Eric Forth, Minister of State for Education and Employment and Gillian Shephard's number two, has been promoted to the Privy Council in the New Year's Honours list.
Mr Forth has won a reputation as a pragmatist and effective performer, currently responsible for piloting the Government's controversial Bill on selection and discipline through Parliament.
Recognition for political services also goes to Dominic Morris, a relatively unknown former civil servant who as deputy head of John Major's policy unit advised the prime minister on educational issues, most notably during the crucial drafting of the legislation which led to the introduction of nursery vouchers. He receives a CBE.
Other honours go to Herman Ouseley, chairman of the Commission for Racial Equality and former chief executive of the Inner London Education Authority, and Peter Davis, chairman of the National Advisory Council for Education and Training Targets. Both receive knighthoods.
Cecil Knight, head of Small Heath School, Birmingham, and a leading supporter of grant-maintained schools, is one of only a handful of headteachers to be given honours. He receives a CBE. He was awarded an OBE in 1987.
Others to receive honours include poet and children's author, Roger McGough (OBE), children's writer Philippa Pearce (OBE) and long-time supporter of youth clubs, the entertainer Frankie Vaughan (CBE).
Eric Forth, MP for Mid Worcestershire and Minister of State, Department for Education and Employment.
The Hon Sir Angus James Bruce Ogilvy, KCVO, trustee of The Prince's Trust and chairman of The Prince's Youth Business Trust Advisory Council.
Peter John Davis, chairman, National Advisory Council for Education and Training Targets, for services to training and to industry.
Herman George Ouseley, chairman, Commission for Racial Equality, for services to community relations and local government.
Sir George Trevor Holdsworth, trustee, the Duke of Edinburgh's Award.
John Edwin Adshead, for services to the National Training Awards.
The Hon Betty St Clair Clay, for services to guiding.
Mrs Judith Donovan, chair, Bradford and District Training and Enterprise Council, for services to training.
Thomas Hugh Francis Farrell, pro-chancellor and chairman of council, University of Hull.
Cecil Gordon Knight, OBE, headteacher, Small Heath School, Birmingham.
Martyn John Dudley Lewis, chair, Drive for Youth and Youthnet UK, for services to young people and to the hospice movement.
David Frederick Miller, chairman, Scottish Qualification Authority.
Dominic Charles Bernard Morris, former deputy head, Downing Street Policy Unit.
Roger Singleton, senior director, Barnardos, for services to young people.
Frank Vaughan, OBE, for services to the NABC-Clubs for Young People.
Oswald Stephen Wheatley, chairman, the Sports Council for Wales.
Professor John Gwynn Williams, for services to the National Library of Wales.
Gregory Paul Winter, for services to science. David Alan Wood, former head of Information Technology and project manager, Labour Market System Project, Department for Education and Employment.
Mrs Anne Wright, vice-chancellor and chief executive, University of Sunderland.
Mrs Mavis Ainsworth, former director, School of Cultural Studies, Sheffield Hallam University.
John D Ault, chair, Corporation of Yeovil College, for services to education.
Miss Enid Castle, former principal, Cheltenham Ladies' College.
Sister Mary Vincent Duggan, for services to education.
Miss Helen Simpson Dunsmore, for services to higher education.
William Harold Faulkner, headteacher, Montrose Academy.
William James Ferguson, former vice chairman, Scottish Agricultural College, for services to agriculture and education.
Frederick Howard Green, education adviser, National Association of Independent and non-Maintained Schools.
Colin Ayton Greenhalgh, principal, Hills Road Sixth Form College, Cambridge.
Mrs Margaret Edith Hobrough, principal and chief executive, Godalming Sixth Form College, Surrey.
John Trevor Hopkins, headmaster, Bishop Stopford School, Kettering, Northamptonshire.
Miss Alice Elizabeth Audrey Lamb, for services to education.
Michael John Leech, principal, Stevenson College, Edinburgh.
Andrew Duncan McCracken, former principal officer, HowdenhallSt Katharineis Centre, Edinburgh, for services to child care.
David Alexander McCubbin, for services to people with learning disabilities.
Roger McGough, poet, for services to poetry.
Stuart McKenzie, for services to the Sea Cadet Corps southern area.
Charles Edward Moody, deputy chief executive, Engineering and Marine Training Authority, for services to training.
Miss Ann Philippa Pearce, (Mrs Christie) author, for services to children's literature.
Howard Wesley Petch, principal, Bishop Burton College.
George Redmond Pollard, headteacher, St Thomas More Catholic High School, Crewe, Cheshire.
Professor Vincent Bruce Proudfoot, former general secretary, Royal Society of Edinburgh, for services to learning.
John Matthew Richardson, director, Lancashire Area West Training and Enterprise Council.
Charles Keith Atkinson, for services to young people in Nottinghamshire and to rowing.
Mrs Elsie Evelyn Baker, for services to the Girls! Brigade on Guernsey.
Mrs Marian Beckett, assistant caretaker, Priestley College, Warrington, Cheshire.
Mrs Susan Marilyn Burns, for services to the Rela Goldhill Lodge London and to young disabled people.
Miss Joan Clarke, general assistant, dining hall, Worcester College of Higher Education.
Mrs Olwen Jessie Couldridge, secretary, Park Primary School, Newham, London.
Mrs Eileen Frances Coutts, for services to the Sea Cadet Corps in East London.
Derrick Stanley Cox, head chef, Pembroke College, University of Oxford.
Peter Daniel, chairman, Ridgemond Training, Stevenage, Hertfordshire, for services to training and young people.
Mrs Hilda Donaldson, for services to education.
James Murray Elliot, former chairman, Scout Association, East Sussex, for services to Scouting.
Miss Valerie Ann Fea, former executive secretary, the School Library Association, for services to librarianship and to young people.
Mrs Dorothy Christine Flynn, for services to young people in Winchester Hampshire.
Miss Patricia Folland, for services to young people in South Shields Tyne and Wear.
Mrs Pauline Anne Force, school secretary, Oakfield County Primary Junior School, Dartford, Kent.
Arthur Samuel George, school crossing patrol, Portsmouth, Hampshire.
Alan Joseph Gruar, training manager, Lucas Aerospace, Wolverhampton Training Centre, Lucas Varity plc.
Mrs Edna Hilda Knight Hallatt, governor, Newcastle-under-Lyme School, Staffordshire.
Mrs Mabel Evelyn Jeanette Henderson, for services to the Guide Association in Shetland.
Mrs Dorothy Hunt, for services to the Sea Cadet Corps in Nottingham.
Mrs Sarah Ruth Hunt, for services to disabled children in Northampton.
Miss Margaret Isobel Hutcheon, headteacher, Mosstowie Primary School, Morayshire.
Andy Derrick Johnson, section leader, mathematics and technology department, Southwark College London.
Mrs Janice Jones, for services to the community in Adamsdown, Cardiff.
Mrs R. Mary Lawrence, caretaker, Irfon Valley County Primary School, Powys.
Mrs Ann Lawthom, lately headteacher, Rhondda Special School, Trealaw, Rhondda.
Mrs Joan Lewin, for services to the Historical Association.
Mrs Ann Lewis, teacher in charge, Widden Family Centre, Gloucester, for services to pre-school education.
Maurice George Lihou, for services to Young Handicapped People on Guernsey.
Miss Monica Lynskey, lately administrative officer, Office for Standards in Education.
Miss Williamina MacGregor, school cook, Lochardil Primary School, Inverness.
Mrs Maureen S. Macmillan, chairman, City of Edinburgh Children's Panel Advisory Committee, for services to Young People.
Stuart Macredie, lately headteacher, St Albans Junior and Infant School, Wickersley, Rotherham.
William James McAlpine, for services to scouting.
Mrs Rachel McClean, for services to training.
Mrs Kathrine Amanda Morris, Clerk to the Corporation, East Birmingham College.
John O'Neil, lately principal lecturer and course leader of PGCE Art and Design, University of Wales Institute, Cardiff.
Mrs Isobel Marilyn Park, for services to the Scout Association in Dumfries.
Mrs Peggy Pugh, for services to young people on the Isle of Man.
Cyril Redpath, for services to the Army Cadet Force in Northumbria.
James Edwin Rous Saltonstall, for services to yachting and to young people.
Mrs Susan Scarsbrook, head, Sudbourne Primary School, Lambeth, London.
Miss Annie Mary Simpson, for services to education.
Mrs Jean Skinner, school crossing patrol Warden, Kent County Council.
Miss Gwenneth Maude Muriel Smewin, former headteacher, Dunmore County Infants School, Abingdon, Oxfordshire.
Mrs Jean Stevenson, typistclerical assistant, Grange Academy, Kilmarnock.
Mrs Marina Ann Thomas, school crossing patrol, Newton Abbot, Devon County Council.
Douglas Albert Till, for services to training in Worcester.
Mrs Valerie Ann Wallis, vice-chairman, Young Men's Christian Association, for services to young people in Kent.
John Wardrobe, for services to Association Football for young people.
Mrs Margaret Jane Wooden, school crossing patrol, Lancashire County Council.
John William Young, brigade treasurer, lately chairman, England and Wales committee, Boys' Brigade.