private schools / Christian schools

The Telegraph Wonders Why Private Schools Are Popular

2 August 2023


… and decides it’s because of ‘aspirational’ immigrants.

The Sydney Telegraph promised to tell us “why Aussie private school attendance is soaring”.

The paper reported that 35.5 per cent of Australian children now attend private schools. That figure, according to an ABC report, has doubled in the past 30 years.

So what could be the reason for the boom in private schooling?

The answer was in the headline:

“‘Aspirational’ Aussies twice as likely to fork out for private school as OECD allies”

According to experts quoted in the article, the popularity of private education is due to aspirational families, mostly immigrants, who want their children to have access to premium educational facilities like music rooms and swimming pools.

Social researcher Geoff Bailey told the newspaper:

“There is a sense of aspiration for a lot of Australians across the middle third of society really looking for an education that’s above the norm, above what might be an average experience.

“As a land of new migrants… we certainly have a sense of wanting to impress mum and dad or grandparents back home in a different country.”

Bailey might be right. The move away from public schooling may well be driven by snooty immigrants desperate to impress family in faraway lands.


Then again — and this is just a wild, crazy, out-there kind of idea — the move away from public schooling might be driven by conservative immigrants wanting to protect their children from progressive leftism that is now rampant in the public system.

Are immigrants really aspirational status-seekers? Maybe they are family-orientated social conservatives, who want the value system at their children’s school to reflect the values they teach at home.

Yeah, nah. It’s the snooty factor.

Researcher Chris Bonnor was quoted as saying:

“ … the shift was a ‘chase for a school up the socio-economic ladder’, including a trend toward more affluent or selective public schools.”

Most parents I speak to are less concerned about their child climbing the socio-economic ladder than they are about their child being exposed to the corrupting forces of Marxism.

They are desperate for their child to be educated in a disciplined environment where students can learn free of distraction.

They are concerned about their child being taught good (i.e. Christian) values rather than being indoctrinated into the cult of diversity, inclusion and equity.

They are willing to pay out of their own pocket to make sure their child is taught reading, writing and arithmetic rather than LGBTQ propaganda under the guise of ‘safe relationships’.

The demise of the public schooling system is not due to a lack of funding (public schools receive significantly more government money than private schools). Nor is it due to the whims of overly ambitious parents.

People are shunning the public system because public schools typically lack discipline, promote anti-family progressive values, and focus on social skills rather than cored educational imperatives.

But you won’t read that in the media.

Tell me I’m wrong.


Originally published at The James Macpherson Report.

Subscribe to his Substack here for daily witty commentary.
Photo by Yan Krukau.


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One Comment

  1. Kim Beazley 2 August 2023 at 12:18 pm - Reply

    “Tell me I’m wrong.”

    No way, James! You’re spot on, as usual!

    But there’s one issue here that tells me the situation cannot improve for the public school system any time soon. When you have a social researcher who can refer to “the middle third of society really looking for an education that’s above the norm, above what might be an average experience”, and say so in such a matter-of-fact manner, then “average” is all that’s expected of the public system.

    Where is the positive demand for governments to lift public education above the “norm” and the “average”? That’s the real tragedy!

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