Friday, 7 January 2011

New Year...time to blog!

Its been almost three month since i last blogged and this is due to total lack of time now that I am back at work. However, the new year brings new energy and i am determined to use as much spare time as possible this year reading, writing and getting involved with politics and the Labour Party especially.
I am starting by attending the Fabian New Year Conference next Saturday, and then meeting the Fabian Women afterward. There are some impressive speakers lined up and I am especially keen to see Chuka Ummuna in action, he is definitely one to watch and came over really well on Panorama earlier this week. Sadiq will also be speaking so I am sure there will be some friendly Tooting faces at the event.
i have read the latest Fabian Review from cover to cover this week which was definitely food for thought.
Liam Byrne's warning that Labours policy review has to be an effective and ongoing conversation echoed Douglas Alexanders comments earlier this week that it is simply not enough for Labour to condemn the coalitions policies without offering a credible alternative and laying out their plan to rebuild both the economy and the peoples confidence. They should not underestimate a public that is suffering from the cuts but is also still bruised from the perceived arrogance of a Labour Party that is now largely acknowledged to have ignored the needs of their core voting group.
Focusing on policy; I was totally sold on the idea of charging VAT on private school fees having read Sunder Katwala's essay on the gap between private and state school spending per pupil. I found it astonishing that despite the previous government increasing per pupil spending by 4% year on year by the 2010 spending was only at private sector levels of 1997. Charging VAT on the 650,000 private school places would bring in revenues of almost £1.5bn; instantly alleviating the funding problem that is causing the 'pupil premium' to potentially be a regressive measure in some areas.


  1. I agree with you on the VAT on private school fees. Thanks to the massive investment in education under the last Labour Government, the state run sector is in much better condition, both physically and educationally than it has been for many decades. Although there are still some schools with low achivement, I think we can now consider than private school is definitely a luxury - not a necessity.

  2. Absolutely agree, and it's nice to see you blogging again. Keep up the good work!

  3. Great idea, VAT on school fees, i presume it's already on privaate med bills?
    Great blog too, well done.