The English 'Public School' is anything but public. The Public Schools are the most
exclusive and expensive private schools where the majority of the pupils, aged 14
to 18, are boarders and where fees range from a humble £9000 a year at The King's
School, Worcester to £13,000 a year at Harrow, and slightly less at Eton. Entry to
the Public Schools is via the Common Entrance Examination (The Common Examination
for Entrance to Public Schools), but some Public Schools have such a long waiting
list that a prospective pupil's name should be registered with the school before
their first birthday!
The basic fees, as above, do not include school uniforms, pocket-money, sports equipment
and holiday excursions, nor extras like music lessons which can add substantially
(50%) to the annual bill.
Originally all the Public Schools were single-sex but most have now become coeducational.
Some accept a limited number of day-pupils and some are closely affiliated with religious
foundations. In earlier times The Public Schools were notorious for their strict
discipline and associated punishments and for widespread bullying. They are now,
however, very safe and happy establishments.