EDUCATION Secretary Michael Gove came under heavy criticism yesterday as a senior Cabinet minister blasted his £400 million cuts to schools.
The unnamed government source branded Mr Gove an “ideologically obsessed zealot” after it was announced that the budget for new schools was to be slashed to invest in free schools instead.
Such extensive cuts would have been able to fund 30,000 much-needed new school places.
It is “nothing short of lunacy,” the source said.
Shadow education minister Tristam Hunt also weighed in, saying: “Gove’s decision to transfer this funding away from areas in need of new primary places into the free school programme is an act of ideological vandalism.”
The source went on to say that Mr Gove was “so dogmatic about free schools, he essentially places no spending restrictions on them at all.
“The free schools budget is out of control and the Secretary of State would rather sink another £800 million into the black hole, rather than rein in spending.”
The spat comes merely a week after headteachers’ union NAHT general secretary Russell Hobby highlighted how the Discovery New School – one of the government’s first free schools – “taught nothing.”
Discovery New School closed less than three years after inauguration.
The school’s teaching was labelled by the school’s watchdog Ofsted as “inadequate,” with many pupils leaving education without being able to suitably read or write.
Prime Minister David Cameron insisted that free schools were still “excellent innovation.”
Via Morning Star