Parents stay together ‘to get their children into good schools’

Divorce rates plunge to lowest level since 1973 as parents stay together ‘to get their children into good schools’

  • Divorces plunge linked to parents wanting children in good schools, lawyers say
  • Divorce rates have fallen to their lowest level in England and Wales since 1973
  • Lawyers said a divorce could result in the sale of the family home close to a first-rate school and a move to a less-favoured area with inferior options 

Parents staying together to get their children into good schools may be behind falling divorce rates, lawyers said yesterday.

They said a divorce could result in the sale of the family home close to a first-rate school and a move to a less-favoured area with inferior options.

The suggestion by family lawyers at JMW Solicitors comes as divorce rates have fallen to their lowest level in England and Wales since 1973.

Parents staying together to get their children into good schools may be behind falling divorce rates, lawyers said yesterday [File photo]

The number of divorces has dropped by more than a third in the past 15 years.

JMW’s Elspeth Kinder said: ‘Competition has intensified for admission to top state schools – and for homes within the “right” area as a result – leading to a rise in couples putting off divorce to avoid the sale of the family home. 


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They experience feelings of intense guilt at the thought that no longer living within the right catchment area could dash their child’s hopes of admission to a particular school.’

Lawyers said a divorce could result in the sale of the family home close to a first-rate school and a move to a less-favoured area with inferior options [File photo]

Harry Benson, of the Marriage Foundation think-tank, urged parents who stay together for the sake of their children’s education to stick together for good.

‘It is tempting to think that parents who can stay together temporarily in the best interests of their kids might consider making this a permanent solution,’ he said. 

‘It is undoubtedly true that some marriages are unsalvageable. But unless there is abuse, addiction or adultery involved, marriages can always recover.’

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