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Mick Brookes: The new leader of the National Association of Headteachers embodies a more belligerent mood among primary heads.

Jacqui Smith: Back for her second stint at the Department for Education and Skills, Ruth Kelly's deputy is a widely respected former teacher.

Conor Ryan: David Blunkett's former spin doctor is now lurking in Downing Street shadows after being appointed as Tony Blair's education adviser.

Al Aynsley-Green: He became England's Children's Commissioner, with a remit to police children protection issues.

David Willetts: He returns to the Opposition education team, this time as shadow minister, despite supporting David Davies in the Conservative leader contest.

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