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Plan to scrap private schools would impact nearly 21,000 pupils in Kent

Nearly 21,000 pupils in Kent would be affected by Labour Party plans to scrap private schools.

The figures, obtained by The Knowledge Academy, come after the controversial policy was criticised by some of the county's education officials last month.

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It says 20,961 pupils in 57 schools in Kent would be impacted - making the county the third most affected in England.

Only Surrey (46,583), and Hertfordshire (22,130), have more youngsters going to private schools.

The so-called 'abolish Eton' motion was passed overwhelmingly at the Labour Party conference in Brighton.

Delegates voted to integrate "elite" schools into the state sector, which would mean withdrawing charitable status and removing public subsidies and tax privileges.

A government led by Jeremy Corbyn pledged to "challenge the elite privilege of private schools", saying "the ongoing existence of private schools is incompatible with Labour's pledge to promote social justice".

Nearly 21,000 children in Kent go to private schools
Nearly 21,000 children in Kent go to private schools

In total 120 schools and 258,792 pupils attend non state-run schools in England.

Ben Charles, headmaster of King's School in Rochester, earlier said: "Tearing down independent schools would not improve our education system", while Francie Healy, headmaster of the Bethany School in Cranbrook described the plan as "insane".

Speaking about the findings, Knowledge Academy representative Joseph Scott said: "There exists a sizeable group of people against the concept of private education.

"Arguments like socio-economic privilege and a lack of paying tax add to a negative shroud over the sector.

"Yet we cannot deny the academic and otherwise success of these schools, not to mention the jobs, and community interest they generate.

"So, if Labour were given the opportunity to execute their plans, how would our economy/society be affected?

"It could be argued that state schools would be overwhelmed by the integration of thousands of these extra children, but at the same time the added income from redistributing assets could potentially be beneficial and counteract this.

"Of course this is only a narrow consideration, and only time will tell."

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