Nicky Morgan has warned that Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party risks taking the education debate back to the “1970s and 1980s”.
The education secretary told TES that the choice of new Labour leader would mean a clear division between the two parties when it came to education policy that could turn back the clock by at least 30 years.
The biggest difference, Ms Morgan said, would be how the new-look Labour Party approached academies, which were introduced by the Labour government under Tony Blair.
“There are things in education that we have accepted that we want, such as heads and teachers and governors running the schools,” the Cabinet member said.
“The academies programme was started by Lord Adonis and I talked earlier about education being a great life transformer. What I don’t want is to go back to is the debates of the 1970s and 1980s.
“We now have a very strong education system in this country and I hope the Labour Party will join me in rooting out the remaining problems and education failures where they are in the country."
Mr Corbyn swept to power over the weekend after being elected to lead the Labour Party with the support of nearly 60 per cent of Labour members.
And Ms Morgan reiterated the Conservatives’ attack that Mr Corbyn’s brand of politics was a “threat to our country’s security”.
“We’re not going to have any of this, ‘Oh, there’s no differences between the main parties’. There are key differences and we’ll see how that develops in education,” she said.
“Jeremy Corbyn has a big mandate and we’ll have to see what happens next in the Labour Party. The broader point is that his kind of politics are a threat to our country’s security. I do believe that. ”