At times, says the Education Secretary, the post he holds requires “a bold and vociferous and constant presence”. But “at other times less so”.
Putting teachers and heads in charge has consistently allowed schools and pupils to excel. We must continue to put our trust in them.
Schools have changed a lot since we were pupils. But the way in which they are held to account hasn’t moved on very much in a quarter of a century.
Behind most disorder is the idea of anxiety. A great deal of that is caused by a feeling that the pupil can’t do their work.
There is no evidence of funding cuts reducing school standards. But Ofsted does need enough staff to thoroughly assess the performance of classroom teachers.
I was glad to see the Prime Minister and the Education Secretary doing so recently – particularly now that Rayner is clear she will scrap the programme.
Ofsted has judged us “outstanding.” Six years ago it found us “inadequate”. One big achievement is that we are now relying much less on agency staff.
It is funded at a lower level than schools, and yet is expected to put right much that has gone wrong. Technical courses need higher esteem.
Despite our budget being cut, we have achieved bold reforms with libraries, children’s services, broadband roll out and business rates retention. We are open for business.
Where children are scared to go to school, their parents are being threatened with truancy action and given the option to home educate.
The perpetrators of school violence and disruption inflict more harm on the education of other pupils, and to the morale of teachers, than they do on themselves.
Conservative policies to date have done little to improve the situation, and have sometimes made it worse. These bureaucratic impositions must be lifted.
Previously the parks were neglected and the roads full of potholes. The Conservatives have started to turn the borough around.
Free schools and academies have found that setting improves standards. It’s time to stop giving huge public funds to academics who disregard this evidence.
As Labour councils around us abolish libraries, we’re building new ones. We are working flat out to win the local elections. Our message is: “Keep moving forward.”