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Is banning private schools a workable solution?

(287 Posts)
APMF Tue 04-Dec-12 17:43:18

Whenever the conversation turns to bias in favour of privately educated people there are always voices that shouts out - ban private schools!

Is this a badly thought out knee jerk reaction or am I missing something?

IMO if private schools were to be banned the following would happen.

a) the rich would educate their kids abroad. Aged 18 those kids will be back to grab those coveted uni places and, on graduating, the top jobs. So no change there.

b) some will choose to buy up the properties around the highly regarded state schools. Thus driving up prices and nudging aside your untutored DC which is what is happening in parts of London

c) Some will take the fees saved and hire tutors in order to give their dcs an advantage.

d) x thousands of kids will rejoin the state system thus busting an already over stretched system. Tax increases for everybody to pay for the extra resources and if you thought that it was hard getting into your over subscribed comp at the moment ......

As I said above, is banning private schools a badly thought out solution or am I missing something?

NaturallyGullible Tue 04-Dec-12 20:42:59

So, Sminko, you acknowledge that private schools give a better education.

Why on earth would you want to abolish something that is good? I am bewildered.

FestiveFrollockingFrenzy Tue 04-Dec-12 20:43:08

The state and charity are not sufficient to take up the "slack"

FestiveFrollockingFrenzy Tue 04-Dec-12 20:44:22

Luxury tax? How will that help?

iyatoda Tue 04-Dec-12 20:45:08

Star and also private transport, private housing, private feeding (on anyone not on benefit. The state should just adopt us all!!

SminkoPinko Tue 04-Dec-12 20:45:29

Summerhill would be allowed to continue. So would Steiner. Choice would be there still. They would just have to offer education free at the point of access and stop discriminating against those whose parents are unable to pay. It would benefit the schools to have a wider intake, imo.

NessaYork Tue 04-Dec-12 20:45:55

This is going to make me horrifically unpopular, but here goes. If you were to tot up the number of convicted prisoners in any country, and divide them up into those who were privately educated and those who were not, and calculate the cost to the state of having caught, convicted and jailed each relevant population - you would have a graphic illustration of the burden is placed on the state by each group.

NaturallyGullible Tue 04-Dec-12 20:46:37

A luxury tax would be crazy as it would inevitably mean an outflowing of money from the treasury.

I firmly believe that any taxation of private school income should be accompanied by benefits and tax credits being paid using Luncheon Vouchers. Discuss. smile

NaturallyGullible Tue 04-Dec-12 20:47:59

So we give tax incentives to wacko schools, but not straight-up ones? Crazy!

SminkoPinko Tue 04-Dec-12 20:51:06

This would become compulsory.

I think this could be a viable model for "banning" private schools. Keeps the freedom of schools to run themselves and run on innovative lines if they want, keeps choice in the system. But stops the wrongness of pay to learn.

rabbitstew Tue 04-Dec-12 20:51:24

It is certainly true that if you close one loophole, another one opens up! If we could get the balance right between giving people freedom to behave as they choose and expecting a modicum of consideration towards others and a certain amount of self-restraint, we would be... not living in this country, or any other one I know. People are inclined towards being grossly self-centred and self-justifying, particularly if they are given all the freedom in the world. But to take away all freedom just encourages tyrants to mess everything up and create a reign of terror.

StarOfLightMcKings3 Tue 04-Dec-12 20:51:26

Not a tax on the school's income, but on the fee/price from the purchaser.

The state shoukd not adopt us, we shoukd adopt the state, and pay for it to deliver effective and efficient services that are good enough for ALL to use.

Luxury taxes can pay for some of this.

LAK11 Tue 04-Dec-12 20:53:52

OK, ready to be flamed..... My son goes to private school. State primary failed him in a big way. I prefer to pay for the type of education he needs. He does not fit 'in the box', it is working for him. As I see it we chose to privately educate him, therefore relieving the state... we still pay (an enormous amount of tax) so why whould we be penalised?? Surely this is a benefit for others trying to get into the 'good' state schools in my area.... SUPER competitive area.... my son is average

NaturallyGullible Tue 04-Dec-12 20:54:00


SminkoPinko Tue 04-Dec-12 20:55:01

Private schools are inequitable. Many offer wonderful opportunities. Of course they do. These opportunities should be open to all. They would therefore not be abolished. Rather their doors would become open to all.

NaturallyGullible Tue 04-Dec-12 20:58:33

I don't want to pay for all and sundry to use my schools' faculties and facilities.

I think 40% tax is a big enough contribution.

Actually, for one of my DC's schools, probably every state school in the country is better equipped. Leave us alone! I am already paying for state school places I am not using. Is at not enough in itself?

FestiveFrollockingFrenzy Tue 04-Dec-12 21:00:17

The best opportunities are not open to all though... And never will be. Opportunity by definition means "lucky chance" and "favourable circumstances". Implying not everyone gets them.

FestiveFrollockingFrenzy Tue 04-Dec-12 21:01:40

It's true, I pay for a state place and a private place... So I'm actually paying for another child to be educated. How is that a bad thing?

MoreBeta Tue 04-Dec-12 21:01:54

If you ban private school or even remove their charitable staus you will just drive up the cost of private tutors to get kids into grammar schools at 11+ or drive up house prices around good schools.

In the end, the market for education will still work the same way as before.

The rich will pay (for a house or a tutor) and those who cant pay will go to less good schools as the better schools fill up with relatively wealthy people - just like it is now.

GrimmaTheNome Tue 04-Dec-12 21:04:02

Don't break the part that seems to work before fixing the parts that don't. The country needs well-educated people.

I do think that schools - and other organisations such as churches - should only have partial charitable status in proportion to how much of their turnover goes on truly charitable activities.

ReallyTired Tue 04-Dec-12 21:04:30

Private education or private health gives different options. I pay for ds to have guitar lessons because I see music as important. Should that be banned. I am sure that someone will bleat that its unfair. Prehaps its unfair that dd gets to do gymnastics. Should Polish children be banned from attending saturday morning Polish school?

My children's state school is fab. It has a good range of extra curricular activites and the children are happy. I think the teachers find it hard to cater for 30 children in a class with such a wide range of ablity. There are children who would have been in special school ten years ago and some really gifted children. I don't feel there is any need for ds's school to buck their ideas up. I would like to see new academies being sponsored by outstanding state schools.

Prehaps one of the best things the present governant has done is to introduce free schools. Its a pity that more private schools (ie. Steiner schools) have not taken up free school status. I am sure that in ten years time the educational landscape of the UK will be more varied.

I would like real specialist free schools that nuture talented children. Ie. choiristers, ballet dancers, musicans, sports academies, prehaps football. (No academic selection)

iyatoda Tue 04-Dec-12 21:05:29

So Star maybe there should be no wage/salary earner, we all work and put all we are entitled to in one pot to be used by the state? Thank God for choice!! I would hate to live in a world where envy drives decision making.

If all private pupils returned to state ed, the problems will still exist because the problem with the state ed is not its name nor is it to do with the buildings/facilities... but everything to do with attitudes of most parents, their children and some state teachers

FestiveFrollockingFrenzy Tue 04-Dec-12 21:08:31

Good point. Would those who want to ban private education also ban private healthcare?

iyatoda Tue 04-Dec-12 21:11:47

We should also ban private housing and allocated housing too according to family size. Its unfair that I have 3 children but live in a 3 bed terraced and my neighbour opposite lives in a 6 bed detached house with just 1 child!!!!

iyatoda Tue 04-Dec-12 21:12:05


rabbitstew Tue 04-Dec-12 21:12:26

FestiveFrollockingFrenzy - you do not pay for anyone's state place. There is no charity case out there thanking their lucky stars that you exist. You just pay taxes which go towards all sorts of things. Some of those things you benefit from more than others. If you didn't pay any tax, you would be bothered by and directly charged for all the irritations the state currently clears up and sorts out for you. If the general population were largely completely uneducated, because the state didn't pay for anyone's education, you would find your life pretty shit, just like everyone else would. But if you want to go back to the squalor of life before the state got involved in any meaningful way in anything, feel free to move to Africa, or stop pretending you personally are directly paying for a place in a state school that you aren't using, it just makes you sound petty and selfish.

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