Education and the 2019 general election

  • Despite gaining many traditionally Labour-supporting seats, the Conservatives continue to represent parts of England with lower average levels of childhood poverty, higher proportions of young people in education and employment, and higher average levels of life satisfaction among local populations.
  • However, when we look at the swing from Labour to the Conservatives, a different picture emerges. Areas with the largest swings tended to have high levels of childhood poverty, low academic attainment at secondary school and beyond, and low levels of participation in higher education. Broadly similar patterns were evident for Brexit Party support where they fielded candidates.
  • Statistically speaking, then, the Conservatives continue to be the party of more affluent and contented parts of England. But the surge in support that they enjoyed during last week's election came largely from apparently 'left behind' areas with much lower levels of affluence and educational success.

Figure 1: Political, social and educational indicators by local authority area
Sources: UK government (for a full list, see our previous analysis); BBC News; SchoolDash analysis.
  1. Results from each constituency were compiled from BBC News. In order to enable comparisons with the other data sets in this analysis, each constituency was then associated with its corresponding local authority (LA) area, and average election results for each LA calculated. Most constituencies lie within one and only one LA, but where this was not the case it was associated with the LA that is linked to the largest number of schools in the constituency. Chorley was omitted from this analysis because its Member of Parliament is the Speaker of the House of Commons and neither the Conservatives nor Labour fielded candidates there.

 

MARK II: What we learned from over three million primary test results

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