Closing private schools would not be 'burden' on state

Councillors back campaign against 'burning injustice' of private schools


The “class segregation” of private schools is a “burning injustice” that must end, say hundreds of councillors today.

In a letter to the Times, the signatories say that they reject claims in a letter from the Independent Schools Council to councillors that integrating private schools into the state sector would mean an “unbearable burden” on council budgets.

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They state: “The claims are not only grossly inflated, but class segregation of schools is a burning injustice that must end.”

The signatories to the letter say that they support Labour Against Private Schools, a grassroots campaign to abolish Eton College and other private schools.

The campaign is calling for the Labour party to commit to integrating all private schools into the state sector in its next general election manifesto.

But Mike Buchanan, executive director of the the Headmasters' and Headmistresses' Conference of private schools, has branded the campaign a "distraction".

He said that if independent schools "were harmed, the state would end up picking up the cost".

And Barnaby Lenon, chairman of the ISC, wrote in the Times last week that not only would “state resources be further stretched” if private schools were abolished but that the schools provided “excellence, capacity and innovation”.

Today's letter comes after a report showing the ‘shocking’ social divide in the take-up of music and sport between richer and poorer children.

The Social Mobility Commission, which published the report, has called for the introduction of a national extra-curricular bursary scheme for disadvantaged families.


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