March 12, 2014

There's still much for Gove to do

According to Ben Brogan and James Forsyth, Tory MPs are sniping at Michael Gove.

Forsyth puts it in the context of the succession to Cameron - as if Osborne had the ghost of a chance of being an effective and popular leader. (He has as much chance of that as Theresa May - that is, none. Any Tory who disagrees should get out more.) Gove, it is said, would support Osborne, even though that would be (in his word) bonkeroony. So Boris's acolytes are sniping at him.

Brogan has it that Gove has done all he can do at Education and needs a fresh challenge. This too is bonkers.

At a recent performance by the clever Fascinating Aida, one of the songs to get the most enthusiastic applause was a long and witless diatribe attacking education reform and even Ofsted. Its theme was that teachers were doing fine, thank you, and government should get off their backs. The audience loved it.

Remember a Question Time last year when a school student said some of his teachers had been more interested in their pay cheques than their subjects? The audience gasp could not have been louder if he had uttered an awful swear word. The panel were dumbstruck.

So Gove's job at education is not done. The structure of the changes may be clear. But seemingly the public remains to be convinced that change is necessary. And you can't do that without attacking the recent record of the teaching profession.

Gove has been reluctant to do this, and no one has been licensed to take on this task of persuasion. The case is clear. But without anyone putting that case clearly and repeatedly, why would the country embrace change (apart from those who have seen it in their own neighbourhoods)?

This critical task remains to be tackled. Until it is tackled, and tackled successfully, Gove's work is not done and his reforms will be at risk under a government beholden to the NUT.


A K Haart said...

Typos in title - stil and last line - will be at rick.

If Miliband gets in, Gove is probably wasting his time.

John Page said...

Thanks :)

James Higham said...

If they're not careful, he'll defect to UKIP.