While both Labour and Conservative parties talk about the value of parental choice in education, other countries are actively encouraging it. “All state schools could become independent.” says the reports author, former Fabian society research chief Stephen Pollard. Examples are given where the public funding private provision model is successfully being used. In America charter schools, which have been set up by local parents receive tax funding, are non selective and are exempt from much of the regulation imposed on state schools. New Zealand has copied the charter school model, replacing the old district bureaucracies with new boards of trustees for each school and has abolished zoning. 82% of New Zealanders now claim to be satisfied with their children’s education, and 97% of low income families being satisfied. Equality and educational standards would both rise if the government stopped running schools and paid others to do it instead.

 

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