They said ..

23rd May 2008 at 01:00
'I have accepted in full the recommendations.' - Ed Balls addressing Parliament on teachers' pay and conditions
'I have accepted in full the recommendations.' - Ed Balls addressing Parliament on teachers' pay and conditions

WE SAY ...

We're going to be generous. Rather than accusing the Children, Schools and Families Secretary of lying to the House, we're going to assume that he's just been a bit forgetful.

Mr Balls was anxious to reassure MPs and the public that he respected the recommendations of the independent, statutory School Teachers' Review Body (STRB).

Well he might, given the threat of pay strikes by the National Union of Teachers. Let's not forget either, that Bill Cockburn, who chaired the review body, is about to take responsibility for MPs' pay - so he is a good man to keep on side.

But did Mr Balls really accept the STRB's recommendations "in full"?

Well, no. He entirely rejected its proposal of an overhaul of unqualified teachers' pay; its suggestion that they be renamed "associate teachers"; its advice that teachers' professional responsibilities be kept separate from their conditions of employment; and its recommended review of teachers' regulatory framework.

Maybe he's been a bit distracted.

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