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If I Keep Wondering 'how Can People Afford Private School?'


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Believe you me I didn't know until recently, my son kindly put me right and I paid for the thing :blink:

As a vehement critic of Socialism, although I could not afford to privately educate my kids

I would not wish to prevent anyone else from doing so.

The ideal solution would be an excellent state education system,

but as everything run by the state ends up totally corrupt and inefficient

that's never going to happen.

:blink:

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Interestingly, my daughter is sitting her 11+ this year for the local Grammar School, so Mrs BN has been investigating the processes etc.

Apparently numbers of applicants to sit is on the increase as private school pupils are more likely to apply as the parents try to move their children out of the system they are struggling to afford.

Some others 'anecdotally' are feeling that their kids would be better off in a Grammar School as the selection criteria means only the 'bright' ones get in, where as any half wit can have a private education, as long as your parents can pay.

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My opinion gained from having parents who taught both in the standard state, private and grammar systems is as follows:

Pupils (and parents) are the biggest factor - if the parents value education and pass this onto their kids then they'll succeed regardless of the school.

Teachers are no "better" in the private schools, it is simply a different experience - my mum would argue that teachers who had only taught in the private system would never cope in the state system, teaching 8 middle class children is obviously a lot different to 30 kids from a council estate.

A grammar school is as good as a "normal" private school for most pupils - it has the same filtering out effect to remove those who aren't interested in education.

The biggest difference between state and private schools is in confidence - state school pupils are taught to accept authority and that their opinions don't matter, private school pupils are taught they are important and that they should look to lead at all times.

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My opinion gained from having parents who taught both in the standard state, private and grammar systems is as follows:

Pupils (and parents) are the biggest factor - if the parents value education and pass this onto their kids then they'll succeed regardless of the school.

Teachers are no "better" in the private schools, it is simply a different experience - my mum would argue that teachers who had only taught in the private system would never cope in the state system, teaching 8 middle class children is obviously a lot different to 30 kids from a council estate.

A grammar school is as good as a "normal" private school for most pupils - it has the same filtering out effect to remove those who aren't interested in education.

The biggest difference between state and private schools is in confidence - state school pupils are taught to accept authority and that their opinions don't matter, private school pupils are taught they are important and that they should look to lead at all times.

Not just that. From the anecdote I observed, private school kids have less of a problem with expensive electronics and branded cloths than those in the state secondary (*perhaps because parents in the private schools tend to be rather broke after paying the school fees).

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"Just over 7.2% of pupils in England attend private schools but make up over a quarter of the intake at the 25 most selective universities, and 46.6% at Oxford . . . However, research carried out for the government has shown that pupils from comprehensives are likely to do better at university than private or grammar school pupils with similar A-level results."

But there are lots of talented kids whose parents can't / won't pay who will be pipped to the top places by richer thickies.

Friend the other day: 'Lots of people can afford private school. It's as little as only six grand a year for one child, and even if it's more, people are prepared to go without just so their child gets the best education blah etc . . .'

I'm getting sick of it of hearing this. But even sicker of myself to clinging on to my experience of private school being seemingly unaffordable to even the middle classes in the late 70's and 80's.

Is it just low interest rates keeping these places going?

6k a year or 500 quid a month:

Mum is on 25k :£1,613.53 a month after tax

Dad is on 35k :£2,180.20 a month after tax

Total after tax per month: £3797

Thats actually quite alot of month, if you have paid off most of the mortgage you could run the family and a car on just the mums salary £1500. If your careful with the spending there is enough income to send a couple of kids (at least) to a private school

Edited by AteMoose
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It is worth noting that many private schools are selective, and they get very few "thickies".

Yes, it's surprising how many people think it's all about money.

Good, academic schools (particularly day schools) can and do pick and choose.

I've known parents with pots of money who still couldn't get their kids into the school they wanted.

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Yes, it's surprising how many people think it's all about money.

Good, academic schools (particularly day schools) can and do pick and choose.

I've known parents with pots of money who still couldn't get their kids into the school they wanted.

My son goes to a private school in North London. 30:1 oversubscribed. Interviewed at age 2.

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  • 3 years later...

Apologies to resurrect an old thread.

After being declined a £250,000 mortgage for a home in the catchment area of an outstanding secondary we are looking at Twycross House School. A cursory glance of their website suggests excellent value for money? The alternative is a failing state school (39% attaining 5 G.C.S.E. Grade A-C). Will be going there to have a look on Tuesday, what questions should I be asking.

Daughter is two years away from being 8 and my son four years away.

Thanks.

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Apologies to resurrect an old thread.

After being declined a £250,000 mortgage for a home in the catchment area of an outstanding secondary we are looking at Twycross House School. A cursory glance of their website suggests excellent value for money? The alternative is a failing state school (39% attaining 5 G.C.S.E. Grade A-C). Will be going there to have a look on Tuesday, what questions should I be asking.

Daughter is two years away from being 8 and my son four years away.

Thanks.

The fees are comparable to the school (North West) my sister would really like to send her children to (long way from enrolling).

I'm hoping I will be able to assist her children with the fees via 'family business' option in this article.. but in my instance a genuine business [although not one which would cover fees for both (upto £10K allowance for each allowed) but just as partial 'assist' (few thousand pounds each]- but follow up research suggests more complicated than outlined in article, and I've not yet taken advice to see if I will qualify as brother.)

http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/bills/article-2558653/The-5-sneaky-perfectly-legal-ways-Britains-richest-parents-cut-tax-bill-private-school-fees.html

Of course she'd also like to buy a house closeby to the private school too.. not for catchment (there is none of course), just because it makes life so much easier, short distance to and from school.

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My link

"Just over 7.2% of pupils in England attend private schools but make up over a quarter of the intake at the 25 most selective universities, and 46.6% at Oxford . . . However, research carried out for the government has shown that pupils from comprehensives are likely to do better at university than private or grammar school pupils with similar A-level results."

Oh so your trusting research from the Government? (I would put up a photo of Gene Wilder playing Willy Wonker but you get the gist?).

Not been to Luton then? Luton formerly part of Bedfordshire, where for years the elected mayor could barely speak English, the proverbial excrement town. A town with really bad education that residents try to get their kids into schools in neighbouring North Hertfordshire, St Albans and rural areas of Central Bedfordshire. This has caused havoc in these areas in that locals are struggling to get their kids in because schools are over subscribed with kids from Luton.

Not only that but in North Hertfordshire kids from village schools now have no automatic entitlement to secondary education in the local town (Hitchin) and are being told they have to go to schools in Luton.

So people are forced to get their kids on a commute to schools out of the area or send them to local private schools, actually the latter can work out cheaper.

What would you do?

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My link

"Just over 7.2% of pupils in England attend private schools but make up over a quarter of the intake at the 25 most selective universities, and 46.6% at Oxford . . . However, research carried out for the government has shown that pupils from comprehensives are likely to do better at university than private or grammar school pupils with similar A-level results."

But there are lots of talented kids whose parents can't / won't pay who will be pipped to the top places by richer thickies.

Friend the other day: 'Lots of people can afford private school. It's as little as only six grand a year for one child, and even if it's more, people are prepared to go without just so their child gets the best education blah etc . . .'

I'm getting sick of it of hearing this. But even sicker of myself to clinging on to my experience of private school being seemingly unaffordable to even the middle classes in the late 70's and 80's.

Is it just low interest rates keeping these places going?

..usually funded by Trusts from previous generations.... :rolleyes:

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Be aware to the rather open-ended commitment you are making. Sure, should you ever hit hard times, you can theoretically take them out of independent school and release them into the wild. But people don't. Families are practically destitute before they consider removing the children from school, IME.

And prep school is just the start. That's reasonable. Senior school gets into taking the p155 territory. Admittedly, mine were boarding but the last year cost me something like £35k per sprog. And, while they utterly loved their school days and got top grades, it wasn't value for money.

If I were starting out again, I'd seriously consider homeschooling. I've known a few people who've done it very successfully. There's a local network of homeschoolers for the socialisation, sport, and extracurricular stuff and the wonga they save on fees covered tutors on an as-needed basis.

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Be aware to the rather open-ended commitment you are making. Sure, should you ever hit hard times, you can theoretically take them out of independent school and release them into the wild. But people don't. Families are practically destitute before they consider removing the children from school, IME.

And prep school is just the start. That's reasonable. Senior school gets into taking the p155 territory. Admittedly, mine were boarding but the last year cost me something like £35k per sprog. And, while they utterly loved their school days and got top grades, it wasn't value for money.

If I were starting out again, I'd seriously consider homeschooling. I've known a few people who've done it very successfully. There's a local network of homeschoolers for the socialisation, sport, and extracurricular stuff and the wonga they save on fees covered tutors on an as-needed basis.

Doesn't home schooling require Ofsted inspections? I wouldn't be surprised. How do they sit exams?

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Doesn't home schooling require Ofsted inspections? I wouldn't be surprised. How do they sit exams?

Nope. To intervene, the local authority would have to prove that you are not fulfilling the requirement that the children are receiving an education. As education is undefined, and as proving a negative is pretty hard, this rarely happens.

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Apologies to resurrect an old thread.

After being declined a £250,000 mortgage for a home in the catchment area of an outstanding secondary we are looking at Twycross House School. A cursory glance of their website suggests excellent value for money? The alternative is a failing state school (39% attaining 5 G.C.S.E. Grade A-C). Will be going there to have a look on Tuesday, what questions should I be asking.

Daughter is two years away from being 8 and my son four years away.

Thanks.

The difference between state primaries and private prep schools is not as big as that between state secondary and private senior schools.

If you think you may struggle to afford the fees, save now and pay for the senior school. Despite what many on here seem to think, it's worth it -

not only when it comes to GCSE / A-level results, but even more so, in personal development.

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Apologies to resurrect an old thread.

After being declined a £250,000 mortgage for a home in the catchment area of an outstanding secondary we are looking at Twycross House School. A cursory glance of their website suggests excellent value for money? The alternative is a failing state school (39% attaining 5 G.C.S.E. Grade A-C). Will be going there to have a look on Tuesday, what questions should I be asking.

Daughter is two years away from being 8 and my son four years away.

Thanks.

My school had 9% 5 A-C GCE's but i still did degree(Imperial) and phd fully funded by the tax payer including my beer. If your children are bright it doesn't matter if they go to a rubbish school. If they aren't bright you don't want to send them to a university, especially if it isn't payed for from someone else. As an employer I don't rate undergraduate degrees much now. Those 3 years were great fun though.....

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Nothing wrong chasing debt owed.

Sunday Times 07.06.15 - Money

Sketch-drawing; 'Today we learnt never to owe money to the Headmaster.'

Repaying £350 per month. Says owes £17,000, school solicitor letters threatening bankruptcy and adding £24,000 interest to outstanding sum. House up for sale. Later agreed to waive interest if pay £17,000 immediately. Current status, agreed for school to have a temporary charge on the house, and debtor paid schools £2,500 costs relating to charge (ending in December 2015).

You wanted you story to be published to warn other parents of the lengths to which private schools may go when fees are owed.

Edited by Venger
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Just a thought.......not what you know or even what school you went to, but who you know.......in other words hang about, make friends with the right people, live in and around the places where they choose to live...... go to the same parties they go to.

Anyone can educate themselves in today's world.....everything is out there if you look for it. ;)

Edit to say.....met some really lonely people that went to private boarding school....some had serious abandonment and mental issues including eating and self harming disorders......a school does not make a person.

Edited by winkie
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My school had 9% 5 A-C GCE's but i still did degree(Imperial) and phd fully funded by the tax payer including my beer. If your children are bright it doesn't matter if they go to a rubbish school. If they aren't bright you don't want to send them to a university, especially if it isn't payed for from someone else. As an employer I don't rate undergraduate degrees much now. Those 3 years were great fun though.....

Agree 100%

I went to prep school and then took the 12+ to the local grammar school. I did well at school and well enough for me, subsequently..

I was born in the mid 60s. Mother was at home and father was a self-employed shopkeeper.

I credit success through school by having a parent engaged with my 'learning' before I ever started prep school.

The prep school was all about learning too and it also 'set me up' with a learning ethic for state school1. But as I said, it all started at home.

I go often into state schools to give science lessons. State primary schools in places like Cheltenham exceed the prep school I attended in terms of facilities and pupil behaviour. Other primary schools can be as different a world as you can get, and I really give credit to the teachers who deal with with them on a day to day basis. Faced with the latter I would consider either home schooling or a prep school.

However, I believe that it is a lot about how engaged the parents are with the children and with providing an stimulating home environment with activities etc. Faced with a middle ground primary school, and if both parents are working, it may be more economical for one to stop at home and raise the children, and let them attend the local primary school, rather than go to work and pay school fees.

1As an example, weekdays were 8.30am to 5.30pm and Saturdays 8.30 - 1.00pm. Days began with 30 minutes of lessons at 8.30 before assembly at 09.00. There were 90 minutes of games every afternoon and Saturday was a mix of lessons and inter-school sports. We did french from 6 yrs and latin from 8 and solved simultaneous equations from 9.

Edited by LiveinHope
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