Indian Children: Highest Performers in UK Schools


Why do many Indian and Chinese teenagers outperform their peers? According to this report, the secret is parenting.

South Asians make up only 5.5% of England and Chinese only 0.7% (2011 UK Census), however, Indians and Chinese teenagers are the highest achievers by the time they reach 16 years-old and sitting in their GCSE exams.

According to the findings from the CentreForum’s Education in England annual report, at the age of five, Indian children and those mixed with white and Asian heritage are the highest performing in school, followed by white British students. Chinese children ranked eighth in the list of ethnic groups, however, Chinese students overtake Indian students at 16 years-old.

So why are so many Indians and Chinese students outperforming their other classmates? No, they are not simply “smarter”, the reason is because of how they are raised and parented. The findings of this study reveals the increasing gap between white children at the age of 16 and there are few common reasons that can be utilized to see academic success amongst your children:

“Bangladeshi and Pakistani children rise up the rankings between their early years and 11-years-old. Chinese pupils achieve on average two grades higher in every subject at GCSE compared to white British pupils. The study found that 73% of Chinese students in English schools were achieving eight good GCSE passes compared to 37% of white British pupils; Indians ranked shortly below the 70% mark”.

High levels of aspiration, good parenting self-control and self-confidence are key for children to do well in their education and in their professional career. With 10 years as a statistician at the Department for Education, the report’s co-author states:

What you need as well as aspiration is a set of concrete ideas and behaviours about how you support your child to pursue aspiration; it is know about how to make it more likely to happen. Talking to your children about school gives them a message that school is important and you care about their work”.

According to the report’s analysis, parents play a critical role in their child’s academic career. Even though there is still a long way to go for the education system to perform on a world class standard, a parent’s investment and engage ment with their children can improve their child’s success dramatically.

Briana Bell