“England’s poorer pupils face ‘geographic exclusion’ from top state schools – study”

Mar 1, 2023 | In the news, Tax

What’s this got to do with financial advice? Well, bear with me. I was a school governor for 15 years, through most of the Blair/Brown years and a bit of Coalition rule and in the heyday introduction of league tables and target-setting for everything. The idea was, of course, to encourage competition and focus the minds of those involved on what’s deemed to be important. And there’s the rub. If your funding and status is based on your SATS, GCSE and A Level results, ‘greater inclusivity’ is not likely to help; as a school you’re not going to try to pull in pupils from poorer areas who might bring your scores down. Now old-school financial advice firms were all about sales, competitions, incentives and glamorous overseas hols for the most successful, those flogging the most pensions, savings and life assurance plans. Our regulator decided that this might not encourage the best ‘consumer outcomes’ and all that sort of stuff has now disappeared. If you want to change schools’ behaviour, look at what you’re incentivising them to do. Or perhaps trust teachers (and financial advisers) to get on with the job, and trust that most of them actually do want to do a good one.

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“Pension tax relief ‘cost’ hits £27bn”

“Pension tax relief ‘cost’ hits £27bn”

The next Budget is a couple of months away. And it may actually be called a Budget this time; Jeremy Hunt’s was an ‘Autumn Financial Statement’, and Kwasi called his, accurately for all the wrong reasons, a ‘Game-Changing Fiscal Statement’.