Thursday, March 16, 2006

MP Refused to Back Bad Idea

Well last night Michael Connarty, the MP for Linlithgow and East Falkirk and therefore my MP as well as my opponent from last May, maintained that the education reform that Ruth Kelly was proposing was a bad idea.

He voted against the bill and the government programme to implement it.

His first intervention in the debate was to ask David Willetts the Conservative, Shadow Education Secretary when he asked pointedly:

"Is it not significant that the areas with the deepest pits of failure are the areas that the Tories control, where grammar schools are prevalent?"

Then he asked John Denham, one of his Labour colleagues, to clarify this point for him:

"May I take my right hon. Friend back to his first comment about the worry that the White Paper would be a charter for the middle classes to take over independent trust schools? Nothing that he has said up to now has convinced me that that will not happen, and the local authorities will not have the power to prevent it."

Mr Denham agreed that the bill was perfect regarding safeguards he would have liked to have seen in the bill.

He tried a third time possibly to get his question answered but David Chaytor, who is a member of the education and skills committee, did not give way to him. Thus he joined the Liberal Democrats in the No Lobby twice.

Hardly surprising when you see one of the Times articles on the subject today showing the complete circular path that Labour have taken education reform since they came to power in 1997.

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