The Labour leader’s most senior adviser advisor Seumas Milne and James Schneider, who is in charge of his press operations, both went to the exclusive Winchester College before studying at Oxford University. A staff member at the Labour Party told The Sunday Times said: “That proves irony is dead – two people with privilege came up with that.” This comes after Mr Corbyn suffered another recent blow as one of his closest aides is reported to be standing down by the end of the year.
Andrew Fisher, head of policy and the author of Labour’s 2017 manifesto, is said to not believe Mr Corbyn can win the next election.
He also claimed Mr Corbyn’s team lacked “professionalism, competence and human decency”.
A Labour source said: “We don’t comment on staffing matters.”
Meanwhile. a Labour government would scrap the “tax loopholes” which benefit private schools in its first budget, shadow education secretary Angela Rayner said during the party’s conference in Brighton.
She said she will task the Social Mobility Commission, which the party would rename the Social Justice Commission, with “integrating private schools”.
She said: “We will set that commission to making the whole education system fairer through the integration of private schools.
“Myself and John McDonnell will set out further steps the Labour government will take, but I can say today that our very first budget will immediately close the tax loopholes used by elite private schools and use that money to improve the lives of all children.”
Her remarks came during a debate on schools motions, including one moved by Battersea constituency party which calls on the next Labour general election manifesto to commit to “integrate all private schools into the state sector”.
This would include withdrawal of charitable status and “all other public subsidies and tax privileges”, including business rate exemption.
The motion adds universities would also have to admit the same proportion of private school students as in the wider population, currently seven percent.
In her speech, Ms Rayner also said Labour will introduce a price cap for school uniforms to make education fairer to “stop the scandal of children priced out of school” and end the “spiralling cost of school uniforms”.
She added: “Parents forced into debt, children in clothes that often don’t fit, and the Tories failing for four years to keep their promise to act.”
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Ms Rayner said a renewed “Sure Start Plus” programme would help young children, and free nursery education would be offered to all two, three, and four-year-olds through a new “National Education Service”.
Labour would also establish a new co-operative university for workers to share their skills with others.
Ms Rayner said: “So many of us will have been told ‘maybe university isn’t for you’.
“But if our education system isn’t for everyone, the problem isn’t us, it’s the system.
“So we will establish a comprehensive and co-operative university.
“A university with academic and vocational teaching on an equal footing. Common ownership of the production, distribution and exchange of knowledge itself.
“Because we often hear about the value created by innovation or investment but rarely that created by the labour of workers.
“Yet the resources of the new economy will not be dug out of the ground, as so often found, but it will be found in the life of the mind.”
On scrapping education regulator Ofsted, Ms Rayner said: “Schools will no longer be reduced to a one-word grade or subjected to a system that hounds teachers from the classroom.
“A new system of peer review will deliver school improvement, led by the experts in our schools, who can achieve more working together for the common good.”
The conference heard calls for further reforms of the education system.
David Flack, of the Rayleigh and Wickford CLP, hit out at grammar schools, saying they should be abolished to create a more equal system.
He said: “I support doing away with grammar schools. They are the disease that infects our educational system.”
Melanie Griffiths from the Socialist Education Association said there needs to be more “democratic accountability” in schools, and said academies are not transparent enough.
She said all multi-academy trusts should be broken up, with academies being made the responsibility of local authorities.
Ms Griffiths said new “education committees”, made up of elected councillors, as well as “stakeholders” like students, parents, and staff, would oversee education services in local areas.
Tom Barringer, of the Tottenham Constituency Labour Party, suggested abolishing Eton College.
He criticised Conservative politicians and Eton alumni, including Prime Minister Boris Johnson, before adding: “What if we went into the next general election saying, with Labour in power, we will abolish Eton?
“I think that would get Jeremy Corbyn into Number 10, I think that’d get John McDonnell into number 11 and get Angela Rayner into the Department for Education, and that’s exactly what we should do.”
Express.co.uk has contacted The Labour Party.
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