Low–Low Educational Attainment and Socioeconomic Progression
This chapter acquaints the reader with the William family.
Mr William came from the Caribbean during the 1950s. He settled in Manchester, where he met and married Mrs William, a native. The family’s children were born and brought up in the upwardly mobile local community of Old Trafford, where they also attended community schools.
The William family’s social world is beset by hardship that is compounded by prejudices, isolation, and limited opportunities to alleviate their poverty, or to overcome limited opportunities. The second generation performed poorly in education, which reflected in poor socioeconomic outcomes. Low expectations across the generations manifest in preoccupation with basic needs and survival. Thus, poor performance in education continues to the third generation, whose members are predisposed to experience outcomes similar to those of their parents and grandparents. The chapter concludes with the assertion that predisposition to experience poor outcomes does not in itself predetermine poor outcomes. The relationship between predisposition and predetermination is explored in subsequent chapters.