WATCH: DfE policy adviser stars in Love Island

Department for Education post-16 policy adviser Zara McDermott has joined Love Island. FErret is thrilled


Zara McDermott Department for Education to Love Island

It’s a busy time at the Department for Education at the moment. Beleaguered civil servants have been tasked with pushing through the successful introduction of T levels by 2020, after education secretary Damian Hinds overruled concerns raised by his own permanent secretary, Jonathan Slater. Then there's the ongoing review of post-18 education, which still seems to be bogged down in establishing what it will actually be reviewing.

And now it has emerged that staff at the Department are so desperate for a break, one of them has upped sticks and headed for Love Island

Zara McDermott has worked at the DfE since October 2017, according to her LinkedIn profile. But, for the foreseeable future at least, Ms McDermott has swapped Sanctuary Buildings for the TV show’s villa in Majorca.

On the chase

According to publicity interviews before her arrival in the villa, Ms McDermott has her eyes on romance – although she admits to being attracted to men who are "emotionally unavailable" and like to "give her a chase". This should stand her in good stead for the flagging push to find 3 million apprenticeships when she gets back, then.

And it's not just FErret who's excited about FE making it on to prime time TV.


Inexplicably, Ms McDermott doesn't seem to have used her exposure on the telly (no, not like that) to make a case for ending GCSE resits or championing institutes of technology. Maybe that's in tonight's show.


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Wash plumber out of your lair With all the furore about the cost of plumbers, people have been cashing in on the skills shortage in this area and signing up for career-changing courses. Now Filton college has launched a course, aimed at women, showing them how to do the plumbing at home without resorting to the Yellow Pages or their cheque books. So the game could soon be up for those hard-to-find professional plumbers, who are already feeling the pinch as a result of the expansion of professional plumbing courses. Filton college suggests that ignorance of plumbing is a female preserve - or perhaps that women will admit their limitations. Here's what FErret, using his in-built male expertise, would do if he came home from holiday to find the house turning into a scene from the Poseidon Adventure. 1) Turn off the stop-cock (after the future Mrs FErret has reminded him where it is). 2) Call a plumber!

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