Labour’s declaration of war on private schools, promising to withdraw their charitable status and redistribute “democratically and fairly” their “endowments, investments and properties”, will cost the taxpayer almost £7.5 billion a year.
Let me break that down. According to the Department for Education, 580,480 English children up to the age of 19 are currently at independent schools. Of those, 58,445 are under five, 194,592 are aged five to 10, 237,333 are aged 11 to 15 and 90,110 are 16-19.
An IFS report on per pupil spending per annum in England’s schools published in August of last year estimated the average spending on early years education as £1,700 per pupil, the average for a primary school pupil as £4,900, the average in secondaries as £6,300 and in sixth forms as £5,600. Applying those figures to the DfE’s numbers gives you a cost of £99.4 million per year to educate the under-fives, £953.5 million for the 5-10 year-olds, £1.5 billion for the 10-15 year-olds and £504.6 million for the 16-19 year-olds. So that’s a total of £3.06 billion. (To read more, click here.)