Mr Gove has been a great Education Secretary
If someone had posted that on this forum then I'd be accusing them of trolling. And I doubt I'd be convinced by any excuses of "honest opinion".
The trouble with being the Education Secretary is that you can only really be judged some years after you have left office.
And very often the role of Education Secretary seems to be held by a politician hoping for bigger things who wants to cause as few ripples as possible with the teaching unions.
The only two Education Secretaries in the last 17 years who don't conform to that stereotype are David Blunkett (1997 to 2001) and Gove.
Both of them identified the fact that the education system is letting down working class kids, and both were vilified for their troubles by the National Union of Teachers.
Both of them thoroughly prepared their brief while they were in opposition. Blunkett once famously had to hide in a broom cupboard, even before he took office, to escape enraged NUT members.
The truth is that the Education Secretary is dealing with vested interests that see any changes as a threat to their members' terms and conditions, which is where their priorities lie. The only change they will accept is more money being thrown at them, which is what happened when Gordon Brown came to power. And Brown threw money at everything, creating a financial black hole.
But as long as most middle class parents can afford to buy houses in areas that give them access to schools with a decent intake, they will go along with this, without caring too much about schools in poor neighbourhoods.
That sense of smug satisfaction and a desire not to rock the boat seems apparent on this thread, but in my opinion it just isn't good enough.
Because of my role in our company I receive hundreds of emails from young kids at school in some of the less affluent Rugby League towns telling me they want to write about the game for a living, and asking for work experience. And it's heartbreaking to have to turn them down because they have never been taught even the basics of good English.
I don't know why this is, and why teachers can't instil some decent writing skills into these kids.
I feel strongly about this because I came from a school myself that had kids from a very poor background. I was the only boy in my school year who passed the old eleven-plus, so I can see what low expectations lead to.
Blunkett and Gove, in their own ways, both wanted to do something about this problem, and both tried.
In the meantime we are falling farther and farther behind our rivals when the educational attainments of our kids are measured against them.
And I can't see any other politician on the horizon who is prepared to do anything about it.
Anything for an easy life.
- GeordieSaint likes this