Williamson to personally take on skills remit

The education secretary will be supported by the new children's minister in delivering the brief, DfE confirms

New education secretary Gavin Williamson to take on further education and skills brief

Education secretary Gavin Williamson will personally lead on the skills brief, the Department for Education has confirmed. 

He will do so with support from newly appointed children's minister Kemi Badenoch – a former apprentice who completed her A levels part-time at an FE college. 

The announcement follows days of speculation on whether there would be a dedicated skills minister in Boris Johnson's government and the resignation of former apprenticeships and skills minister Anne Milton last week. 


Background: FE funding a 'priority', says Boris Johnson

More news: Kemi Badenoch appointed children's minister

Quick read: Six facts about new children’s minister Kemi Badenoch


The DfE said this morning that, as already announced, Jo Johnson would be returning to the department, and this would be "in his previous role as universities minister, in addition to also returning as a minister at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy".

A DfE spokesperson said: "All ministerial appointments have now been made and the education secretary will be leading on the skills brief, with support from the new children's minister Kemi Badenoch.

"As the prime minister has said, further education and skills will be a priority for this government – and the education secretary taking the lead for this vital work is a reflection of that commitment."

In his first appearance in Parliament as prime minister last week, Boris Johnson said he had already discussed the issue of further education and skills with the newly appointed education secretary, and it would be a priority.

"Yes, it is a great thing that 50 per cent of our kids should have the ambition to go to university, but of course it is equally important that other kids should acquire the skills they need that can be just as valuable, can lead to just as fantastic a career, and it is vital we invest now in further education and skills," he said. 

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