Private Schools ‘Not Lead To Happier Life’


Children who attend private schools might not necessarily lead happier lives when they are adults compared with pupils from state-run establishments.

This comes from a study published in Cambridge Journal of Education, which began looking at teenagers in 2004.

Researchers from University College London (UCL) looked at the data of these 15,770 youngsters over the last 18 years, measuring life satisfaction at 20 and 25 years old and mental health at 14, 16 and 25.

They found there is no evidence to suggest an improvement in mental health or life satisfaction in those privately educated or vice versa.

One of the researchers, sociologist Dr Morag Henderson was reported as saying: “Although school resource in greater in private schools, the academic stress students face might be too and so we see each force cancelling the other out.”

While the paper concluded there is “no additional advantage of private schooling with respect to mental health and life satisfaction” for those born in 1989/1990, this might differ for school-age children during the pandemic.

It recognised nearly two-fifths of the country suffered from higher levels of distress because of Covid-19, and suggested those who attended private school over the last couple of years might have been able to access more mental health support than those at state schools.

According to official figures published in the Daily Mail, the number of referrals to NHS Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services between April and October 2021 was 52 per cent higher than the year before. Emergency referrals to crisis care teams also increased by 28 per cent between 2019 and 2021.

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