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Mr Gove, after-school clubs need to learn from family life

20 April 2014 11:23
The intimate family supper is key to any child's intellectual and emotional development. (Photo by Keystone View/FPG/Getty Images)

In news to warm Michael Gove’s heart, a new survey carried out by the Association of Teachers and Lecturers has found that children as young a four are now routinely… Continue reading


Elizabeth Truss: look at Wales to see what Labour would do with education

3 April 2014 17:56
Euston Arch before it was knocked down in 1961. Photo: PA.

Want to see what Labour would do with Michael Gove’s reforms? Just look at Wales, says Elizabeth Truss. At the Spectator’s schools conference this morning, the Childcare Minister used the… Continue reading


Why Tristram Hunt is wrong about free schools

3 April 2014 10:09
Tristram Hunt at the Spectator schools conference this morning.

‘I’ve come to exorcise you lot,’ said Tristram Hunt cheerfully, as he turned up to deliver the keynote speech in The Spectator’s schools conference today. He had come to explain… Continue reading


Michael Gove attacks Tristram Hunt for not knowing difference between education and health

24 March 2014 16:23
Labour Attempt To Hold On To Stoke As The BNP Target The Seat

Education questions is always interesting in the sense that the main players are quite energetic and keen for debate and there is a genuine divide now between the two main… Continue reading


It’s time for the Tories to rally to the aspiration agenda

13 March 2014 17:59

School reform is economically essential for Britain’s future success, morally necessary for a fairer, more socially mobile society and politically essential for a centre-right party that wants to show that… Continue reading


Tristram Hunt should worry about failure in council schools, not free schools

13 March 2014 12:10
Tristram Hunt – enemy of choice. Image: Getty

Tristram Hunt seems delighted today that Britain’s first profit-seeking school has been deemed ‘inadequate’ by Ofsted. The scores of council-run failing schools, several in his Stoke constituency, don’t seem to… Continue reading


Gove, Cameron and the myth of ‘state vs private’ schools

10 March 2014 12:51
Image: Getty

Will David Cameron send his kids to a state secondary school, as Michael Gove is doing? Today’s papers are following up James Forsyth’s suggestion that Cameron will slum it as… Continue reading


Don’t reduce class sizes: the OECD’s lessons for education in the UK

5 March 2014 17:34
Image: Getty

So much of the education debate is about how UK schools perform relative to those in other countries – this week Liz Truss reported back from her visit to Shanghai… Continue reading


Should you take a degree to earn money – or to learn how to live?

5 March 2014 15:28
The value of an arts degree? Illustration: Michael Heath

The motion ‘An Arts Degree is a Waste of Time and Money’ was roundly defeated at last night’s Spectator debate, after a lively debate in which Will Self took on… Continue reading


The coalition has stabilised childcare costs – so why do headlines suggest they’re rising?

4 March 2014 16:10
Image: Getty

You may have heard about the Family and Childcare Trust’s survey today, about the costs of childcare. You wouldn’t know it from the headlines but it actually found that in… Continue reading


Does Tristram Hunt think that choice in education should be only for the rich?

2 March 2014 13:48
Tristram Hunt on the Sunday Politics today. Photo: BBC.

At last – Labour has made its intentions over education clear. Throughout his interview on the Sunday Politics today, Tristram Hunt showed that Labour has switched allegiances to adults, not… Continue reading


How to repair a free school – the next stage of Michael Gove’s reforms

28 February 2014 15:36
First Aid Kit: IES free school alumni

Any government can set out on a journey of reform – the question is whether they can stay on course upon hitting turbulence. The coalition is entering this phase now.… Continue reading


Katie Hopkins: A liberal arts degree is a waste of time

14 February 2014 10:58
Most of us aren't as bright as Socrates

Let’s face it. Most of us aren’t all that bright. Sixteen per cent of us have an IQ below 85 – that’s about the level of intelligence you need to… Continue reading


Feminism must pay attention to the boys let down by our education system

4 February 2014 12:39

The Universities and Colleges Admission Service (UCAS) has released its latest admission statistics, and they aren’t pretty. Of the 580,000 people that applied for places at British institutions, 333,700 of… Continue reading


Michael Gove’s speech on improving schools – full text and audio

3 February 2014 12:52
Image: Getty

This morning Michael Gove gave a speech at the London Academy of Excellence on improving ‘bog standard’ state schools. Here’s what he said:- listen to ‘Michael Gove’s speech on improving… Continue reading


Liberal arts education has been under attack – we need to rediscover its profound wisdom

30 January 2014 15:17
Image: Getty

England did so deplorably in the Ashes in part because of an obsession with data, including minutely detailed plans on diet and exercise. Excessive bureaucracy can squeeze the lifeblood out… Continue reading


Take note, Fiona Millar – you can’t close the class divide by closing private schools

30 January 2014 11:19
Toffs and toughs. Image: Getty

If there was a coalition to keep the poor down in Britain, Fiona Millar would be its chairman. If a wicked emperor were to seize Britain and want to make… Continue reading


Tristram Hunt needs to do his homework

17 January 2014 14:31
Image: Getty

As part of Ed Miliband’s modestly-titled plan to ‘rebuild the middle class’, shadow Education Secretary Tristram Hunt this week set out Labour’s new policy for raising standards of teaching. A… Continue reading


Ten things that went badly right in Britain in 2013

20 December 2013 14:59
Caught Smoking

This was supposed to be the year of strife, strikes, misery and more. Instead, to the surprise of Britain’s politicians, things have instead gone badly right. I look at them… Continue reading


Ignore Margaret Hodge and the BBC – free schools are working

11 December 2013 16:58
Ignore this women. Image: Getty

Today’s NAO report on free schools has recognised the ‘clear progress’ we have made opening 174 schools in three years with significantly lower costs than Labour’s school programmes. But, as Isabel… Continue reading


The psychosis of the PISA report and best practices

10 December 2013 15:44
Image: Getty

The enemies of school reform have something of a champion in Finland’s Pasi Sahlberg. In a recent comment piece for the Guardian, he discusses his self-invented bogeyman, the ‘Global Education… Continue reading


The PISA rankings have exposed Labour’s policies on education

3 December 2013 13:52
Image: Getty

Michael Gove wants to blame Labour for today’s PISA rankings, in which the UK has fallen five places to 26th, and Labour wants to blame Michael Gove. So in this… Continue reading


PISA rankings are a shot in the arm for education reformers

3 December 2013 10:52
General Election - Education

Like measuring water by the handful, calculating the success of the education system at a time of rampant grade inflation is an impossible task. If exam results go up every year… Continue reading


Failing free school to be shut

22 November 2013 11:56
Image: Getty

The Department for Education is determined to show that it’ll deal quickly with any failing free school. This morning it has announced that the Al-Madinah free school in Derby will… Continue reading


Rebutting #govevreality — a video of untruths and lazy thinking

11 November 2013 14:39
Screen Shot 2013-11-11 at 14.00.57

The blob strikes again. A video called Gove vs Reality is doing the rounds, taking pot shots at Michael Gove’s education policies, or ‘challenging his assumptions and the evidence he… Continue reading