As Labour continue to lead the fight against the injustice of… good schools operated at no expense to the state, Guido can shed yet more light on their leader’s private school days. A report from the Surrey Mirror in 1974 explained that Surrey Council “agreed to spend £289,000 to protect the futures of all pupils entering the Grammar School up to September 1975”. Sir Keir joined Reigate Grammar in 1974.
Which puts the VAT exemption on school fees which he himself is trying to scrap in the shade; Sir Keir benefitted from a taxpayer-funded private school free-ride. To put Starmer’s schooling costs into context: £289,000 then would be worth £2,500,000 today…
In a new development, a former schoolmate of Starmer got in touch to say that, like Starmer, his fees were paid by Surrey Council, though only up until he finished his O-Levels. His parents had to stump up for his fees when he started his A-levels in the sixth form. This would be consistent with this contemporaneous report from the Surrey Mirror:
By Guido’s calculation Starmer was only in the third form when the school became independent. This raises the question of how after he completed his O-levels in the fifth form, his (VAT free) fees for his sixth form A-level years were funded. In the past when Guido has raised questions about Starmer’s school years the Labour press office has become noticeably evasive. Some clarity on this from Sir Keir is required if he is going to make the status of independent school fees a political issue….