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We Have Private Schools, Why Not Private Universities?

05-10-2012 03:56 PM CET | Science & Education

Press release from: Tutors International

Independent education consultant, Adam Caller, wholeheartedly supports the formation of the New College of Humanities in London.

The article, reported by the BBC on 20 April 2012 ( by Angela Harrison, reveals that the new private college opening in London will charge £18,000 a year.

Critics argue that the college is elite, and will encourage the privatisation of higher education. Currently, the New College of Humanities is affiliated with the University of London, and students attending the college will prepare to take an internationally recognised degree from the university.

“Eventually, the college will probably become independent.” comments Caller. “Once it starts to turn out the highest calibre of humanities graduates in the UK, it will become earn a place among the best in the world. Once it has that status, it can afford to become independent and set its own admission and scholarship criteria and examinations.”

The college’s master, Professor Grayling, argues that the college would be “elite but not exclusive”, but while there will be 7 full scholarships and 37 partial scholarships awarded, the college will only be accepting around 22% of pupils from state schools – the “lowest proportion of state school pupils of any university”, according to the University and College Union.

Professor Grayling was reported to have said that there is something to be said for an elite education. Caller agrees, “We live in an elitist society already. Those who can afford it, pay for the best. Some parents choose to pay to send their children to private schools, where it’s acknowledged that they will usually receive a better standard of education than if they went to a state school. Private secondary schools set their own entrance exams, so they accept excellent students who can afford to study there. Private colleges operate on the same principle.”

Oxford and Cambridge are among the UK’s top universities, but Caller is disappointed with the standard of literacy, business skills and common sense displayed by graduates. “I handpick private tutors for my clients from thousands of applicants and I’ve seen the calibre of Oxbridge graduates decline over the years. For UK graduates to compete for jobs in the international market, they need to be every bit as good as graduates from Harvard or Yale. Those universities run on a private, independent basis, and can afford to pay the top researchers and buy the very latest equipment. The UK needs to improve its education standards, and I believe private, independent colleges are a necessity.”

Caller argues that independence will enable colleges to decide who to accept, on what basis, what fees to charge, what resources to buy, and what staff to recruit. This will enable them to deliver the best standards of education in the world.

Tutors International is a worldwide organization providing experienced private tutors to work with children of all ages and nationalities. Tutors are available for full-time tutoring positions, for major support and tutoring outside school hours, or for home-schooling.

Tutors International was founded by former private tutor, Adam Caller. in 1999. A member of the prestigious Independent Education Consultants Association, he specialises in special educational needs and international education, and he has now turned this expertise to recruiting, training and placing other tutors to help families.

Adam Caller,

Tutors International, Clarendon House, 52 Cornmarket Street, Oxford, OX1 3HJ, UK

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