Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
An independent school is a school which is not dependent upon national or local government for financing its operation and is instead operated by tuition charges, gifts, and perhaps the investment yield of an endowment.
Though the terms "independent school" and "private school" are essentially synonymous, the latter has elitist connotations for many and the term "independent school" has been encouraged by the backers of such schools, especially since the 1970s. In terms of categorization, "independent schools" includes "parochial schools", while to many people "private schools" does not; although for others, independent schools are those without religious affiliations.
The term independent school is also occasionally used in the U.S. as a reference to a system of schools operated by a so-called "independent school district". In this case, the term "independent" generally means that the district constitutes its own authority and is not part of another entity of government such a city or a county.
In the United Kingdom the more prestigious independent schools are known as public schools. Membership of the Headmasters' and Headmistresses' Conference is often considered as what defines a school as a public school.
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