17th July 2018
Daily summary of the latest news and opinions from the world of independent education brought to you by Education Advisers...
The number of independent schools in the UK opening up campuses abroad will grow by more than a quarter this year alone, a study by ISC Research has found.
Private school overseas “franchises” are on the rise, a report has found, as they struggle to raise funds for bursaries for less well-off pupils.
There are currently 57 overseas campuses of British schools, with another 15 due to open in September. In the past two years, a further 19 have opened up, marking a steep increase in the past three years.
Richard Gaskell, schools director at ISC Research, said: “There hasn’t been much growth in the UK market for a lot of the independent schools and they are looking for a non-fee based income.
“They want to offer more bursaries, that is definitely a driving principal for many of the top schools. Opening a campus overseas is another major revenue stream. They also want to keep fees down, so this takes the pressure off.”
He explained that most private schools use a “franchise” model, where an investor or management company pays the school a fixed amount each year - similar to a royalty - in order to use their name, brand or expertise. The British “mother ship” school is often paid a percentage of the school fees each year, on top of the franchise fee.
Barnaby Lenon, chairman of the Independent Schools Council, said: “Schools want to offer more bursaries. They cannot afford to do that while putting up their fees and they know they have to hold their fees steady.”
He said that opening an overseas school is a “very good source of income” for institutions that want to raise more cash to fund places for disadvantaged pupils.
Mr Lenon, a former headmaster of Harrow School, said added that now the “pioneer schools” have shown it can be done, others are following suit.
The UK's biggest teaching union has called for all private home tutors to face criminal record checks before being allowed to work with children.
The National Education Union (NEU) said teachers barred from classrooms may try to work as private tutors.
Research by the Sutton Trust charity suggests the number of children in England and Wales who received tuition has doubled in a decade.
The government said parents could carry out a range of checks on tutors.
A minister said families could check the outcome of misconduct panel hearings.
It is estimated more than 350,000 secondary-aged school children have received private tuition in 2018, according to a survey commissioned by the Sutton Trust, up from about 160,000 in 2009.
One in three children said the extra private tuition - where a parent has paid for the child to have additional academic teaching on top of their lessons at school - was to help with their GSCE exams.
Read more at: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-44847114
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