Vanity purchase

21st February 2003 at 00:00
It was never going to knock JK Rowling off the bestsellers list but the revelation that the Department for Education and Skills had flogged 1,166 copies of its indescribably tedious annual report raised eyebrows. Did 1,166 people really fork out pound;31.95 for such political platitudes?

All became clear when Education Secretary Charles Clarke admitted in a parliamentary question that his department had been responsible for 750 of the purchases. Although HM Stationery Office, the report's publishers, kindly gave the DfES a discount when the cost of typesetting and design (pound;42,346) is added to the purchase costs it takes total DfES spending on its own report to almost pound;60,000, or pound;80 per copy.

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers

Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today