Socio-educational vulnerability refers to the circumstances in which students face difficulties or challenges arising from socio-economic or contextual factors, such as a lack of resources or adverse family environments. Ability grouping during secondary school is widely used to improve student performance. The methodology tailored to students performance levels aims at providing improvements in their scores. This paper explores the complex relationship between ability grouping and socio-educational vulnerability. More specifically, it investigates how different student groups are affected by attending schools that implement ability grouping as compared to those that do not. The study is conducted in Spain, using the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) database and Propensity Score Matching methodology. The findings suggest that the ability grouping policy hinder equal opportunities for academically disadvantaged students, resulting in decreasing their abilities.

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