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Truss's Education Team: What Parents Need to Know

As a parent, it's important to be aware of the current education landscape and what changes may be in store. In this blog post, we'll discuss the recent appointments made by the new Prime Minister, Liz Truss, and how they may impact parents and their children. Stay tuned for updates!

Kit Malthouse

Kit Malthouse has been appointed the new Education Secretary by Prime Minister Truss. He is a Conservative MP for North West Hampshire and has been since May 2010. He has held the following positions: Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister of State for Crime and Policing. He also served as Deputy Mayor of London under Boris Johnson.

He has pledged to reinvigorate Gove's schools policy and says the government must intervene 'firmly' to 'push' underperforming schools into academy trusts.

He has also been tasked with drawing up plans for opening new grammar schools in England. Malthouse, a supporter of grammar schools, maintains that Truss's government are about parental choice, "Everybody needs to be able to make a choice for their kids. And so looking at that policy seriously and looking at areas that want to have it, or indeed, grammar schools that want to expand is something that she’s definitely asked us to do.”

However, lifting or reversing the ban on grammar skills could be an uphill battle. Research about the benefits of grammar schools is not favourable. Furthermore, if legislation was passed in the House of Commons, it would probably face strong opposition in the House of Lords.

Kelly Tolhurst

Kelly Tolhurst has been appointed Minister for Schools and Childhood. She will oversee some of the responsibilities held by former schools and children’s ministers, including “strategy for schools, including standards and selection”. Selection was not mentioned in the briefs of her recent predecessors.

Jonathan Gullis

Jonathan Gullis has been appointed the Schools Minister. Gullis is a keen supporter of grammar schools and wants the ban lifted. His appointment is the most junior rank for departmental ministers and is understood to be the first minister of that rank to hold the schools brief since the late 1980s. He has also voiced his support for undergraduate teaching apprenticeships in an attempt to address the teacher recruitment issues.

Andrea Jenkyns

Andrea Jenkyns has been re-appointed as a minister in the Department for Education and will retain her skills, further and higher education brief. The minister previously attracted some controversy at the time of her first appointment after footage emerged that showed her raising a middle finger to protestors in Downing Street.

At a fringe event at the 2022 Conservative Party Conference, she raised concerns about British universities and further education establishments, accusing them of providing students with "a diet of critical thinking, anti-British history and social Marxism".

Should Grammar Schools Be The Main Priority?

The announcement that the government will be creating a new wave of grammar schools across England will be met with mixed reactions, with some people claiming that it is a "vote winner" while others are worried about the implications this could have on other schools.

Furthermore, education advocates argue that ministers' main priorities should be to ensure that all students have access to a good education. This means making sure that schools have enough funding, addressing about teacher recruitment and pay, and providing adequate teacher training. Thus, by doing this, all students will be able to get the best education possible.

Do you think that Liz Truss has got it right? Let us know in the comments!

Blog post updated - 04/10/22

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