29% of our founding cohort have at least one widening participation flag. For those who don’t work in admissions, this means that 29% of our students received free school meals (FSM), have spent time in care, or experienced another form of significant disadvantage.
Specifically, 18% of our students were eligible for FSM, compared to 12.5% of the population as a whole. Overall, only around 16% of FSM eligible pupils attend university, compared to more than 75% of those attending private school.
We’re proud of our numbers. And this isn’t coincidence.
We got here because widening participation is central to our admissions process, where we look hard at every student’s background and schooling to make a fair but challenging offer. Back in 2020, this contextual approach to admissions was highlighted by the Office for Students in a report looking at best practice across higher education. In short, we take access seriously.
Enter our newest Board member, Sasha Morgan.
Sasha has been the Director of the UK’s Social Mobility Commission since 2019. The Social Mobility Commission is an advisory government body tasked with assessing and improving social mobility across the UK.
Prior to this position, Sasha held a number of roles in the cultural and political sectors, including an advisor to No. 10. She’s passionate about creative education, and oversees the education work of Bold Tendencies, an Arts Commissioning organisation based in Peckham.
“I’m so pleased to be able to join the Board of the London Interdisciplinary School. I love the way that the team relentlessly challenges itself to keep evolving this genuinely alternative higher education offer and deliver world class student learning, experience and outcomes. LIS excites me because it knows that we can’t expect the next generation of leaders to solve 22nd century problems using 19th century pedagogy and is actively creating a solution.”
– Sasha Morgan
“We’re extremely excited to welcome Sasha onto our Board – her expertise in social mobility will be an enormous contribution to LIS. We’re certainly proud of what we’ve achieved so far, but there’s more to do. We want to set the pace for widening participation in UK higher education. And Sasha will help us do this.”
– Chris Persson, Executive Chairperson