A government report by the U.K.’s Social Mobility Commission revealed that children of Chinese descent in the U.K. significantly outperform their white British peers across various aspects of education and career prospects.
Education: Chinese students on free school meals were found to have outperformed their peers of other ethnicities at age 11 and even performed better than the average student who does not receive free school meals, according to The Telegraph.
In 2021 and 2022, 76% of Chinese children on free school meals achieved the expected standard in reading, writing and math at age 11, surpassing the national average of those non-eligible for free school meals.
While young Chinese students excel, the report also noted that children from Bangladeshi, Indian and Black African backgrounds also tend to perform well academically, while white British, Black Caribbean, Roma children and travelers of Irish heritage perform less favorably.
Job market: Once they enter the job market, Chinese people tend to earn more than their white British peers. The average Chinese person reportedly earns about 18.20 pounds (approximately $22.69) per hour in their late 20s as compared to around 15.50 pounds (approximately $19.32) for a white British person with a similar professional background.
Some ethnic groups, such as Black Caribbean, Black African and Pakistani, are more likely to face unemployment compared to white British young people from similar socio-economic backgrounds.
Need for new approaches: The report emphasizes that social mobility outcomes depend not only on parents’ careers and individuals’ education but also on the regions where children grow up. The study suggests the need for new approaches “to ensure equality of opportunity,” given the disparities in educational success and labor market outcomes among different ethnic groups.