only 3.5 percent, or 70 of 1,975 18-year-old applicants in 2017, being from the most disadvantaged fifth of areas.

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source: UCAS

A King’s spokesperson told TES: ‘King’s College London has developed a clear and ambitious programme of widening participation activity to meet our vision to be the most inclusive Russell Group institution by 2029. We take a holistic approach to admissions, considering learners’ backgrounds, contexts and individual experiences when making offers.

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"We have consistently met the milestones we commit to with the Office for Fair Access and in the past five years we have made significant progress in recruiting students from state schools (up from 70 per cent to 75 per cent), students from BME backgrounds (up from 38 per cent to 48 per cent) and areas of high levels of deprivation.

"Individual learners achieving while facing challenging circumstances may not be classified as in the lowest POLAR quintile [the measure used by UCAS]. For a number of years, King’s has used alternative indicators which provide a more nuanced understanding."