A report out yesterday says that independent schools must cut their fees or face a drop in pupil numbers. Basic economics, I am happy with the recommendation.
Take one of the well known local schools, Harrow School. This is what the Harrow School says on the Charity Commission website. The fees schedule is here. And this just the basics, say another 5k on top, a total of £30k per student.
It also says here
Is there any assistance for those who cannot afford the fees?
There are a number of Scholarships which cover some or all of the fees. Click here for more information about Scholarships.
Additionally, there are a small number of means-tested bursaries which are awarded to boys who win academic or music scholarships and whose family income is less than £35,000 a year.
Bursaries are not normally available for pupils whose parents find that they cannot afford the fees once the boy has started at Harrow. School fees protection insurance will pay for a year's education on the death of the fee-paying parent; details of such insurance will be sent to parents before their son starts at Harrow.
So given that (and I quote), "There are about 160 places in the Shell year (at age 13) for which we have on average 500 applications at the 11+ admissions test stage." quite a lot of parents who are able to pay an eye watering sum of 30k per year on their child, one wonders why the school is tax-exempt?
And the really strange thing is, the grammar school system is frankly paused. If the British populace and politicians are really going after egalitarian objectives and reducing inequality, then how does it manage to justify giving tax breaks to the independent sector while managing to stop Grammar Schools? Confusing or what? And no, they are not apples and pears. Grammar schools were canned (mostly) because they operate on the basis of selection. And how are the independent schools NOT operating on the basis of selection? that too on my tax pounds?
Weird or what? Answers on a tiny postage stamp please.
All this to be taken with a grain of piquant salt!!!