Labor to impose immediate tax on private school fees, says Starmer

Labor leader Sir Keir Starmer has stated that a Labor government would quickly introduce taxes on private school fees.

Speaking on BBC Radio 4's Today programme, Starmer confirmed that the VAT exemption currently enjoyed by private schools would be abolished “as soon as this is practicable”, resulting in a 20% increase in tuition fees.

The VAT exemption, which independent schools benefit from due to their classification among the educational provision, allows them to avoid VAT on their tuition fees. Labour's proposal aims to redirect this financial benefit to better support state education.

Starmer emphasized the urgency of this policy, saying: “It is clear that there needs to be financial statements etc. It is a question of the timetable in Parliament. But the intention is that these first steps are taken immediately.”

The abolition of the VAT exemption is part of Labour's wider strategy to tackle inequality in education funding and ensure public resources are distributed more fairly. The immediate introduction of this tax underlines Labour's commitment to reforming the education sector and investing in state schools.

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