RISHI Sunak has been asked to explain why state schools are “not good enough” – as he spends more than £63,000 every year sending his children to exclusive private schools.

The Prime Minister – who has an extreme wealth that opponents say makes it impossible for him to relate to the average person – has two young daughters. He spends more than double the median wage of a UK worker (£31,285) on their private education every year.

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One goes to an exclusive boarding school charging annual fees of £41,250, while the other goes to a school charging £22,350 every year, according to multiple reports.

Sunak has also faced criticism for appointing a Cabinet in which 65% of its members went to a private school – more than nine times the number in the general population. Sunak himself went to the exclusive Winchester College, which currently charges £45,936 per year for pupils boarding.

The SNP’s education spokesperson at Westminster, Carol Monaghan, told The National that Sunak should send his children to state school to “clearly demonstrate that he has an interest in improving the educational experience and outcomes of all young people in England”.

The Glasgow North West MP (below) said: “Rishi Sunak must show he is not an out-of-touch multi-millionaire and that he understands the increasing financial pressures state schools are facing.

“Whilst he has the right to send his children to a school of his choosing, it does beg the question why he feels that this must be a private school. If state schools are not good enough for his own daughters, then he must make it his priority to improve them.

The National: SNP MP for Glasgow North West, Carol Monaghan,

“As it is, we now have a Prime Minister who believes other people’s children can put up with poorly funded schools, whilst he spends £22,000 per year on education for his own daughters.

“By sending his daughters to a state school he would clearly demonstrate that he has an interest in improving the educational experience and outcomes of all young people in England.

“Per-pupil spending in state schools in England currently sits at only £6600 per annum. Mr Sunak should increase this to match the per-pupil spending in Scotland and should follow the Scottish Government’s lead by removing private schools’ charitable status.”

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Analysis from the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) reported in 2021 that Scotland had the highest per pupil spend of anywhere in the UK, at £7600 per child per year. This was found to be around £800 more than spending in Wales, England, and Northern Ireland.

Labour MP Jess Phillips issued a similar challenge to the new Prime Minister, writing on Twitter: “I assume that Sunak will ensure that he understands the country he wants to govern by ensuring that his family get all their healthcare from the NHS and that he would send his children to school alongside your children in a state school.”

In terms of his Cabinet, 65% of the ministers Sunak has appointed had a private education including his three most senior colleagues: Chancellor Jeremy Hunt (Charterhouse School in Surrey), Foreign Secretary James Cleverly (Colfe’s School in Greenwich, south-east London), and Home Secretary Suella Braverman (Heathfield School in Pinner, north-west London).

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The proportion is broadly similar to Liz Truss’s Cabinet (68%) and Boris Johnson’s first Cabinet (64%), but much higher than the level in Theresa May’s 2016 Cabinet (30%).

It is also up on the figure for David Cameron’s 2015 Cabinet (50%) and well above the 32% in Tony Blair and Gordon Brown’s Cabinets, though close to the 62% in the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition in 2010.

The analysis has been published by social mobility charity The Sutton Trust, and it also shows nearly a quarter (23%) of Sunak’s Cabinet went to a comprehensive school while one in 10 attended a grammar school.

Among those who went to a comprehensive are Leader of the Commons Penny Mordaunt, Transport Secretary Mark Harper and – perhaps symbolically – Education Secretary Gillian Keegan.

Sir Peter Lampl, founder and chairman of the Sutton Trust, said: “Rishi Sunak faces unprecedented challenges as he enters No 10.

“In his new Cabinet, 65% went to private schools – over nine times the number in the general population – and 45% went to Oxbridge, more than double the average for all MPs.

“While his Cabinet is marginally more representative than Truss’s, Tuesday’s appointments highlight how unevenly spread opportunities to enter the most prestigious positions continue to be.

“Making the most of Britain’s talent regardless of background must be a priority.”

Sunak continues the tradition of nearly every UK prime minister since the Second World War having studied at Oxford University.

The one exception is Gordon Brown, who went to Edinburgh University.

Downing Street has been contacted for comment.