According to the Times on 12th November, ‘Nicola Sturgeon has been accused (no sources) of fighting a class war’ as the Scottish government brings in the requirement that private schools pay full business rates. Small schools educating children with special needs will almost certainly be exempt. They then suggest that the Scottish Government is ‘tacking to the left’ with plans to raise income tax for high earners and to reduce university entry requirements for children from deprived areas. All of this is good news for Scotland, I’d say, though not so good for the Labour Party here as it struggles to find a boat, any boat, in which it can ‘tack’ even further left. I see the article was written by a John Boothman. Can it be the same John Boothman ‘moved on’ by BBC Scotland News after accusations of bullying in his department? Did he buy a yacht with his compensation and now thinks and writes like a yacht-owning Tory?
Just in case you need a reminder of why private education is bad, for all of us, see this from Owen Jones in the Guardian:
As the latest Sutton Trust study into the backgrounds of Britain’s elites underlines, we shouldn’t be surprised. It underlines the findings of repeated studies: that from politics to the media (yes, this newspaper included) to high court judges to film and theatre, the privately educated – 7% of the population – reign supreme. More than seven in 10 of Britain’s top military brass had parents with the means to send them to private schools; the proportion is even higher with top judges. The world of journalism is dominated by gilded backgrounds: according to the study, over half of the top journalists are privately educated, with just 19% having attended a comprehensive. As for politics: well, half the cabinet went to fee-paying schools very few of their electors could hope to attend. Further, over two-thirds of all Oscar-winning Brits are privately educated; and while that figure drops to 42% among Bafta winners, it still remains completely out of sync with the population as a whole. Unless you believe that being privileged and being gifted are the same thing, then nobody can look at these figures as a fair distribution of talent and ability.