Schools White Paper

Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Prime Minister – in the House of Commons at 12:31 pm on 24th November 2010.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Michael Gove Michael Gove The Secretary of State for Education 12:31 pm, 24th November 2010

I am very grateful to the right hon. Gentleman not just for his question, but for his achievements as Secretary of State for Education. I have said it before, and I will repeat that he was an outstanding Education Secretary. One reason why he was so good was that he recognised that there is a time for central Government to play a role, and a time for them to let go. When he was Education Secretary, it was vital to tighten things up, particularly at the bottom, but, over time, he recognised that as the education system improved, we needed to let go more and more. We are saying that there should be a relentless focus on underperformance. We need tough standards for schools that are failing, but for those that can help there is, as Joel Klein said, a chance to liberate greatness rather than mandate it.