Friday, 15 November 2019

We own land! (near a good state school. Labour wants to) give us money!

Labour wants to ban private schools. Well, not all private schools, nurseries, private tutors, and universities will still be able to charge fees, but most of them and all of those that are misleadingly called "public" schools, and especially Eton, yes, most especially Eton.

Quite apart from the fact that the main reason for doing this appears to be based on a fallacy (the same wealthy, privately educated families keep hold of the top jobs down the generations, not because they are privately educated, but because they are descended from the elite), such a measure would fail to convert what is effectively a privately collected tax, i.e. school fees, into a publicly collected one.

Much is made of "redistributing", actually confiscating, the private schools' assets, but the income derived from these forms only a tiny proportion of private schools' income, mostly because the rich schools are a very small minority of private schools, and the vast majority of the extra £3.6Bn needed to educate the 615,000 pupils currently educated by the private sector would have to come out of the state education budget.

Where would the £10.5Bn currently spent by parents each year on school fees go? The most likely answer is into higher land prices near good state schools, as parents move to be in their catchment areas. The inevitable result of such "edugentrification" would be that poorer families would be gradually priced out of these catchment areas and the "good" state schools would become publicly funded versions of the private schools they replaced.

Indeed, with some plans for the abolition of private schools proposing the subsuming of the private schools into the state sector, together with all their facilities, the new upper tier state schools could be exactly the same schools as the current private schools.

The only difference would be that the billions that went to fund education under the old system would go to fund higher land prices under the new.


Mark Wadsworth said...

Yes. My big problem with private schools is the 'privately collected tax' element. As you say, if they nationalised them, that would just end up as 'privately collected tax' on surrounding homes.

Penseivat said...

"Labour wants to ban private schools, well, not all private schools."
They only want to ban those that their children don't go to, such as the one 'Numbers' Abbot sent her child to on the other side of London to where she lived, while insisting her constituents sent theirs to the local branch of St Trinians. But, as she proclaimed "Carribean women look after their children." - a racist comment if ever there was one.
Anyone who has experience of, or who has read of, life in Socialist utopias, will realise that the elite in McDonnell's Marxist paradise will have specific schools for their children while the the rabble will have indoctrination centres.
Children, your future is red. Your future is f*cked.

Physiocrat said...

Education rationing by wallet came in when grammar schools were replaced by comprehensives. Labour started the process, the Conservatives continued it.

Lola said...

And, as with the nationalisation of the health care system in 1947 all the assets and endowments of the private schools would be sequestered by the State.
And given that Corbyn is a communist you can bet your bottom Dollar that Eron would become the school or the party's own people...(Not that that is much different to what happens now, mind).

Bayard said...

"And, as with the nationalisation of the health care system in 1947 all the assets and endowments of the private schools would be sequestered by the State."

Well, at least they weren't all sold off cheaply in a fire sale to their mates, well not immediately, anyway. I don't know whether the Tories have been slowly "liquidating" the NHS endowment estate since the days of Maggie T.

"And given that Corbyn is a communist you can bet your bottom Dollar that Eron would become the school or the party's own people..."

Seems unlikely. Eton's cachet has always been social, not academic. If it becomes a state school for the people of Slough, that social cachet will be lost. I can just hear the snobs braying, "Eton? no point in trying to get your son in there any more. Full of oiks and girls now, they let anyone in."

Lola said...

B. I reckon they've spent the endowments from the NHS
Eton. That's not what I mneant. The Corbyn's nomenklaturer would take it over for the exclsuive use of the Party - so the social v academic point you make would continue.

Bayard said...

L, that's what I thought, until my niece got a job working for the part of the NHS that distributes the money from the endowments as grants to hospitals.

Yes, but why would they want to do that? There would be no cachet outside the nomenklatura, who will be a tiny minority, for having gone to the nomenklatura school and the education the children of the nomenklatura would receive would not be any better, in fact worse, than what they could get elsewhere. I can easily see that the whole thing would backfire badly: "The new guy's struggling a bit." "Yes, his old man was in the Party so he had to send him to Eton, poor sod." "Ah, so that's why his secretary has to redo everything he writes".

James James said...

Guardian columnists who already live near and send their children to good state schools would win as their land prices went up.

Dr Evil said...

They have junked that stupid idea about abolishing private schools. They will put VAT on the fees instead. If they get elected I'm sure they would junk a lot more of the stupid bribes they are waving under the noses of the electorate. I just hope people aren't taken in by bright, shiny things.

Bayard said...

Dr E, given that VAT is a universal tax, with exceptions for powerful interest groups, we wait to see how long that pledge will last, as well.