All posts tagged 'Michael-Gove'

Leave history lessons to those who know

by The Codgers' Club Friday, January 17 2014

by Alan Watkins

There are times when Codgers despair about colleagues in journalism. Some move for the big bucks of PR where truth is frequently manipulated.

Others become MPs. Occasionally they achieve the highest offices.

One such is Michael Gove, the present Secretary of State for Education, who looks like a living, breathing, speaking newspaper caricature.

He has come up with all sorts of doubtful ideas since he gained big power four years after first being elected.

The ex-News International man is endeavouring to change our perceptions of the First World War, now that no one who took part in the numerous debacles is left to argue.

Mr Gove (on the centenary of the outbreak) wants to convince us it was a war fought by intelligent generals and upper class brains, who knew what it was like to be stuck up to your knees in mud as shells and bullets rained down on you from behind clouds of chlorine gas and not out of touch and hiding miles behind the front line.

Mr Gove wants us to believe the written orders to keep to strict timetables of attack were post-war propaganda.

That spreading out in a line across a landscape devoid of trees, buildings and any form of protection, and walking into the fire of machine guns were the figments of latter day left-wing satirists. (My grandfather was one of the lucky ones.)

That millions of pals died because of their own stupidity, not because they were ordered to walk (“don’t run!”), with survival a fluke and execution by your officers a fact if you showed fear.

If you believe his recent article in a national newspaper, Mr Gove would have you believe the First World War was jolly hockey sticks, the nearest anyone got to violence was Christmas games of football and that being tied to a gun as punishment for arguing was a figment of the imagination of left wing socialists (one of the last Old Contemptibles told me he was tied to a gun wheel and he was as right wing as they come).

Mr Gove should leave the teaching of facts to those far better able to look after our children’s knowledge.

And leave the lessons of the war to end all wars to be learned by all.

Tags: ,

Gove proceeds with caution over grammar plans

by Paul on Politics, by political editor Paul Francis Monday, November 25 2013

There is some restlessness at County Hall over the length of time it is taking Michael Gove to decide on plans for a 'new' grammar school in Sevenoaks.

Politically, this delay is confounding those who think that if the Conservative party - and indeed Mr Gove - want to improve their stock, this would be a fairly straightforward way of doing so. (Especially as UKIP is making a clear commitment to restore selection).

Behind the scenes, it would appear the issue troubling the Department for Education is the same one that has troubled Kent County Council.

Namely, the question of whether the proposal is legal, given that there is a prohibition on opening new selective schools.

The argument of campaigners and KCC is the scheme represents an extension of an existing school to meet a demand for selective places, caused largely by demographic factors.

But the argument is clearly finely balanced. KCC wanted to assure itself that its case was solid by engaging the services of a specialist education lawyer.

It will not disclose the lawyer's advice. In response to a Freedom of Information request, it said the advice (which cost £6,150) was confidential and it was not in the public interest to release it.

In doing so, however, it implicitly acknowledges the issue of legality is one over which there may be persuasive grounds on both sides.

The reply to our request stated "it would not be in the public interest for privileged legal advice to be revealed to a party who can then use that advice to further his or her own case. Releasing the advice would mean making it available to opponents of the annex scheme - effectively using public money to fund both sides of a potential judicial review, referral to the Secretary of State or to the Schools Adjudicator."

Clearly, the advice provided to KCC was that the case could be argued both ways and it would be a surprise if the advice the DfE is getting did not say the same.

Frustrating as it is for those supporting the plans, you can understand why the DfE is treading carefully.

Given that grammar schools still stir up political controversy, Mr Gove will want to ensure that any decision he takes is watertight and won't trigger any protracted legal wrangling.


The news that Thanet South MP Laura Sandys is to stand down at the next election has come as something of a surprise.

She is a well-regarded MP and judging by the reaction to her decision, considered to be highly diligent on behalf of her constituency.

It presents a tricky situation for the Conservatives, who will be acutely conscious of the speculation that Thanet South has been a seat that UKIP leader Nigel Farage may have his eye on.

Laura Sandys has never made any secret that she is on the pro-European wing of the party. It will be interesting to see whether local Conservatives opt for someone who veers in the other direction.

Tags: , , , ,
Categories: Precept

Kent gets caught in grammar vs free school tussle

by Paul on Politics, by political editor Paul Francis Thursday, March 14 2013

To say that Conservatives at County Hall are miffed is something of an understatement.

The news that the government has intervened to say that the site Kent County Council wanted for a new grammar school annexe in Sevenoaks should instead be offered to a free school has gone down like a lead balloon.

Wrangle over Kent's grammar school plan >>>

This is, after all, a Conservative government where there remains plenty of residual support for selective schooling and plenty of backbenchers who think that among David Cameron's' most catastrophic decisions was to turn the party away from supporting the return of the 11-plus.

The irony here is that KCC had come up with a plan, widely supported by local parents, for additional grammar school places in an area without a selective school. It is consistent with the government's own policy of allowing existing schools to expand where there is an issue of lack of places.

The problem is that the coalition has another policy to deal with unmet parental demand and that is free schools.

And on this occasion, at least for the moment, free school plans are deemed more important. So, the Kent case for more grammar places has been undermined by a decision by the schools minster that the Sevenoaks site of the former Wildernesse School be handed to the proponents of the Trinity Free School.

Why? Partly, I supect, because the government is concerned that it is way off its target for several hundred free schools to be open by 2015 and wants to maximise "buy in" from those behind such plans for new schools. And while selection is important in Kent and a few other areas, it is not across most of the rest of the country where grammars do not exist.

The government is desperate to promote the idea that parents can do something to enhance choice by opening free schools and it is a message that has much greater resonance with parents where grammars are not a feature of the local education lanscape as they are in Kent. 

County Hall Tories are livid not least because they see a political dividend from being seen to support more grammar places, which like it or not, remain extremely popular with parents here. With an election in May, they were probably hoping to plaster election leaflets with the claim that they were acting to respond to parents' wishes by extending selection.

And the decision to offer the site to a free school is the worst example of top-down politics which will raise all sorts of questions about the government's commitment to localism and not interfering with councils. KCC has had other tussles with the secretary of state Michael Gove, notably over the scrapping of the BSF project. It joined a legal action brought by other councils challenging the decision and it was not welcomed by Mr Gove.

Now KCC is suggesting it might have to go into battle through the courts again on a fairly arcane issue surrounding the question of whether the government has correctly interpreted its own legislation about handing sites to others for schools where the site is already occuppied by another school (albeit temporarily).

The view from the campaigners is that the Sevenoaks plan for more grammar places is not dead in the water and that once Mr Gove is apprised of the background he will be won round to seeing the case.

Given the rather fractious relationship he has had with KCC and its leadership in the past, he may need some convincing.


It would be interesting to know exactly when KCC was aware of the government's thinking on the move to offer the site at the former Wildernesse School to the backers of the Trinity Free School.

KCC was very keen to let everyone know that it had chosen the site for its grammar annexe and got into a spot of bother about it - it now looks rather like a pre-emptive strike although one that has yet to pay off. 



Tags: , , ,
Categories: Education

Kent's 'new' grammar school testing the Tories

by Paul on Politics, by political editor Paul Francis Friday, January 11 2013

Whatever else the Conservative-run Kent County Council does this year, one thing is clear: it will be moving heaven and earth to ensure that its plan to open a grammar school annexe in west Kent come to fruition.

Of course, on one level, the argument is simply about the authority responding to a genuine grievance held by many parents about the lack of provision of selective places in Sevenoaks.

Kent sets its sights on new grammar annexe>>>

But the politics - and politicking - involved goes to the heart of a debate about grammar schools that has simmered and occasionally come to the boil within the Conservative party ever since David Cameron, in something of an educational Clause Four moment, decided that his party would not support any further selection and the idea of more grammars.

Kent Tories have never made much effort to conceal their unhappiness with this U-turn, believing fervently that many parents actually want more selection, rather than less.

For many, selective schooling is something of an article of faith and have been aghast at the party turning its back on the policy.

So, the possibility of adding more grammar school places, through new arrangements allowing the expansion of popular schools and where there is a proven shortage of available places, has been seized on with something approaching Messianic zeal in Kent.

Which goes a little way to account for the fanfare surrounding the announcement that Kent County Council has identified a potential site for its new annexe. 

A press release unveiling the news was about as overtly political as you could get without breaching the protocols on local government publicity that are designed to prevent councils from issuing anything that might be construed as seeking to solicit support for a particular party.

Education cabinet member Cllr Mike Whiting was even quoted as saying that parents not just in Kent "but across the country" were relying on "Conservative administrations across the country to champion and provide" more selective schooling. How that got cleared for release is anybody's guess.

The release was crammed with supportive statements from various Sevenoaks county councillors (all Conservative) and the Conservative MP Michael Fallon. The only surprise was that they obviously could not prevail on Michael Gove to provide a suitable soundbite - but I daresay that will come in due course.

I understand there has been some tensions behind the scenes about how this was all handled. The ruling Conservative administration at County Hall won't be especially bothered, even if it is lacking a rather vital piece of the jigsaw - namely which existing grammar schools are going to partner or sponsor the annexe.

What matters from the political, rather than the educational perspective, is that Kent Conservatives can go into this May's council election campaign being able to underline - unlike the national party - that they stand firmly behind selection and grammars and are actually doing something about it.

Not just so they can bolster support from within their own ranks but so they can back the other parties into a corner - not least UKIP, who I am told, are fielding candidates in every single division and have been scornful of the Conservative's decision to abandon support for selection.



The omission of any details about would-be sponsors for the grammar annexe is intriguing. The line from KCC is that it is making sure everything is watertight before going public on who might be involved.

There will have to be two partner schools but quite who they may be is anyone's guess. There have been rumours that the council has found it hard to get anyone interested.

One interesting aspect of the announcement was the apparent support of the Knole Academy, which is currently using part of the Wildernesse School site, for the masterplan.

Could it become one of the sponsors in some way or have some other involvement, perhaps in helping provide additional support for those who do end up attending the grammar annexe?


With most council decisions, there is some kind of process - consistent with the authority's constitution - by which the decision is considered, sometimes consulted on and agreed.

It is a process that generally speaking happens in the public domain, with supporting reports and other documents that anyone can access.

And on occasion, decisions might get called in by backbenchers so they can chew it over and ask questions. Indeed, KCC is so keen on ensuring that councillors do this before decisions happen that it has set up an entirely new system of cabinet "pre-scrutiny" committees.

However, the decision-making process involved in identifying a site for its new grammar school has gone through no such process. The "decision" was announced via, as I've pointed out, a triumphantly worded press release.

It's precisely the sort of thing that makes people like me rather cynical and suspicious that KCC can often be more interested in the political PR value of its activities above anything else.

Next week, we will get the judgement from Ofsted about how well Kent's most vulnerable children are looked after, following the damning assessment two years ago. It will be interesting to see how this may be spun.

Tags: , , , , ,
Categories: Precept

Has Michael Gove's dog eaten his Freedom of Information homework?

by Paul on Politics, by political editor Paul Francis Sunday, October 14 2012

Education secretary Michael Gove, as we all know, is something of a stickler for standards. But when it comes to his own department, standards are something that his officials seem to have a rather casual - not to say cavalier - approach to, at least so far as Freedom of Information goes.

A year ago, I lodged a request with the DfE asking for any information it held in private emails exchanged between Mr Gove and his officials, along with Kent County Council, relating to the council's involvement in a legal dispute with the department after the abrupt cancellation of the Building Schools for the Future programme.

The request was made last October and should have been responded to within 20 working days. To date, I have not had a formal response as required under the law; I have not even had a refusal notice telling me that the DfE does hold information but isn't prepared to give it to me.

The request I made was triggered by the disclosure of a leaked email obtained by the Financial Times, written by Mr Gove using his private account, sent to special advisers and a civil servant around the same subject. This led to a number of FOI requests on the subject but the DfE has sought to argue that as private account emails, they are not government-related and, therefore under the law, exempt from the Act.

That argument has been demolished by the Information Commissioner (the FOI watchdog) who has ruled that it is the content of emails that matters when it comes to determining whether they are captured by FOI - not whether they are sent from a private account.

Frustrated by the DfE's prevarication and despite any number of (unanswered) reminders, I eventually made a formal complaint to the Commissioner, who has now ruled that the DfE must give an answer within ten days.

It could still reject my request, of course. It could tell me that any emails that might have been sent no longer exist (how convenient). It could give me everything I have asked for (being optimistic here). All I'd like is an answer of some description.

Whatever the outcome, the episode is a good illustration of why journalists retain a healthy scepticism when it comes to the utterances of politicians who preach the virtues of transparency and accountability and then do completely the opposite. So far as Mr Gove is concerned, it is a perhaps a case of "could do better." Maybe he should be served with a notice to improve...


Should Kent County Council be taking the axe to funding for sports development? The Conservative administration's line is that a cut of £200k is acceptable and justifiable because it it simply taking the budget back to pre-Olympic levels.

But opposition is growing and there is dissent in the Tory ranks.

Cllr Mike Jarvis, a backbencher, says it is wrong and risks squandering Kent's Olympic legacy because the authority should be building on the interest in sport the Olympics has prompted and using it as a catalyst to get more people active - entirely reasonable arguments. KCC says that it is protecting funding for the Kent School Games, which is true.

But they started before the Olympics and it is unclear what additional plans the authority may have to further develop new programmes or schemes - and without any money, it is rather hard to see how they might happen.

Cllr Jarvis rather tellingly points out that KCC spends colossal sums on external consultants and suggests that if the council is looking to save money, this ought to be an area the council takes a look at first.

Tags: , , , ,
Categories: parish council | Politics

Hard luck if Ofsted visits on a bad day

by The Codgers' Club Friday, February 10 2012

by Alan Watkins

One could almost hear the discussion a few months ago between Jim Hacker, if he had responsibility for education, and the chief inspector of schools at Ofsted.

It probably went something like this:

Hacker: Right! We’ve been in power now for more than a year, and the schools are not providing evidence that their kids are better off under our parties.

Inspector: That’s because ....

Hacker: No excuses! My job depends on showing improvements. Change the ground rules.

Inspector: As I tried to explain, Minister ...

Hacker: All those schools with satisfactory records! It’s not good enough. Re-grade them as unsatisfactory.

Inspector: Yes, Minister.

Good belly laughs all round.

The trouble with Yes Minister and Jim Hacker was that it was always so close to the truth.

Not that Michael Gove would have done anything like this, of course.

I was chatting with a head the other day. Her school is officially satisfactory with good grounds for Ofsted to say it should achieve a “good” rating.

Since she was appointed she has transformed her school from failing to the point where it can see an excellence label on the horizon. You would think she would be delighted – she’s not!

Instead of being praised, she now faces the sack if surprise visits from Ofsted are still “satisfactory” within the next two years.

She (as well as her governors and all her teaching team) face ignominy.

They will be sacked and replaced by a team who will manage to tick a few more boxes on the Ofsted checklist.

They have also found the rules keep changing that set their targets.

There are no problems with expecting improvement. Nor is there blame to be had in trying to achieve perfection.

What is completely ignored by the 'tick box’ culture encouraged by the inspectorate is the nature of the community served by schools.

My friend’s primary is typical of many in Kent and Medway. It has a mix of children – and a mix of parents. Most are responsible. Some are not. At home some children are ignored.

“For some parents – too many by far – children are status symbols,” I was told.

“When they come to an after-school dance they are made up to the nines, dressed in the latest fashion – they look like tarts, but they are only six and seven-year-olds.

“Some of my mothers are 19 and 20 – how old were they when they had their children? What understanding do they have of parenting, life and all the other skills? The answer is little or none.”

I often see mums pushing pushchairs and chatting on mobiles as their child tries unsuccessfully to get their attention.

“It’s the same in the home. Our children learn from nine to three – then they go home where there are no books, inappropriate television and violent video games, no house manners ...

"Some of our kids come to school without the basics like toilet training. They don’t speak. They have few personal skills.

“Parents arrive in the area and their children are suddenly dropped on us. We have kids from certain families where children come and go as they please.

“We have kids who arrive unable to understand a word of English. The trouble is the inspectors don’t recognise local problems such as this. All they are interested in is the ticks.”

Like lots of satisfactory schools, her team have been told they are unsatisfactory, coasting, not pulling their weight, failures ...

“If my school has not improved I shall retire – I’ve never said that before, but I shall.”

At another school there are dozens of children whose first language is not English.

They have appeared as their families move into north Kent. When the inspectors arrive there will be black marks against their place of learning for failing to teach them in the few weeks that they have been on the school roll.

There isn’t a school where conscientious teachers do not leave every day with bags full of work to mark, to check or to advise. They have forms to complete to confirm their projects are working, reports to produce on the ordinary and the exceptional, and pages to explain why a child has been punished and how.

They then work at home until midnight night after night after night. Is this what society really expects?

Surely our schools should be happy places of learning where teachers can pass on their experiences, and bring out the best in the children? Hard luck if Ofsted arrives on a bad day.

We may lose good heads if this happens – and is that really what we want?

Tags: , , , ,
Categories: Education

Ssshhh...don't mention National Libraries Day. And Gove stumbles over FOI

by Paul on Politics, by political editor Paul Francis Wednesday, February 1 2012

IF you visit a library in Kent this Saturday, you probably won't notice anything different. And you certainly won't come across any special event or activity.

Odd? Not especially, until you realise that it is National Libraries Day, a now annual event to celebrate libraries.

Kent County Council is facing claims it is 'snubbing' the national day of celebration from several campaigners who have questioned why there are no events planned to mark the event.

Unlike many other authorities, KCC has opted not to put on a specific programme for the day. Inevitably, that has led to claims the council is downplaying the event because it does not want to draw attention to a shake-up that some fear could mean cutbacks.

For its part, the council says it has a year-round programme of activities and it is focusing on promoting those. There's no major scandal here. But a briefing note from managers to staff appears a little sensitive over the fact that nothing is going on.

The note says staff approached about National Libraries Day “must refer all enquiries from members of the public, community groups and organisations to your district manager."

The memo says: “As NLD is a Saturday, the busiest day of the week for us, all our staff will be fully engaged in helping people to use our wide range of services. There is much to celebrate about libraries in Kent and we will mark National Libraries Day in the best way possible - by continuing to deliver the best quality service to our very many satisfied customers.”

One council library worker told us that staff had effectively been silenced.

In a statement, KCC said: “Managers were briefed on National Libraries Day and advice was given to staff on how to deal with enquiries. The message reminded staff it is not appropriate to engage in campaigning activity which undermines Kent County Council’s commitment to the library service. However we do fully support the National Library Day’s aim to celebrate libraries, librarians and library staff in all sectors and there are more than 14,500 events throughout the year being held in local libraries, from children’s reading sessions and coffee mornings to computer training sessions.”

CILIP, the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals, which backs the event, said: “We want to see as many local authorities get involved as possible. It is disappointing but there’s nothing mandatory that says councils must be involved.”

Ironically, the low key approach adopted by KCC has only served to draw attention to its lack of activity - which was surely not intended.


Education secretary Michael Gove faced MPs to answer questions on a range of subjects this week. He was characteristically confident but less convincing when pressed about the use of private emails by him and his advisers to conduct government business.

He and his department have faced claims that they have done so to avoid the public gaze over potentially sensitive issues. It was because of this that we asked - via the Freedom of Information Act - whether he or his advisers had done so in relation to Kent county council's challenge through the High Court over the cancellation of the Building Schools for the Future project.

That was three months ago. We're still waiting for a response. 


Tags: , , ,
Categories: Crematorium | Precept

Perfect solution for the royal boat – the Medway Queen

by The Codgers' Club Friday, January 27 2012

by Peter Cook

Personally, I don’t have a problem with buying the Queen a boat for her Jubilee. And here’s the perfect solution.

Chugging up river soon, resplendent in her new steel overcoat, paddle wheels thrashing and puffing up smoke like an ancient mariner with an ounce of Navy Shag , will be the good ol’ Medway Queen. Hooray!

What better vessel could our monarch hope for? A Queen fit for a Queen.

They have so much in common. They come from the same generation, both saw service during the war, and both have brought delight to thousands.

Of course Her Maj will have to restrict her cruising to the Thames and Medway Estuary. But you don’t want to go charging off to faraway foreign climes when you’re well into your eighties.

And what price Boris Island when the Queen of England rules the very waves on which they hope it will become established.

Given a stair-lift, the Duke of Edinburgh would be able to relive his naval days by whizzing up to the bridge now and again and taking the helm.

“Glance across to port, Sir, and you will see the four LPG gas holders of the Apocalypse, each one as big as the Albert Hall, named after your wife’s great great grandfather, I believe Sir.

“Left hand down a bit. We don’t want to hit the poor old Richard Montgomery and unleash a tsunami that will have us surfing back to London quicker than a Red Arrow pilot on a jet-ski.”

What larks, as a famous estuary character used to say. They could call in to the Old House at Home at Queenborough for a pub lunch, swan round to Margate for a go on the scenic railway – which should be restored by then – and then nip across to Southend for a pint of whelks and to catch the end of the pier show. A perfect day.

Of course, there is a Royal precedent too.

Good Queen Vic used to chug down to the Isle of Grain on the Hoo Peninsula Railway, to meet her Germanic relatives, who presumably arrived by paddle-steamer.

So, Michael Gove, there you have it. You need search no more.

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Setback for Kent schools: Gove's revenge? Plus: Kent MPs at the hacking hearings

by Paul on Politics, by political editor Paul Francis Wednesday, July 20 2011

THERE may be some who think Michael Gove has extracted revenge on Kent County Council for its temerity in taking the government to court over the cancellation of secondary school re-building projects.

They are wrong. It is true that KCC may not be, as Eric Pickles might say, the best of chums with the DfE but the government was never likely to revisit its original decision to scrap the BSF scheme and agree to the redevelopment plans for Thanet and Gravesham schools. How could it, after Gove was so critical of the previous government's programme and its costly bureaucracy?

KCC took a risk over its Judicial Review but on balance, it was a risk that has - notwithstanding the decision by Michael Gove - had some dividends. The legal costs and the contractual liabilities incurred by KCC look like being fully recovered, which is good news for the taxpayer.

And the government cannot now be unaware of the plight of those schools in Kent that urgently need redeveloping. 

What matters now is whether they will qualify for help under the new 'low cost' PFI scheme being proposed by the DfE. £500m sounds like a lot of money but less so when you consider that every education authority in the country will be pitching for a share of.


Two Kent backbenchers were involved in yesterday's dramatic hacking hearings. Folkestone and Hythe MP Damian Collins was on the media select committee and was among the more effective inquisitors, particularly in his line of questioning towards Rebekah Brooks - her answers underlined the view that the main fault was one of senior editors and managers not really having a grip on what was going on and being kept out of the loop.

He didn't quite get to the point of asking explicitly how it was that editors and managers satisfied themselves of the sources (and methods) used to get various scoops but did extract from Brooks an acknowledgement that it was - as the MP put it - incredible that information about the hacking of Milly Dowler's phone was passed to Surrey police without, apparently, anyone sharing that fact with anyone in an executive position at NI.

Rochester and Strood MP Mark Reckless has blogged here about his line of questioning at the home affairs select committee.


Tags: , , , , ,
Categories: Politics

The academy revolution's slow start

by Paul on Politics, by political editor Paul Francis Thursday, September 2 2010

There's not exactly been a huge rush among Kent’s schools to become one of Michael Gove’s new-fangled academies.

In fact, only one of the county’s 600-odd schools is in the academy vanguard of about 120 that was established this week.

A handful more in Kent will join the bandwagon in October.

Critics have suggested that all this points to a less than ringing endorsement of the programme. (At County Hall, I daresay politicians and officials will no doubt be secretly relieved they have been spared a wholesale defection)

I think they could be wrong. Most schools will have decided to wait and see what the programme has to offer and how others fare before jumping in with two feet into an initiative that has promised much but in a rather imprecise and intangible way.

I don’t expect the initial trickle to become a flood but we have been here before. When Margaret Thatcher offered schools the chance to opt out of council control and become grant maintained, many governors stayed their hand but were eventually won over – not least by the promise of extra cash. It took time for the policy to become popular.

If schools see others reaping benefits and enjoying their new-found freedoms, particularly as budget cuts hit home, we will soon be seeing a splintering of the system in Kent and elsewhere.


Mind you, it's interesting to see Michael Gove set out plans for failing primary schools to become academies. I'm confused. nder the government's proposals, I thought it was - at least in the first instance - only "outstanding" schools that could join the scheme.


NEW Labour’s temerity over grammar schools was powerfully illustrated by the fiendishly complicated ballot legislation it devised to supposedly offer parents a chance to vote on scrapping them.

The legislation introduced in 1998 was so skewed against grammar opponents, it was used just once. Which was precisely what Tony Blair wanted.

So, what do those vying for the party leadership think of the issue of selection?

Step forward contender Ed Miliband who says in an interview that as leader he would take a look at the legislation.

He’s couched his promise in a rather safe way, mind you, as you can tell:

"I think that an issue has been raised about the system of ballots for grammar schools and whether the right people get a chance to vote in the ballots. I'm not giving you a definitive answer, I'm saying it is an issue to be looked at."

A politician not giving a definitive answer? Whatever next?


A politician not giving a definitive answer? Whatever next?


Tags: , , , ,
Categories: Local Politics | National Politics | Education

Got a bee in your bonnet?

Bloggy BeeIf you have a voice, and would like it to be heard, why not consider writing a blog for our site?

Click here to send us a message and let us know!

Welcome to our blogs!

Our Blogs

Tag cloud

Top Posts of the Week

Topics of Conversation