Will Britain Ever Have a Black Prime Minister?


Will Britain Ever Have a Black Prime Minister?

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We've had 54 British prime ministers to date,

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going back almost three centuries.

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And all of those prime ministers have something in common.

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They are all white.

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I'm David Harewood, a British TV and film actor,

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and I intend to find out why.

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And to ask just how socially mobile is Britain today?

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Could anyone, despite their background

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or the colour of their skin, become leader of our country?

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What if you were not born into privilege?

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What if you were black, state educated,

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and from a low-income household?

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To work this out, we'll be carrying out

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a comprehensive analysis of the data,

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allowing us to make a unique probability calculation.

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The odds from the start are stacked against them.

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-Yeah, right from the start, literally.

-Yeah.

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'I'll find out just how difficult it would be

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'for a black person to rise up through the British system,

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'break into a top profession...'

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It's a sea of white faces.

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'..and, ultimately, make it to the country's very top job.'

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What are the chances of Britain having a black prime minister?

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Our journey to the very top of the British system starts,

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as it did for me,

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here in this Birmingham hospital.

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BABY CRIES

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Right, come on.

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We've just had word that there's a brand-new arrival,

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it's just inside this room,

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so I'm going to go and speak to the new couple

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and this brand-new child. Come on.

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-Hello. How you? I'm David.

-Nice to meet you.

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-What's your name?

-Abel.

-Abel. And you are?

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-Janette.

-Janette.

-Janette?

-Who's this one?

-Robel.

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Robel, look at him!

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Beautiful! Beautiful!

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Abel and Janette are immigrants from Eritrea, east Africa,

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who came to the UK three years ago.

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What do you hope that he will achieve here in England?

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What kind of job would you like him to do?

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-Doctor.

-Yeah.

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Or movie actor, I don't know.

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Movie actor? Or Prime Minister, that's good ambitions.

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He looks like he's going to be a movie star to me, actually.

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Definitely. He's got that look.

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HE CHUCKLES

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BABY CRIES Do you mind if I pick him up?

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Most parents believe that if your child works hard enough

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and stays out of trouble,

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they'll have a fair chance of success in this country.

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Whether Robel here will have an equal chance

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as his white counterparts to succeed in Britain

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is really what this programme's all about.

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Could he actually dare to be a prime minister of this country?

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What do you think?

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The place has changed so much since I've been here.

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'I was brought up here in Birmingham

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'in a place called Small Heath in the '70s.'

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I sort of grew up in a bit of a bubble, I suppose, here.

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I didn't really venture out very much.

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Didn't really venture out very far, we didn't really have much money,

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so it was a case of make your own fun,

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make your own entertainment.

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Thanks, pal.

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Here it is.

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So this is really the house that I, kind of, grew up in, really.

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I had two brothers and a sister.

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We were very much a working-class family.

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This was very much a working-class area.

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My dad was a lorry driver and my mother worked as well.

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I think my father came here in '58

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and my mother, I think, came here in '62.

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There were lots of adverts across the Caribbean

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saying come to England, the streets are paved with gold.

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The reason why most of the first-generation

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West Indian migrants came here

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was to get better lives, to improve their family, make some money,

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get good jobs.

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When the immigrants arrived, many found themselves positioned

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on the bottom rung of the social ladder,

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occupying mostly working-class jobs.

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I was one of the lucky ones.

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I got a break getting into drama school,

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and then becoming a professional actor, now working in Hollywood.

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But what are the prospects like for today's generation?

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If a young black kid was born here today, and grew up here today,

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what would his chances be of success in modern Britain?

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To calculate what the chance actually are

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of Britain having a black prime minister,

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'we've asked statistician Dr Faiza Shaheen

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'from the Centre for Labour and Social Studies

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'to examine the data and come up with an estimate

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'for the probability of exactly that happening.

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'It's always difficult to predict the future,

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'but she'll be feeding in data from a wide range of sources.

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'She'll also be looking at the particular hurdles black people face

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'if they want to make it to the top.'

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OK, David, so let's start by looking at the economic circumstances

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that black children are growing up in in Britain today.

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The last survey of the mass population in the UK

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was a census in 2011.

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And that found that 40% of black people live in social housing.

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That's one indicator of poverty.

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More recent government statistics

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have found that as many as 45% of all black children,

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so African and black Caribbean, are growing up in poverty.

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That compares to 25% of white children.

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Wow!

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Nearly half of the black children in the country are growing up poor.

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-Yes.

-That's...

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-Shocking.

-The odds from the start are stacked against them.

-Yeah.

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-Right from the start, literally.

-Yeah, yeah.

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OK, so we know that black children are twice as likely

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to be growing up poor than white children.

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And on the flipside, white children are four times more likely

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to live in wealthy households than black children.

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And that disparity has huge consequences,

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because we know wealthy children

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overtake poorer children

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in their development

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very early on in life.

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So by the time they start school,

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the vocabulary of the poorest kids

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lags more than a year behind

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that of a wealthy child.

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That's why poverty is the biggest determining factor in anyone's life.

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Those children growing up in poor households

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-are at a disadvantage from day one.

-Which obviously has a huge impact,

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because it means they're starting education

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-already a huge step behind their white counterparts, really.

-Yep.

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Obviously, there are large numbers of poor white children, too,

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who are just as disadvantaged, if not more so.

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But for black kids, there are other significant factors

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that can impact on their early development.

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Not far from when I grew up, in nearby Edgbaston,

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there's a nursery which specialises

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in helping black children, in particular,

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take their first few tentative steps in life.

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-Hello!

-How are you doing?

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Good, thank you, how are you?

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-Very well, very well.

-Lovely. Nice to meet you.

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-Thank you for having me.

-Welcome to Edgbaston Park Day Nursery.

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'Liz Kerr is the nursery manager.'

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We tend to make sure that we're catering for the specific needs

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of the black African-Caribbean community.

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A lot of the things that we do here

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really go towards pushing expectation levels up.

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A focus, really, on behaviour

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and just getting the children really school ready

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so the school readiness is a big thing here.

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-Right.

-(They're having story time.

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-(Story time?)

-Sorry, preschool.

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I've got a visitor.

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-Preschool, say hello to David.

-CHILDREN:

-Hello, David.

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Beautiful! These are the preschool.

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Hold on, two seconds, I'm just speaking, OK?

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I'll talk to you afterwards.

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So they've had their dinner.

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Because they're getting school ready, they don't sleep.

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'Even at this tender age, Liz says that some of these black children

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'have been singled out in mainstream nurseries

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'and labelled as being problematic and that's why they've come to her.'

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Describe some of the problems that black parents have had elsewhere

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that bring them to your nursery.

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We have four or five children

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who have come from nurseries, mainstream nurseries,

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where parents have told me that the demographic of the nursery

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is predominantly white

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and there have been labels around their particular children

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and I think it's more a lack of understanding in the mainstream

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about how to manage certain behaviours

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if it's not something that they, perhaps, have seen before.

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When I say behaviour,

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really what I am talking about is just personality.

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Put your toys down, please.

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So, a child with lots of energy in a predominantly white setting

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might just come across as a child that's problematic.

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Problematic, naughty, disruptive. Doesn't want to engage in learning.

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CHILD SHOUTS

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I'm aware that, you know, black children,

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black boys, in particular, are very energetic.

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It's important that we don't label those boys who are black

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as problematic or as having behavioural issues

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and we just look at them as children.

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It's all right, don't cry.

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Knowing that these are just boys who have got a lot of energy,

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a lot of personality and we just engage with them appropriately.

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Cos it's a self-fulfilling prophecy, in a sense.

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If you are always told you are this way

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and you're always told you are a problem and you're naughty,

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you go through life just believing that that is who you are.

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At a certain point, it's going to become where you're just like,

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"You know what? I'm just going to be that person then."

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Yeah, go have a look over that side.

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There's been very little research

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into possible labelling of black children at nurseries.

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However, some parents who have children here believe it's an issue.

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Tizai Shaw is a four-year-old boy who his mum says was treated

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as being a problematic child by his previous nursery.

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Rachel, what have been your experiences

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in the mainstream predominantly white nurseries?

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It was OK to start with.

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No problems, great nursery.

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I thought it was good, recommended it.

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He got to about the age of two, he started biting, you know,

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just pushing the boundaries.

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Playing up, kicking, hitting.

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And I used to say to them, "Can't you put him on a time-out,

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"can't you just, you know, talk to him

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"and just know that you can't do that?

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No, thank you. Don't do that.

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They were like, "We've got this new policy

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"where we can't put him on a time-out.

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And I was like, "But that's what I do at home."

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So they'd phoned me, "Tizai's being naughty.

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"Tizai's not being good.

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"He's doing this, he's doing that."

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Not anything else, it was always Tizai this, Tizai that,

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Tizai... And it was just so awful for me it was so stressful

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and I just used to cry cos I didn't know what else to do.

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Rachel says that eventually Tizai was permanently excluded...

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at just three years old.

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Was his behaviour quite boisterous at home, too?

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He's a boisterous child.

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That's just the way he is. He plays with his dad all the time.

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Him and his brother, they are boisterous children.

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Wait, wait, Tizai, please.

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But he wasn't behaving how he was at nursery at home

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because, obviously, he has boundaries.

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Nursery didn't give him those kind of boundaries.

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Some people take it as he's being naughty, he's being out of hand,

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but that's just him being playful.

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Since he's been coming to Edgbaston Day Nursery,

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Tizai's behaviour has been transformed.

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Hi!

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Can I have a hug? Ohhhhh!

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Have you been a good boy?

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You know, I'm really inspired by what I've seen here today,

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particularly talking to Liz.

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The kids that come here seem to flourish in her school

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and that's wonderful.

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What worries me, though, when you think about it,

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all the Tizais that are out there in Britain

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not getting this tailored care, not getting this cultural understanding.

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What kind of start in life are they getting?

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They are being constantly told that they are bad,

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constantly told that their behaviour is inappropriate,

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constantly told they're a problem.

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What kind of start in life are we giving those children?

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If a black person is going to make it to become prime minister

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it's quite likely they will have come

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from a disadvantaged inner-city area like this -

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South London's Elephant and Castle.

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BELL RINGS

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And that presents a challenge to schools like Globe Academy.

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Morning, gentlemen. How are you doing?

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Headmaster Matt Jones is working hard

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to give his many black and ethnic minority pupils

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a fighting chance.

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He's just said something

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and I've heard it from there. Go and sit down.

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Hurry up!

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What are the particular problems

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that face young black kids at this age at school?

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Well, Ark Globe Academy is based in South London,

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Elephant And Castle, which is, you know,

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in the highest 20% for levels of deprivation.

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So you've got your challenges there

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and all the social and economic issues around that.

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We are a very diverse community,

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90% of our community is from black or minority ethnic groups,

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of which 50%-ish are black Caribbean or black African.

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I think some of the issues revolve around aspiration

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and having real positive role models in their community

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to aspire to and to be like.

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I think the other issue is, obviously,

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some low levels of attainment.

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Dual is two, right, like two things coming together.

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School attainment levels, or exam results,

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are obviously a key factor in deciding young people's futures.

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Brainstorming, mind mapping...

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Let's take a look at how well black kids are doing

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throughout their schooling.

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Our statistician Faiza has been looking at pupil test results.

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I've been looking at pupil assessment data

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and breaking it down by ethnicity.

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In this graph, you can see pupil assessment scores

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for those aged seven to 16 years old.

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White people start at this midpoint

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and they maintain that level up to the age of 14.

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Black African and black Caribbean students start at a lower point

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and whilst black Africans maintain their scores,

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black Caribbean performance declines steeply.

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My word, look at that!

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That's pretty stark, isn't it?

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-Yep.

-I mean, that's an incredible decline.

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-Yeah.

-You can't argue with it.

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But that's not the end of the story.

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Between the ages of 14 and 16, black pupils start doing a lot better.

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Both black Caribbean and black African pupils

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see a massive increase in their scores. In fact,

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by the time they come to do GCSEs,

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black African pupils surpass white pupils at age 16.

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That's extraordinary.

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I don't quite get... I can't quite get my head around that.

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Why are they suddenly performing better?

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What's going on there, then?

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I think it's a puzzle, to be honest.

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Research by Professor Simon Burgess from the University of Bristol

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might provide an answer.

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He has uncovered evidence of a shocking explanation

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of the sharp rise in attainment levels

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when black children get to their GCSEs.

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He believes it is linked to the fact

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that those exams are marked by independent examiners.

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When we take GCSEs, of course,

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they are exams that are marked outside of the school.

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They are not marked by your teacher.

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So that's your big chance to show how well you can really do

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in a, kind of, anonymised context.

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So we looked at some data comparing the test scores of pupils in England

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against their teacher assessment.

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For some ethnic groups, we found that the teachers

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systematically underestimated their performance,

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relative to how they did in these remotely marked tests.

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So that suggests to us that some stereotyping is going on -

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that teachers have a view,

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form a view about the likely capabilities of students

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from outside knowledge and that informs the expectations they have

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of students in the classroom

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and the stereotyped view might be that black students

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are not very good in school, and so they tend to under-assess them

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and have lower expectations for their attainment and their progress

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than perhaps they should

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and these stereotypes will interact with the child's motivation

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and therefore they are going to try less hard at school.

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If Professor Burgess is right,

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then there's almost an in-built prejudice

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against black kids within the system,

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where they are being labelled and stereotyped negatively.

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Here at Globe Academy, they are working hard

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to break those stereotypes and to give their pupils

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the tools necessary to succeed at university and in the workplace.

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Perhaps Globe Academy might produce a prime minister one day.

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So, you've got business class here.

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-Let's go and have a look.

-OK.

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-Good morning, guys. How are we doing?

-Morning.

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Does anybody recognise this guy?

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-Yeah.

-Marvellous, marvellous!

0:20:000:20:03

This is, obviously, David Harewood, Hollywood actor

0:20:030:20:05

and he is working with the BBC,

0:20:050:20:07

doing a documentary on social mobility.

0:20:070:20:10

Miss, what are we doing today?

0:20:100:20:11

We are looking at interview practice

0:20:110:20:13

and how can we really prepare to go in confidently to these interviews

0:20:130:20:16

that they are going to carry out after school, to go into workplaces.

0:20:160:20:21

Would you like to have a go?

0:20:210:20:23

Love to. Am I interviewing or being interviewed?

0:20:230:20:25

-You can be the interviewer.

-OK, fine.

0:20:250:20:28

We'll swap the interview. Can we have Michael George, please?

0:20:280:20:31

-Can I be Mr Nasty?

-Yes, please do.

0:20:310:20:34

-Nice to meet you, sir.

-Hello, come in. Sit down.

0:20:340:20:36

'Where they are now is 90% black minority ethnic group.'

0:20:360:20:41

What we are preparing them for is an environment

0:20:410:20:43

that is totally different to that -

0:20:430:20:45

socially, culturally, and in terms of ethnicity.

0:20:450:20:47

Tell me about a time in which you were required

0:20:470:20:49

to produce something to a very, very high standard

0:20:490:20:52

and was there a fixed period to this time?

0:20:520:20:54

That's a very good question, first of all.

0:20:540:20:56

'If you're going to access these type of careers

0:20:560:20:59

'and these type of institutions, you have to perform in a certain way'

0:20:590:21:02

and be able to relate to others from a different ethnic group

0:21:020:21:05

and some people find that difficult.

0:21:050:21:07

Describe a time when effective time management skills

0:21:070:21:11

were key to success.

0:21:110:21:12

OK. So that's a very good question, once again.

0:21:120:21:14

-Erm...

-Thank you. LAUGHTER

0:21:140:21:16

I think that if I didn't put the time and effort...

0:21:160:21:19

'Some people don't accept

0:21:190:21:20

'that you have to adapt your behaviour based on context'

0:21:200:21:24

and that can be a challenge for young black students

0:21:240:21:27

growing up in south London.

0:21:270:21:28

Yeah, I thought you were very, very confident.

0:21:280:21:31

Be careful of the repetition of "That is a good question,"

0:21:310:21:34

because then it does become just a tad insincere.

0:21:340:21:37

-Thank you.

-Thank you very much. Thank you.

0:21:370:21:39

You know, what's become clear to me today

0:21:460:21:49

is just how critical the school stage in life is

0:21:490:21:51

if children from black or mixed ethnicity backgrounds

0:21:510:21:54

are ever going to progress up the social ladder.

0:21:540:21:57

What this school is doing is giving these kids a springboard

0:21:570:22:01

onto, hopefully, brighter and better futures.

0:22:010:22:04

But if any one of these black kids

0:22:070:22:09

is going to make it to prime minister,

0:22:090:22:11

the chances are they'll need to go to a top university.

0:22:110:22:14

And, for that, they'll good A-level grades.

0:22:140:22:17

So, what are the chances of black pupils getting the required grades?

0:22:210:22:24

Faiza has been studying the A-level exam results data.

0:22:280:22:31

OK, David. To get into a top university,

0:22:320:22:35

you need to get three As or more at A level.

0:22:350:22:39

I'm already out of the equation.

0:22:390:22:40

I think I scraped two, I think. I can't remember.

0:22:400:22:44

The chances of a black pupil getting three As

0:22:470:22:49

-is just four in 100 or

-4%. What?

0:22:490:22:54

The chances of a white pupil

0:22:550:22:57

getting three As at A level is...

0:22:570:23:00

Double the chance.

0:23:000:23:02

But, for those who went to private schools,

0:23:030:23:06

and, statistically speaking, they are mostly white,

0:23:060:23:09

the chance increases dramatically

0:23:090:23:12

to 28 in 100, or 28%.

0:23:120:23:16

-Wow!

-28% of those that go to private school will get three As or more

0:23:160:23:21

-at A level.

-That's just stunning.

0:23:210:23:23

I mean, that's...

0:23:230:23:25

Those people who can afford to send their kids to private school,

0:23:270:23:31

they are already a step ahead, anyway, aren't they?

0:23:310:23:33

I'm not, kind of, angry or bashing the system,

0:23:330:23:36

but these are just fact that speak for themselves.

0:23:360:23:39

The system is almost designed to assist those

0:23:390:23:44

who have an economic advantage.

0:23:440:23:47

In fact, David, if you're a state educated black boy,

0:23:470:23:51

you're more likely to be excluded from school than to get the three As

0:23:510:23:55

that you need to get into a top university.

0:23:550:23:58

That's...

0:24:000:24:02

staggering, really.

0:24:020:24:03

And that speaks to... expectation, discrimination,

0:24:030:24:09

stereotypes, everything.

0:24:090:24:11

You are more likely to be excluded than get three As.

0:24:110:24:14

It's deeply troubling.

0:24:140:24:17

So this is a huge hurdle on that way to being prime minister.

0:24:170:24:21

This one knocks out a lot of black people.

0:24:210:24:24

-There's very few that will jump that hurdle.

-Right.

0:24:240:24:27

You have to beat these huge odds.

0:24:270:24:30

-Yeah.

-Huge!

-Huge odds.

0:24:300:24:31

So getting into a top university is critical for any black person

0:24:390:24:43

aiming to make it to make it to become prime minister.

0:24:430:24:45

And there's one university in particular

0:24:500:24:52

which outshines all the rest when it comes to producing PMs.

0:24:520:24:56

Every prime minister who has won an election since 1937,

0:24:580:25:01

if they went to university, it was Oxford,

0:25:010:25:05

including our previous and current prime ministers,

0:25:050:25:07

David Cameron and Theresa May.

0:25:070:25:09

Today, it's Oxford University's open day

0:25:160:25:19

and I'm meeting young hopeful Aisha,

0:25:190:25:21

a pupil from a South London state school.

0:25:210:25:24

-Hello.

-How are you?

-How are you?

-I'm fine, thank you.

0:25:250:25:29

-Nice to meet you, nice to meet you.

-You, too.

-Shall we go inside? Yeah.

0:25:290:25:32

Brilliant.

0:25:320:25:33

Aisha has done really well in her school,

0:25:330:25:36

making it into their top 10%,

0:25:360:25:39

and she is predicted to get the three As necessary for entry here.

0:25:390:25:42

She has her heart set on studying at Oxford.

0:25:430:25:46

So of all the universities that you could apply to,

0:25:490:25:51

why do you particularly want to come to Oxford University?

0:25:510:25:55

As everyone knows, Oxford University is one of the best in the world.

0:25:550:26:00

If I can get the same grades as someone who goes to Eton or Harrow,

0:26:000:26:06

or even any other, sort of, private college,

0:26:060:26:08

then I should be able to then apply for that same university.

0:26:080:26:13

I feel like I deserve that right,

0:26:130:26:15

especially because it's not so common within, you know,

0:26:150:26:18

-the urban black...

-Environment.

0:26:180:26:22

Yeah. That's what drives me,

0:26:220:26:24

just wanting to sort of go against the odds

0:26:240:26:27

and actually help people like me,

0:26:270:26:30

sort of, break the mould and, you know,

0:26:300:26:33

just get up there in life as well.

0:26:330:26:36

Because there isn't any reason why intelligent young black people

0:26:360:26:39

shouldn't be able to go to one of the best universities in the world.

0:26:390:26:43

That's how I feel, anyway.

0:26:430:26:44

A couple of prime ministers up there.

0:26:530:26:55

Clement Attlee is just on the right and Wilson is on the left.

0:26:550:26:59

You know, I'm really impressed with Aisha.

0:27:010:27:04

What a mature, determined and purposeful young lady.

0:27:040:27:07

She knows exactly what she wants and how to get there.

0:27:070:27:10

We need more young people like her in more elite places like this

0:27:110:27:15

if we're ever going to break through the glass ceiling to success.

0:27:150:27:18

I really hope she gets offered a place.

0:27:180:27:20

Go on, girl!

0:27:220:27:24

-Have you got the university prospectus?

-Erm, no.

0:27:240:27:27

Aisha may be hopeful of getting a place at Oxford, but the truth is,

0:27:270:27:31

being black and state educated,

0:27:310:27:33

the odds are heavily stacked against her,

0:27:330:27:35

as Faiza has been finding out.

0:27:350:27:37

Fortunately, the University of Oxford

0:27:390:27:41

publishes their admissions data and breaks it down by ethnicity.

0:27:410:27:45

So I've been taking a look at that

0:27:450:27:46

and these are the figures, despite big outreach efforts

0:27:460:27:49

being made by the university to attract black students.

0:27:490:27:52

We'd expect to see about 4% of their students

0:27:520:27:57

being black or black mixed race

0:27:570:27:59

if it was to be representative of the broader population.

0:27:590:28:02

But, as you can see, they've been below the mark.

0:28:030:28:06

In 2009, they had a low of 1.5%

0:28:060:28:10

and in 2015, that rose to 2.5%.

0:28:100:28:14

That's still painfully below the representative target of 4%

0:28:140:28:18

and Oxford's not the worst.

0:28:180:28:20

Black students are under-represented in many UK universities.

0:28:200:28:24

Things are improving.

0:28:250:28:27

But as recently as 2012, Oxford and Cambridge universities

0:28:270:28:31

were found to be disproportionately selecting their students

0:28:310:28:34

from just three prestigious private schools

0:28:340:28:36

and two elite sixth form colleges.

0:28:360:28:38

Eton, Westminster, Saint Pauls,

0:28:380:28:40

Peter Symonds College

0:28:400:28:42

and Hills Road College in Cambridge

0:28:420:28:43

were getting as many pupils

0:28:430:28:45

into Oxford and Cambridge

0:28:450:28:46

as 1,800 state schools and colleges

0:28:460:28:50

in England combined.

0:28:500:28:52

Wow!

0:28:520:28:53

That's staggering.

0:28:550:28:57

Those top schools - Eton, Westminster, Saint Pauls -

0:28:570:29:00

these are amongst the most expensive private schools in the country.

0:29:000:29:03

Those are clearly fast tracks into Oxford and Cambridge University.

0:29:030:29:09

And then onwards into the more top jobs,

0:29:090:29:14

and, obviously, on to being prime minister.

0:29:140:29:19

And here's another troubling statistic.

0:29:190:29:21

When black and minority ethnic pupils apply to Oxford

0:29:210:29:25

or those top universities, they are less likely to get in

0:29:250:29:30

than their white counterparts, even when they have the same grades.

0:29:300:29:35

What?!

0:29:360:29:38

I'm just staggered by that.

0:29:400:29:42

I mean, again, that speaks to discrimination.

0:29:420:29:44

It speaks to prejudice.

0:29:440:29:45

A complete lack of understanding of the hurdles,

0:29:470:29:50

of the difficulties that that black child has overcome

0:29:500:29:52

-just to make it to that point.

-Yeah.

0:29:520:29:54

I mean, you would think, given the odds they've faced

0:29:540:29:57

and the odds they've beaten, they'd be more likely to get in

0:29:570:29:59

-because they've shown...

-Tenacity, strength, all of that.

0:29:590:30:04

They've shown the desire,

0:30:040:30:07

a strength of personality to overcome all the hurdles

0:30:070:30:11

that have been thrown at them,

0:30:110:30:12

and then they're still not being given entrance

0:30:120:30:15

into that institution.

0:30:150:30:16

It makes me feel angry, because you think, you know, it's...

0:30:160:30:20

It's not that we are less intelligent,

0:30:210:30:24

it's not that we are less capable.

0:30:240:30:26

It's the fact that there is...

0:30:280:30:30

There is a layer,

0:30:310:30:33

there is a barrier which is that barrier of discrimination and bias.

0:30:330:30:38

Doctor Vikki Boliver from Durham University carried out the research

0:30:420:30:47

into Oxford and other top universities' admissions data.

0:30:470:30:50

She believes it reveals an inherent bias

0:30:500:30:52

within the universities' admissions process.

0:30:520:30:55

The disparity in offer rate

0:30:560:30:58

suggests that black students are being turned away

0:30:580:31:01

in greater numbers than white students,

0:31:010:31:03

even when they are very well qualified

0:31:030:31:05

to enter these universities.

0:31:050:31:06

I think that unconscious bias is likely to be playing a role here.

0:31:090:31:13

Unconscious bias describes the stereotypes

0:31:130:31:16

that exist in our society about different social groups,

0:31:160:31:19

different genders, different ethnic groups,

0:31:190:31:21

that admission selectors hold, that all of us hold

0:31:210:31:23

and have the potential to creep into decision-making.

0:31:230:31:26

It might be that admission tutors have in the back of their minds

0:31:260:31:31

negative stereotypes about black students.

0:31:310:31:34

It might be that they have unconscious thoughts

0:31:340:31:37

about whether somebody will fit in in the environment,

0:31:370:31:40

which, of course, Oxford University

0:31:400:31:42

is quite a white, socially elite environment.

0:31:420:31:44

These things might be at the back of people's minds

0:31:440:31:47

not consciously, but unconsciously.

0:31:470:31:49

The effects of unconscious bias are well known

0:31:510:31:55

and can also have an opposite, positive effect

0:31:550:31:57

on the chances for white, privately educated, middle-class students.

0:31:570:32:02

Part of unconscious bias is that we tend to gravitate towards

0:32:030:32:08

and unconsciously prefer people who are like us.

0:32:080:32:11

So it's quite possible that, to a degree, these admissions tutors

0:32:110:32:15

are recruiting in their own image

0:32:150:32:17

because they have very positive associations

0:32:170:32:19

with people who are like them.

0:32:190:32:21

It's still the case that the vast majority of the tutors

0:32:210:32:24

are white, middle- to upper middle-class British

0:32:240:32:28

and so the values that are celebrated there

0:32:280:32:31

and the cultures that are appreciated there

0:32:310:32:33

are relatively narrow.

0:32:330:32:35

And it's harder, I think, for those institutions

0:32:350:32:38

to value other cultures and other contributions.

0:32:380:32:41

But clearly they need to do that.

0:32:410:32:42

Oxford University's director of admissions declined our request

0:32:480:32:51

to be interviewed for this programme,

0:32:510:32:52

claiming that the issue of under-representation

0:32:520:32:55

of black and minority ethnic groups at the university

0:32:550:32:57

is an old and out of date story.

0:32:570:33:00

We tried again.

0:33:010:33:03

-We asked if

-any

-representative from the university would come forward

0:33:030:33:07

to be interviewed to defend the university's record on this matter.

0:33:070:33:11

We were finally told, "We do not think the premise of your programme

0:33:110:33:15

"is strong enough to warrant an institutional response."

0:33:150:33:18

I think that pretty much speaks for itself.

0:33:210:33:23

-'Someone who

-was

-willing to be interviewed

0:33:290:33:32

'was president of Oxford University's

0:33:320:33:34

'African and Caribbean Society, Cameron Alexander.'

0:33:340:33:38

Where did you go up?

0:33:380:33:40

In Luton. I grew up in Luton,

0:33:400:33:41

in the estate called Tintown.

0:33:410:33:44

Is that a kind of working-class area?

0:33:440:33:45

Yeah. Very working-class, very working-class.

0:33:450:33:47

'Cameron is now in his third year at Oxford.

0:33:500:33:53

'He went to a state school in his hometown of Luton

0:33:530:33:55

'before winning a scholarship

0:33:550:33:57

'to a prestigious sixth form boarding school.

0:33:570:33:59

'He's become quite used to being one of the few black people

0:34:010:34:04

'in a white person's world.'

0:34:040:34:06

So, why do you think that black people

0:34:060:34:10

are under-represented here at Oxford?

0:34:100:34:13

I think it comes down to, like, a lot of structural factors.

0:34:130:34:17

I think if you look at the nature of the education

0:34:170:34:20

that the majority of the black people who might apply

0:34:200:34:23

or might want to apply are receiving,

0:34:230:34:25

it isn't necessarily as good

0:34:250:34:27

and is not necessarily as focused on Oxbridge.

0:34:270:34:29

I think if you look at what Oxbridge are looking for

0:34:290:34:31

in their students, there's a lot of things

0:34:310:34:33

that are more easily accessible within public schools.

0:34:330:34:36

They are looking for kids who have been to, like, talks,

0:34:360:34:38

kids who have engaged with magazines or The Economist

0:34:380:34:41

or different types of things.

0:34:410:34:43

Some things are expensive to engage with, you know.

0:34:430:34:45

If you've got an entirely kind of like monolithic, homogenous professor,

0:34:450:34:50

you know, then why would they know about the nature of inner-city London

0:34:500:34:55

or the nature of estates?

0:34:550:34:56

They wouldn't have known half the hurdles.

0:34:560:34:58

Exactly. They wouldn't have known the hurdles,

0:34:580:35:00

they might not necessarily be engaging

0:35:000:35:02

with what's hard about your path.

0:35:020:35:03

Maybe they are just not resonating with that

0:35:030:35:05

and I think those things do have an impact.

0:35:050:35:07

It's perhaps understandable

0:35:110:35:13

that a white, middle-class Oxford professor

0:35:130:35:15

might fail to fully understand the desires and anxieties

0:35:150:35:18

of inner-city working-class black kids.

0:35:180:35:21

But Cameron believes the problem is more fundamental than that.

0:35:220:35:25

It's not the most damning condemnation ever of Oxford

0:35:270:35:29

to say, "Oxford's a racist institution,"

0:35:290:35:31

or, "Oxford has a cultural preference

0:35:310:35:32

"which is against black people." It's the reality of the situation.

0:35:320:35:35

You know, it's a reality of the history.

0:35:350:35:37

Are you suggesting that Oxford is institutionally racist?

0:35:370:35:40

Yeah.

0:35:400:35:42

I think that's something we should really just, kind of, like,

0:35:420:35:44

just get with and accept and understand

0:35:440:35:47

and say it's something that they are working towards making better.

0:35:470:35:51

But I think, you know, Britain's institutionally racist.

0:35:510:35:54

Oxford's institutionally racist.

0:35:540:35:55

We should engage with it.

0:35:550:35:57

We should say, "Look, Oxford carries a bias."

0:35:570:35:59

Institutionally, it's harder for black people to be here.

0:35:590:36:02

That's a form of systematic racism.

0:36:020:36:03

It's an uncomfortable situation. It's an uncomfortable conversation,

0:36:030:36:06

but we need to embrace that uncomfortable conversation.

0:36:060:36:08

You know, I've been on a really incredible journey

0:36:160:36:18

with this programme and it's really struck me today

0:36:180:36:20

that if you were going to design a system

0:36:200:36:23

that disadvantaged black people at every level from nursery,

0:36:230:36:27

to schooling, to university and on up through the social system...

0:36:270:36:30

..you couldn't actually design it any better.

0:36:310:36:34

And there seems to be this begrudging reluctance

0:36:340:36:37

to acknowledge, dismantle and change that system.

0:36:370:36:40

Maybe there are certain groups that have a vested interest

0:36:430:36:46

in keeping it that way?

0:36:460:36:47

Oh, yeah, here we go. Great title sequences.

0:37:030:37:06

Air and naval forces of the United States

0:37:060:37:07

launched a series of strikes against terrorist facilities...

0:37:070:37:10

Oh, I love this. I love it.

0:37:100:37:12

Fabulous, fabulous, fabulous.

0:37:140:37:15

Oh, here we go.

0:37:150:37:17

(This guy's really good.)

0:37:220:37:24

Sergeant Brody called me.

0:37:240:37:26

You know, there's nothing I like more than staying in of an evening

0:37:260:37:29

and catching up on some of my favourite US drama shows.

0:37:290:37:32

Homeland - what a great show that was.

0:37:320:37:34

You know...

0:37:380:37:40

..when I first started working in America,

0:37:420:37:44

I became acutely aware of just how many great roles

0:37:440:37:47

there were for black actors in the US.

0:37:470:37:49

And I realised it was because, in American society,

0:37:490:37:53

black people do actually occupy powerful and influential roles

0:37:530:37:56

in a way that they just don't here in Britain.

0:37:560:38:00

It's pretty shameful, really, that we should be still so far behind

0:38:010:38:05

and that's not just true in the world of acting.

0:38:050:38:08

It's the same in many of the UK's top industries and professions.

0:38:080:38:12

If a black person is going to make it to prime minister,

0:38:250:38:28

the likelihood is they will need real word experience

0:38:280:38:30

in a top profession or industry.

0:38:300:38:33

So just how many black people are working

0:38:340:38:36

at the top of our key professions and institutions?

0:38:360:38:39

How about the judiciary, the people who implement the law?

0:38:430:38:46

Out of 161 High Court judges, Supreme Court judges,

0:38:460:38:50

Lords Justices of Appeal and heads of division,

0:38:500:38:53

how many of them are black?

0:38:530:38:56

Zero.

0:38:570:38:59

How about those who lead our Armed Forces?

0:38:590:39:01

The people who protect us and under whom our troops serve.

0:39:010:39:04

Out of 133 generals, admirals, and marshalls,

0:39:040:39:07

how many of them are black?

0:39:070:39:10

Zero.

0:39:100:39:12

And how about the media?

0:39:120:39:14

The people who feed us all the news and influence the way we think?

0:39:140:39:17

How many top national newspaper editors,

0:39:170:39:19

broadsheet or tabloid, are black?

0:39:190:39:22

You get the picture now, don't you?

0:39:240:39:27

Many people in modern politics

0:39:280:39:30

come from top jobs in the media or journalism.

0:39:300:39:33

So, I wonder how many black people are working in key positions

0:39:380:39:41

at our biggest public service broadcaster, for example?

0:39:410:39:44

Here in the heart of London,

0:39:450:39:47

where non-whites make up around 40% of the population.

0:39:470:39:50

As I'm working for them, I thought I'd make good use of my BBC pass

0:39:570:40:01

and take a look for myself.

0:40:010:40:02

This is the BBC newsroom, the hub,

0:40:090:40:11

the pumping heart of the BBC's rolling 24-hour news operation.

0:40:110:40:16

It is here where all of the key decisions are made

0:40:170:40:19

about the editorial and creative content

0:40:190:40:22

that we see on our BBC news programmes every day

0:40:220:40:24

and through whose eyes those stories are told.

0:40:240:40:27

Let's have a look and see

0:40:290:40:31

just how many black BBC faces there are busy at work down there.

0:40:310:40:34

Very, very, very white.

0:40:450:40:47

Mainly... Mainly white faces.

0:40:510:40:54

Very, very, very white.

0:40:540:40:56

It's a sea of white faces.

0:41:010:41:02

An ocean of white faces.

0:41:040:41:07

There's a black face just there.

0:41:070:41:10

There's another one.

0:41:100:41:11

Two.

0:41:130:41:15

Two black faces...

0:41:160:41:17

..in a room full of about 300 people.

0:41:190:41:22

It's hideously white, as the former director-general said

0:41:240:41:29

a number of years ago. Obviously, not much has changed.

0:41:290:41:32

Pat Younge is one of the few black people to have made it

0:41:370:41:40

to the highest echelons of the BBC

0:41:400:41:42

when he rose to be chief creative officer.

0:41:420:41:45

He's had a real insider's view

0:41:450:41:47

of the internal structures and hierarchy.

0:41:470:41:49

I've just been down to the BBC newsroom

0:41:530:41:56

and found it to be very white and very middle-class.

0:41:560:42:00

How has the BBC managed to remain

0:42:000:42:04

such a middle-class white institution?

0:42:040:42:07

I don't think it's ever been anything other

0:42:070:42:10

than a middle-class white institution, by and large.

0:42:100:42:13

I mean, people often recruit in their own image and that part of it.

0:42:130:42:17

I remember when I applied to join the BBC News scheme in 1989

0:42:170:42:23

and I got the literature and it said people criticise the BBC

0:42:230:42:27

and this scheme for being Oxbridge-biased,

0:42:270:42:29

but, last year, only half of the successful applicants

0:42:290:42:33

came from Oxford or Cambridge. And I thought, wow,

0:42:330:42:35

just half of the people in this senior stream

0:42:350:42:39

went to one or two universities!

0:42:390:42:41

You know, so what chance does a comprehensive school guy

0:42:410:42:44

from a regional university have?

0:42:440:42:46

So they are picking from a particular pool of people?

0:42:460:42:48

Absolutely. What's happened in the BBC's history

0:42:480:42:51

is one or two black or Asian people have moved forward,

0:42:510:42:54

and then one of them leaves,

0:42:540:42:55

and one of them decides to do something else

0:42:550:42:57

or gets made redundant, and, suddenly, there's none again.

0:42:570:43:00

I think the real challenge for the BBC and, in fact,

0:43:000:43:03

for all the media organisations,

0:43:030:43:05

is that they are largely staffed with middle-class graduates

0:43:050:43:10

who don't have much of an idea about working-class life,

0:43:100:43:14

never mind black life or Asian life.

0:43:140:43:16

The BBC announced its new diversity strategy earlier this year,

0:43:210:43:25

which aims to help black and ethnic minority staff

0:43:250:43:29

get to those top jobs.

0:43:290:43:30

It includes a new leadership development programme,

0:43:310:43:34

an assistant commissioner's training scheme and more interns.

0:43:340:43:39

Tunde Ogungbesan is the BBC's head of diversity

0:43:410:43:44

and he recognises the BBC still has some way to go.

0:43:440:43:49

We would like to have a more representative newsroom, yes.

0:43:500:43:53

I'm not going to look around and have a look,

0:43:530:43:55

but what I can say, again, is that this new strategy

0:43:550:43:59

that we've got in place is aimed at helping the BBC reflect

0:43:590:44:05

and represent the United Kingdom in its workforce.

0:44:050:44:08

That's what this new strategy is all about.

0:44:080:44:10

So, yes, there are things we haven't got to where we want to be yet,

0:44:120:44:15

that's why we've put a strategy in place.

0:44:150:44:18

We can do better and we will do better.

0:44:180:44:21

Almost every institution and influential profession you look at,

0:44:260:44:29

black men and women are under-represented

0:44:290:44:31

in positions of power and influence.

0:44:310:44:33

The media, law, the armed services and politics

0:44:330:44:36

are all top-heavy white, bottom-heavy black institutions.

0:44:360:44:40

That is a shocking reality of today's Britain.

0:44:400:44:43

We are almost there, nearly at the top job.

0:44:490:44:53

It's been a long and difficult journey,

0:44:530:44:56

but if a black person were going to make it

0:44:560:44:59

to the office of prime minister,

0:44:590:45:01

they'd have to get into this place first.

0:45:010:45:03

How diverse is that place?

0:45:260:45:28

How reflective is it of the wider public that it serves?

0:45:280:45:32

How representative are our representatives?

0:45:320:45:36

Let's look at our members of Parliament

0:45:400:45:42

and compare them to the country at large,

0:45:420:45:44

who they are in Parliament to represent.

0:45:440:45:46

White people make up 87%

0:45:480:45:50

of the wider population,

0:45:500:45:52

but white MPs make up 94% of Parliament.

0:45:520:45:55

Non-white people make up 13% of the wider population.

0:45:570:46:00

However, they only make up 6.3% of MPs in Parliament.

0:46:000:46:05

And while people of black African-Caribbean heritage

0:46:070:46:09

make up 4% of the wider population,

0:46:090:46:12

they only make up 2% of the MPs in Parliament.

0:46:120:46:15

Out of a total of 650 MPs,

0:46:180:46:21

just 13 are black or mixed-race black.

0:46:210:46:25

'I arranged to have lunch with one of those black MPs, Kate Osamor

0:46:310:46:35

'a working-class, state-educated black woman.

0:46:350:46:39

'Quite a number of minorities all wrapped up in one.'

0:46:430:46:46

-Do you like spicy food?

-I love spicy food.

-Well, you'll like this place.

0:46:460:46:49

-I'm looking forward to that.

-Wonderful. Thank you.

0:46:490:46:51

-Oh, wow!

-Oh, gosh!

0:46:510:46:53

You've got to make sure you dip it in a bit of the...

0:46:540:46:56

Look at that!

0:46:560:46:58

'If someone like Kate can make it into Parliament,

0:47:000:47:02

'and into the Shadow Cabinet,

0:47:020:47:05

'then the chances of a black person one day

0:47:050:47:07

'making it to the very top job must be improving.'

0:47:070:47:10

What was it like for you arriving in Parliament,

0:47:130:47:17

being surrounded by these very white, very upper-class individuals?

0:47:170:47:23

Well, first and foremost, it's not the first time I've met posh people!

0:47:230:47:27

-THEY LAUGH

-I've met them before.

0:47:270:47:29

So I wasn't totally a fish out of water.

0:47:290:47:32

But, you know, in all seriousness,

0:47:320:47:34

there are loads of protocols that you have to adhere to,

0:47:340:47:37

you've got to learn, which I was never taught.

0:47:370:47:40

So I'm learning how to speak in a language that I don't normally use.

0:47:400:47:44

I'm learning to always get permission before I speak,

0:47:440:47:48

I don't come from that. I come from, just, you fight your way through.

0:47:480:47:51

If you've got something to say, just say it!

0:47:510:47:53

Quickly! And get out of the room.

0:47:530:47:55

But, no, in all seriousness, I think that's one of the biggest issues.

0:47:570:48:01

If you're not confident,

0:48:010:48:02

if you don't think someone wants to hear your voice,

0:48:020:48:05

then you're not going to ask.

0:48:050:48:06

You're going to sit back and you're going to be intimidated,

0:48:060:48:09

whereas I'm the opposite. I have a story and I want to speak.

0:48:090:48:12

I want to speak up for all of those people that I grew up with

0:48:120:48:15

that didn't have anyone speaking for them.

0:48:150:48:17

I have to push past the poshness, the upper-class...

0:48:170:48:21

Just forget that. They are like me.

0:48:210:48:24

They do the same things as I do.

0:48:240:48:27

What do you think the chances are

0:48:270:48:29

of Britain having a black prime minister?

0:48:290:48:31

It's possible. But we do need to have more MPs first

0:48:310:48:35

for that to happen.

0:48:350:48:36

So you need more of your critical mass

0:48:360:48:39

for you to be able to get through.

0:48:390:48:41

And at this point in time, that's not happened,

0:48:410:48:43

so we need more MPs that are coming from diverse communities first

0:48:430:48:47

before we can look at having a black, you know, prime minister.

0:48:470:48:51

You know, we have an incredible situation in Britain today

0:49:020:49:05

where it's entirely possible for our politicians,

0:49:050:49:08

who rely on policy advisers to advise,

0:49:080:49:10

and civil servants to devise policy,

0:49:100:49:13

and for journalists who report on them

0:49:130:49:16

all to have studied the same courses at the same universities

0:49:160:49:21

and, quite possibly, have been taught by the same tutors.

0:49:210:49:25

The British system is elitist and it has to change.

0:49:260:49:29

The question is,

0:49:290:49:30

how is that change going to happen?

0:49:300:49:32

I dipped my own toe into political waters last year

0:49:390:49:42

when I agreed to front a TV advert

0:49:420:49:45

'designed to encourage black people to vote.

0:49:450:49:47

'It didn't pull its punches.'

0:49:470:49:49

If you're black or Asian, and you're not registered to vote,

0:49:510:49:54

you're actually taking the colour out of Britain.

0:49:540:49:57

And, quite frankly...

0:49:570:49:58

..that looks ridiculous.

0:49:590:50:01

Now, I know you don't feel represented by politicians.

0:50:010:50:04

The thing is, if you're not registered,

0:50:040:50:07

-then they won't

-ever

-listen.

0:50:070:50:10

It's the chicken and egg.

0:50:100:50:11

The advert was for campaign group Operation Black Vote.

0:50:130:50:17

It's led by former race equality and human rights commissioner Simon Woolley.

0:50:170:50:23

-Hey!

-Hello.

0:50:230:50:25

-Good to see you, man.

-You, too. How are you?

-Yeah, really good.

0:50:250:50:28

'Along with encouraging black people to use their vote,

0:50:280:50:32

'Operation Black Vote also does what it can

0:50:320:50:34

'to support black candidates and MPs,

0:50:340:50:36

'whatever their political party.'

0:50:360:50:38

We've been doing some work so it's a bit of a mess at the moment.

0:50:420:50:45

'Simon has been closely studying

0:50:450:50:47

'black politics in the UK for decades.

0:50:470:50:49

'He understands better than most the compromises

0:50:500:50:53

'black politicians need to make in order to get on.'

0:50:530:50:56

I have all these conversations because I need to,

0:51:000:51:02

with politicians from all political parties.

0:51:020:51:04

And one black MP, who will remain nameless, once said to me,

0:51:040:51:09

"Simon, when I joined the party,

0:51:090:51:11

"there was a real engagement to beat the blackness out of me..."

0:51:110:51:17

"..if I was to make progress..."

0:51:190:51:21

I said to him, "What do you mean by that?"

0:51:210:51:23

He said, "Look, we know you're black,

0:51:230:51:25

"but we don't want you to talk about it."

0:51:250:51:26

-Can you say which party it was?

-No.

0:51:260:51:29

So, for a black candidate, then...

0:51:300:51:33

-You have to play the game.

-You have to play the game.

0:51:330:51:35

But playing the game, you can't be too black...

0:51:350:51:37

-You can't be too black.

-Because if you are, it frightens the horses.

0:51:370:51:40

-You're not going to get that vote.

-No.

0:51:400:51:42

How ready and willing do you think the British public are

0:51:420:51:45

to elect a black prime minister?

0:51:450:51:48

I'm an eternal optimist.

0:51:490:51:52

And I do think, with the right character, the right individual,

0:51:520:51:56

an individual that's smart enough,

0:51:560:51:59

that the British public could readily vote

0:51:590:52:03

for a black prime minister.

0:52:030:52:05

And a black Prime Minister that says to the public,

0:52:050:52:08

"Look, our diversity is our strength.

0:52:080:52:11

"We embrace that."

0:52:110:52:13

I mean, I genuinely feel -

0:52:130:52:14

and I wouldn't have said this ten years ago, David -

0:52:140:52:17

that in our lifetime, within the next, I would say the next decade,

0:52:170:52:23

that we will see a black prime minister.

0:52:230:52:25

So, how important do you think it would therefore be

0:52:250:52:29

for this potential black prime minister

0:52:290:52:33

not just to win the black vote, but to win the majority white vote?

0:52:330:52:37

It's going to take a special individual

0:52:370:52:39

that is able to speak to the majority,

0:52:390:52:42

the white majority, if you like,

0:52:420:52:45

that you have their best interests at heart,

0:52:450:52:48

that you understand their challenges and concerns.

0:52:480:52:51

And you, as a minority prime minister,

0:52:510:52:54

are not going to favour your racial group,

0:52:540:52:58

that you're able to take everybody along.

0:52:580:53:00

It's critically important.

0:53:000:53:02

If they can take their constituencies along with them,

0:53:050:53:08

then they become the kind of rounded politician

0:53:080:53:11

that is able to resonate in all these different areas

0:53:110:53:14

that you need to do if you're going to be prime minister.

0:53:140:53:16

You cannot leave anyone behind.

0:53:160:53:19

So, our journey up through the British system,

0:53:260:53:29

through education, employment, politics

0:53:290:53:32

and, finally, to the office of prime minister

0:53:320:53:35

is almost at an end.

0:53:350:53:36

So what is the statistical likelihood

0:53:400:53:42

of a black person making it through the door of ten Downing St?

0:53:420:53:47

Faiza has developed her statistical model

0:53:560:53:58

which enables her to make a probability calculation.

0:53:580:54:01

OK, David, the calculation is complete.

0:54:030:54:06

The chances of a black child, born today,

0:54:060:54:10

making it up through the British system

0:54:100:54:12

and to number ten Downing Street

0:54:120:54:15

as Prime Minister is...

0:54:150:54:19

One in 17 million?!

0:54:190:54:22

That compares to one in 1.4 million for their white counterparts.

0:54:230:54:28

So a black person is 12 times less likely

0:54:280:54:32

to make it to number ten Downing Street

0:54:320:54:34

as Prime Minister than their white counterparts.

0:54:340:54:38

I'm kind of speechless about that, actually.

0:54:420:54:45

12 times less likely...

0:54:450:54:48

Wow! So, what were we saying earlier on

0:54:500:54:53

about having to work twice as hard?

0:54:530:54:54

Maybe it's having to work 12 times as hard.

0:54:540:54:58

I mean, of course, we know that people do beat the odds.

0:55:000:55:03

-Of course.

-But that is a huge odd to beat.

0:55:030:55:06

OK. One in 17 million.

0:55:060:55:09

You know what you've got to do!

0:55:100:55:12

But, David, that isn't the end of the story.

0:55:130:55:15

For those who are white and born into wealthy households,

0:55:150:55:20

who go to private school, get into the top universities,

0:55:200:55:24

onto the top jobs...

0:55:240:55:26

..their chances of becoming prime minister are...

0:55:280:55:34

Hugely smaller numbers.

0:55:340:55:36

In fact, they are 90 times more likely

0:55:360:55:41

to make it to prime minister than a black person.

0:55:410:55:46

Huge difference.

0:55:470:55:49

-Huge difference.

-Incredible numbers.

0:55:490:55:52

Really fundamentally staggering numbers.

0:55:520:55:55

So what this has clearly demonstrated to me

0:55:560:55:59

is that the system is structured in such an elitist way

0:55:590:56:03

that it favours wealth, privilege over others,

0:56:030:56:08

particularly people of colour.

0:56:080:56:09

If you're a state school-educated black kid,

0:56:090:56:12

even if you cross all those hurdles that we've already talked about,

0:56:120:56:17

the system still, inherently, is going to disadvantage you.

0:56:170:56:21

-Yep.

-You would think that they have a more fundamental understanding

0:56:210:56:26

of the difficulties of life,

0:56:260:56:27

as opposed to somebody who's really been fed privilege all his life.

0:56:270:56:31

What does he really understand about life?

0:56:310:56:32

What does he really know about the struggles of life?

0:56:320:56:35

How is he then able to walk into Number Ten

0:56:350:56:39

and tell us how to live our lives?

0:56:390:56:43

It's quite staggering, really.

0:56:440:56:46

I refuse to be disheartened.

0:57:010:57:03

If there's one thing I've learned from my own life,

0:57:030:57:06

it's that black people can and will, despite the odds,

0:57:060:57:11

break through those barriers to success.

0:57:110:57:13

It's a struggle that starts from the day you were born

0:57:160:57:20

and would appear to remain throughout your life.

0:57:200:57:23

But the people I've met making this film

0:57:280:57:31

have given me real optimism

0:57:310:57:32

that, one day in the not too distant future,

0:57:320:57:38

-we

-will

-make it to the very top job.

0:57:380:57:42

If a black man or woman is ever going to make it here,

0:57:470:57:50

they are going to have to make the most extraordinary journey.

0:57:500:57:53

They will most likely have had to overcome the barriers of poverty

0:57:530:57:56

and the lack of social networks.

0:57:560:57:58

They will have to fight past the obstacles in our education system

0:57:580:58:01

and avoid the pitfalls.

0:58:010:58:02

The chances are they will have to face down discrimination

0:58:020:58:05

in the workplace and defeat political prejudice

0:58:050:58:08

in order to rise to the top.

0:58:080:58:10

Any black individual who can achieve this

0:58:100:58:12

will need to have a set of superhuman characteristics

0:58:120:58:15

and qualities and be the most multifaceted

0:58:150:58:18

and resilient of individuals.

0:58:180:58:21

And, of course, they'll need a healthy dose of luck.

0:58:210:58:24

That...

0:58:240:58:25

Well, that could take a lifetime.

0:58:260:58:29

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