A question of truth or dare

27th February 2004 at 00:00
Teachers, it seems, had even more in common with their favourite former education secretary than they thought. As they buckled under the pressure of successive government initiatives, Estelle Morris says she was fighting similar battles with interfering "Andrew Adonises" in Number 10.

The ex-teacher has accused Downing Street advisers of not delivering a "damn thing", bombarding her with ideas while she was trying to implement previous proposals, and sometimes being "just plain wrong". Teachers might say the same about education ministers.

Ms Morris's comments will reinforce her reputation for honesty. They may not endear her to former colleague Michael Barber, head of Tony Blair's delivery unit, or to a prime minister who gave her another government post after she resigned as education secretary. But her revelations may be less impolitic than they seem, given Mr Blair's anxiety to reassure party members that he is listening to them - not just his advisers.

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