09/06/2014 Daily Politics


09/06/2014

Jo Coburn with the latest on the 'Trojan Horse' schools investigation and the perils of being a minister's special adviser.


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Transcript


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Good afternoon and welcome to the Daily Politics.

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Five schools put in special measures for failing to do enough to protect

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How were these problems in Birmingham missed?

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After last week's public spat, the Prime Minister chairs

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a Cabinet extremism task force in Downing Street to discuss

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Hundreds of new councillors were elected last month.

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Has this volunteer workforce got any idea what they're doing?

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And his or her master's voice - the perils of being a special advisor.

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Let's start this morning with allegations

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of Islamic extremism infiltrating several Birmingham schools.

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Later on today, Ofsted will publish their reports on the

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emergency inspection of 21 schools embroiled in

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the so-called Trojan Horse plot to promote a strict

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It's expected that six schools will be put into special measures,

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a move which could result in their governing bodies being

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It comes after some Birmingham schools put

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on hastily arranged lessons and assemblies on Christianity to

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give a false impression to inspectors of religious harmony.

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In future schools will may not get the usual 24 hours notice as

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David Cameron pushes for lightning inspections after schools were found

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to have axed part of the curriculum, segregated boys and girls and had

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unsuitable religious speakers at assemblies.

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David Cameron has now personally taken charge of the situation after

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the very public fallout between Education Secretary Michael Gove

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Mr Gove's allies accused Ms May of failing to

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"drain the swamp" of extremism, while the Home Office responded

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by saying they'd warned Michael Gove about the schools in 2010.

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This morning the Park View Educational Trust

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confirmed that three of its schools were now in special measures.

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Vice-chair David Hughes told the gathered media that

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the Ofsted condemnation of his schools was unfair.

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The problem is the knee jerk reactions of some politicians

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undermining the great work we do in community cohesion across the

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cities. They have put most children at substantial risk of not being

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accepted as equal, legitimate and valued members of British society.

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They have allowed suspicion to be cast on the aspiration of their

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parents and any other one -- anyone else who believes that these

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children deserve the same level of education than any other child. Was

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our national security under threat from these schools? It would appear

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not. There is a big difference between radicalisation leading to

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worries about security, which is the Home Secretary's early work, and the

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issues around whether teaching is acceptable, is it part of a broader

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liberal curriculum, is there something going wrong in the school

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and its values? Obviously, that is what we are dealing with here and we

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are dealing with it in a muddled way. The education funding agency

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did not have a really in this area because their job is funding. The

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inspection regime is about quality of education, including the

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curriculum, but we also have trusts where they don't have to follow the

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national curriculum because Michael Gove has got a two track policy.

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Only schools granted as community schools have to legally follow the

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national curriculum. We are looking at a number of schools that were

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academies that you championed as Education Secretary. The whole point

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of these schools is freedom to be distinct, freedom to set their own

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emphasis on the national curriculum, to employee teachers

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that were not necessarily qualified. Those freedoms have come back to

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bite you and this administration. I am happy to accept any

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responsibility for what I did but mine were freedoms to, not freedoms

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from. All schools had to adhere to a light touch national curriculum and

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I am recommending in my report that we had to return to that. There is

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innovation and creativity but there is an entitlement for all children

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to have that basic curriculum. Also, that there should be local oversight

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but there is nothing apart from the Secretary of State and the

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Department. The lack of responsibility at local level, other

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than from the school governors and the Secretary of State, isn't

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working. Do you think that that has to be revisited? You have outlined

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what you think is necessary in terms of having oversight. I come back to

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the argument, it was supposed to be free from local authority control.

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Did you accept that the problem with that has been that you can have a

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situation which has occurred in some Birmingham schools, or that is what

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is being claimed, that you can have groups of people trying to take over

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schools that do not fit with what some people would call British

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values and British culture? There are two Mike Berry separate issues.

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Whether schools should run themselves and whether we should

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have a national curriculum that underpins the kind of values we

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presume we all hold in common, whatever our faith. I think today,

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we have got to distinguish between radicalisation that is out with what

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we would find acceptable in any school and a legitimate right for

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those of different faiths to have their values and their voice heard.

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There is a difference. I am involved in the publication of a book about a

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different view of the Prophet Muhammad, about the view of Islam,

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which can set with and be part of an interfaith community in a perfectly

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acceptable way. We have got to establish that. Otherwise, we are

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going to have a two tier system where you can have very strong

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Christian views but not strong Muslim views and the two must be

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allowed to sit alongside each other. We are just going to pause and go to

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Birmingham. Some of the representatives, particularly from

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Park View Academy, have been robust in their defence and have rejected

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the findings into their schools. They said inspectors were looking

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for extremism, but it was a knee jerk reaction from politicians. What

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is the feeling you are? I am in a part of Birmingham which is almost

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entirely Muslim in terms of its population. Most of the schools have

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a Muslim population of 95 to 100%. The people that run the schools say

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that naturally, they reflect that local community and there will be an

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Islamic ethos in there. Other people criticised that imposition of

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religious ethos in what is supposedly non-faith schools. What

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you heard this morning was a strong defence of this scope from the vice

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chairman of the governors and one of the senior teaching staff. # of this

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school. They have been speaking about this for three months either

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via social media or in the papers are on-air, ever since this first

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emerged. This particular school, which is seen as being at the centre

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of this alleged plot, has tonight there was a plot in the first place

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and points to its excellent exam assault and says, here we are in

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inner-city Birmingham, an area with traditionally low aspiration and

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deprivation, and look at the exam results and how good the children

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are when they leave and go on to A-levels. They are facing having

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governors sacked, the body of leadership having to leave the

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school? That is exactly right. There are six schools which will be put

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into special measures including this one and another two who are part of

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the same academy trust. That means an interim executive board can be

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brought into the school to take over the running of it. Incidentally, in

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another part of the city today, there is an Islamic faith school,

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state funded, where and IEP is trying to get in for the fourth time

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since it was put into special measures and on each occasion the

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school has refused to them in, parents have gathered outside to

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form a human chain to stop that happening. I would not be surprised,

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frankly, given the strength of feeling in this community, if you

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would not see similar pictures outside schools like this when those

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inspectors turn up to try and take over. Let's pick up on one of those

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points. If you are looking at the schools, what Ofsted was there to do

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was check how well the school was doing and look at exam results. What

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the leadership team are saying Park View Academy is that they are doing

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extremely well, it is beacon of hope. They said, why are we being

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condemned? Are they ignoring the acquisitions of segregation, error

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for Brits because at assemblies, a hastily arranged assembly about

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Christianity? There has been a lot going on which is unacceptable. Exam

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results are important but only one part of the measure of what is

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taking place in a school. The recommendations put forward six

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weeks ago were that you should have an entitlement to a broad small

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liberal curriculum everywhere, but there should be a director of school

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standard who could oversee this at local level, that you

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standard who could oversee this at local level, that should end up

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training governors and have a means of monitoring governors in schools

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and that you should have a scrutiny function from the local authority

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that does not interfere with the leadership of the school or the

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running of it, but checks what is happening. If that is happening, we

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would be able to deal with these measures which is not going to -- in

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a manner which is not going to cause friction such as that demonstrated

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in Birmingham and the real fear of a stand-off between the Muslim

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community and what they see is authority at with their own

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experience. We have a task to pull people together. I hope that in the

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statement in the, This afternoon there be a recognition about trying

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to heal the wounds as well as protecting children. What do you

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think of lightning expections? -- inspections? It is a way of

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diverting attention from the fundamental issues about what values

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do we want to instil in our schools, can we agree those across

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faiths or no faith, can we ensure there is accountability and

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oversight and can we sort out the model as to whether all schools just

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run themselves and are completely independent, or whether we do want

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the coalescing and avoid the atomisation that the chief inspector

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talked about a few weeks ago? Thank you.

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In last month's local elections 4,259 local councillors were

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voted in, but do they know what they've got themselves into?

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Eleanor's been to meet someone who's done the job for 12 years

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and a man who's stepping into politics for the very first time.

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From the outside of the town hall, I can't believe how many hours I spent

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in meetings in the building. But I am really proud to have been part of

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a team of people that turned Hackney Council round from a municipal

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basket case into if reforming council. This councillor had decided

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to stand down before last month's local elections. Why have you given

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up? Nothing to do with politics. Surely personal reasons, because you

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wanted to move house and I have young children, and I wanted to

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spend more time with them. What are the things you are not going to

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miss? It is quite liberating not to have things in your diary for four

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years in advance and also, not to have to ask with Chief Whip of your

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political group for permission to go on holiday. If you could give one

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piece of advice to a newly elected councillor, what would it be? You

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are a councillor for at least four years so it is a marathon rather

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than a sprint. Lucas Pouille now, done it and got the T-shirt. But

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down the road in Essex, I will meet a newly elected councillor. I wonder

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if they know what they have let themselves in for? Graham Snell is

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dipping his feet into politics for the first time, having just been

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elected as Age UK councillor in Iraq. -- in their work. What do you

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want to achieve? I want to try and make a difference to people's lives,

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for the people in my make a difference to people's lives,

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for the people ward. Hopefully it will pan out OK. Seeing as you are a

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newly elected councillor, The Daily Politics loves a quiz, so we are

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going to test you on your local knowledge - what town is Thurrock 20

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with? No idea. It is in Germany. You have lost me. Apparently it is

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twinned with how many people live in the borough of Thurrock? That is

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approximately 160,000. What is the motto of Thurrock? It is something

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like - from the Thames to the rest of the world. I think you have

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passed that test, well done. Graham has now become one of more than

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eight team thousand councillors across England. The Local Government

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Association says 96% are white and around two thirds are men. This is

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the facility 's room, it is a bit of a cupboard under the stairs. This

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used to be our office before we got some more people elected. I have

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been lost so many times around here now... Like finding his office,

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Graham's entrance into politics has taken a bit of time. I have not even

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got my name on the door yet. And we are joined now by the chairman of

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the Local Government Association, Sir Merrick Cockell. Welcome to the

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programme. 4,259 new councillors - who helps them find their feet? MPs

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always say when they first come to the House of Commons, they are lost.

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Councils are pretty good, they plan ahead, and they all have induction.

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I think we try not to inundate people the moment they become a

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councillor. It goes on for several weeks and months, and they begin to

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learn about how democracy works at a local level. What about when a

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council changes hands overnight? You imagine this sudden shift of

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ideology, which could affect services? Yes, I think when

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political control happens, particularly when it is a shock,

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then a lot of people are literally running around in the next few days.

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But we have got those officers, like civil servants, and they prepare

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ahead, like they do in government, they look to who might win and they

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prepare. Although they might be relatively headless chickens for the

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first day or two, actually, it settles down after that. But is

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there a wholesale rejection of what has gone on before? Well, they watch

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what is said in manifestos, but one has to say, there is not much money

:18:08.:18:13.

around these days, so you may have grand ideas, but you have got to pay

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for them, and if you want to change the way things are operating, have

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got to have your other alternative. So, the flexibility of rapid

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wholesale change I think is reduced. Looking at representation,

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18,000 councillors, 96% white, two thirds, men, which is quite

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staggering, what do you say to that? It is not good. It is something we

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and all parts of local government and all of the political parties

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recognise, you may reflect your individual area, but when you look

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at the overall percentages, it is stark. And you have not even

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included young people in that, the average age of a councillor. It is a

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slow process, but we are trying to do it, to attract different types of

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people. It takes up time to put your forward to be a councillor. It in

:19:17.:19:20.

binges on your career, on your work. So people are more inclined to

:19:21.:19:24.

be older, to be retired, and those who have more choice regarding their

:19:25.:19:29.

time, which might push against people in the prime of their lives.

:19:30.:19:35.

One big change is the growing number of UKIP councillors, with the party

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gaining 155 seats, but a lot of people see UKIP as a party

:19:42.:19:44.

determined to pull Britain out of Europe, so how will they get on in

:19:45.:19:49.

local government? They have already been there, in local government.

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They are part of our independent group within the Local Government

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Association. They will have to learn what it is to be councillors have.

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Cannot spend all your time talking about Europe, you have got to talk

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about local public services. You have got to lead your community,

:20:08.:20:13.

which includes education. These are big matters which councillors have

:20:14.:20:17.

to be accountable for. To the public schools have a stranglehold on the

:20:18.:20:23.

opera levels of British public life, and if so, how do you tackle the

:20:24.:20:28.

problem? One Conservative MP wants at least a quarter of places to be

:20:29.:20:33.

reserved for non-feepaying pupils. It would not be the first attempt to

:20:34.:20:37.

break the class divide in our schools. This was a football match

:20:38.:20:41.

between Eton and eight Durham miners' team in 1937.

:20:42.:20:50.

NEWSREEL: The unemployed lads play regularly to keep themselves fit.

:20:51.:20:57.

The home side get the upper hand and score the first goal. After tea, the

:20:58.:21:08.

miners keep up the pressure, with the Italians trying to keep down the

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ball. A great bit of footage. We are

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joined now by the Conservative MP Dominic Raab, who has written a

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report on how to make Britain more of a meritocracy. We are also joined

:21:26.:21:28.

by the guardian columnist Owen Jones. I am afraid I left about

:21:29.:21:37.

three months ago. Behind the times! Up until quite recently! The new

:21:38.:21:42.

Britain is a meritocracy, said Tony Blair, in 1997 - what did he mean?

:21:43.:21:50.

The term was actually invented as a dystopia, it was Michael Young who

:21:51.:21:55.

invented it, to mean, basically, you accept inequality, but those who are

:21:56.:22:00.

at the top, you accept to be there, because of merit. A hospital

:22:01.:22:03.

cleaner, for example, paid the minimum wage, keeps our hospitals

:22:04.:22:09.

from being ravaged by disease, compared to an advertising

:22:10.:22:13.

executive, trying to sell us fast food, is paid vast amounts of money.

:22:14.:22:17.

For me, it is about equality. The manic will not like this, but I do

:22:18.:22:24.

think there is an audacity, shamelessness, in your position.

:22:25.:22:29.

This is the day that the Child Poverty And Social Mobility

:22:30.:22:33.

Commission has reported that by 2030, 3500 children will be in

:22:34.:22:40.

poverty. The day that food banks have reported 300,000 children which

:22:41.:22:45.

they are feeding at the moment, on the sixth richest country on the

:22:46.:22:50.

Earth, because of policies you have voted for, and then you come to a TV

:22:51.:22:57.

studio to vote for social mobility and meritocracy. It is like a robber

:22:58.:23:00.

baron coming into a TV studio to talk about petty theft. This is the

:23:01.:23:06.

usual left-wing dogma we get these days. 3000 children having to rely

:23:07.:23:14.

on charity? There is a big issue with social mobility in this

:23:15.:23:18.

country, we know that, if you come there today with the post-war

:23:19.:23:22.

generation, the chances are significantly less, despite 13 years

:23:23.:23:28.

of Labour. The evidence shows it remains stalled. Ed Miliband will

:23:29.:23:34.

try to take us down the thesis that we should have this big Ella

:23:35.:23:37.

Terri-Ann utopia, but actually, the Tories in the centre-right have won

:23:38.:23:43.

the economic argument. They clearly haven't. You have presided over the

:23:44.:23:46.

longest fall in living standards since the Victorian era. You call

:23:47.:23:55.

that winning the argument! If you look at what the British public say

:23:56.:23:59.

about what we are doing and the contrast in choice between Miliband

:24:00.:24:03.

and David Cameron. You are behind in the polls! But I do accept there is

:24:04.:24:09.

an issue around social fairness. Stewardship is the strength of the

:24:10.:24:14.

Tories, but I do think we need a narrative around social fairness,

:24:15.:24:17.

which should be rooted in meritocratic, not a Geller Terri-Ann

:24:18.:24:22.

principles. By the way, I think all of Owen's statistics can be

:24:23.:24:27.

disputed. -- not eat Geller Terri-Ann principles. Let's have a

:24:28.:24:41.

look at schools. If you were given the task to create more social

:24:42.:24:52.

mobility in education, Owen Jones, how would you do it? Firstly, it is

:24:53.:24:58.

not just education, there are things like unpaid internships, which means

:24:59.:25:02.

that only those who live off the bank of mum and dad can get a job. I

:25:03.:25:07.

believe that Dominic Raab himself had an unpaid internship in 2011.

:25:08.:25:13.

There is a gap in vocabulary between affluent kids and poor kids of 18

:25:14.:25:20.

months. We need huge weasels is put into early years of education. We

:25:21.:25:25.

need to deal with the fact that housing is related to diet and

:25:26.:25:30.

poverty. I went to a school, my primary school, which is in the

:25:31.:25:34.

bottom 5% by result. The only boy to go to the sixth form, let alone

:25:35.:25:38.

university, Moore went to prison. Not because I am brighter, but

:25:39.:25:46.

because the odds were stacked in my favour. Is it not true that this was

:25:47.:25:54.

suggested to the Government but they could not stomach it, putting all of

:25:55.:26:06.

that money into early years? Look, I have got 13 measures here, you have

:26:07.:26:16.

picked one of them. Early intervention is something we should

:26:17.:26:18.

look at, but it is difficult when you start asking the state to become

:26:19.:26:27.

sorry but parents. It is not that, it is just evening out the playing

:26:28.:26:32.

field. We had 13 years of huge public investment... And are you

:26:33.:26:39.

saying schools did not improve? I cannot speak for every school, but

:26:40.:26:42.

if you look at the evidence on social mobility, it remains

:26:43.:26:47.

stalled, that is what the LSE found. Secondly, if you look at the

:26:48.:26:53.

rankings during that time, numeracy and literacy among 15-year-olds

:26:54.:26:59.

plummeted. There is social mobility, but it is downwards, thanks to your

:27:00.:27:03.

government. Your government is making it a lot worse. What might be

:27:04.:27:09.

interesting is for Owen, rather than having cheap shots... Internships,

:27:10.:27:15.

do you think it is acceptable for you as an MP to have unpaid

:27:16.:27:25.

internships? What about entrenching wealth, is it not true that

:27:26.:27:30.

actually, if you are the offspring of a family which has an expensive

:27:31.:27:33.

home in London or the south-east, that you have got more chance of

:27:34.:27:40.

succeeding... ? Absolutely. And I have got 13 concrete, tangible

:27:41.:27:43.

ideas, rather than waiting for some utopian tomorrow. I am not talking

:27:44.:27:52.

about utopia. I pay my in turns expenses so that they can compute

:27:53.:27:57.

back and forth. I have no separate allowances for them. -- commute. You

:27:58.:28:02.

are giving an advantage to people who can live off the bank of mum and

:28:03.:28:11.

dad. Yes, there should be better staffing funding for internships,

:28:12.:28:17.

quite right. There is a scholarship scheme, people like Hazel blears, to

:28:18.:28:24.

her credit, have pioneered that. You are encouraging a situation where

:28:25.:28:27.

only those who live off the bank of mum and dad can get into politics.

:28:28.:28:36.

We will have two ended there. In a moment, we will talk to two of Fleet

:28:37.:28:42.

Street Fox finest, outside Parliament, waiting to cover an

:28:43.:28:47.

action packed week. This afternoon, Gordon Brown will beginning a speech

:28:48.:28:53.

to journalists. Expect the Scottish referendum to be on the menu. David

:28:54.:28:59.

Cameron flies to Stockholm for a meeting with his Swedish and Dutch

:29:00.:29:02.

and German counterparts as he battles to stop Jean-Claude Juncker

:29:03.:29:08.

from becoming president of the European Union. On Thursday, Michael

:29:09.:29:09.

Gove will announce European Union. On Thursday, Michael

:29:10.:29:15.

the next wave of free schools will be in England. And George Osborne

:29:16.:29:17.

will give his Mansion house speech on the same day. On Friday,

:29:18.:29:25.

constituencies in Liverpool and Cambridge will meet to decide

:29:26.:29:28.

whether to support Nick Clegg or back a leadership contest. And the

:29:29.:29:32.

great unknown is whether this week will see a full Cabinet reshuffle?

:29:33.:29:39.

So, what more could you want? Joining us now is Alison Little and

:29:40.:29:48.

Kevin Schofield, welcome to both of you. Let's talk about Michael Gove

:29:49.:29:54.

and Teresa May. It is deemed in Westminster that Michael Gove won in

:29:55.:29:57.

that spat - do you think Theresa May has been injured by it? House The

:29:58.:30:10.

loss of Fiona Cunningham has been a big blow to her. It all went a bit

:30:11.:30:15.

wobbly last week with unpleasant consequences for her. To Reza is

:30:16.:30:19.

seen as the bigger loser in this, though it was put to me at the

:30:20.:30:22.

weekend, somebody suggested that Theresa May could use this perhaps

:30:23.:30:29.

to her advantage to show that she is ruthless enough to let go of one of

:30:30.:30:33.

her closest advisers, perhaps sharing that streak that a leader

:30:34.:30:41.

might need. I don't know if it can be spun that way. Has Michael Gove

:30:42.:30:48.

overstepped the mark himself, and will he be seen as too hot to handle

:30:49.:30:52.

in terms of his role as Education Secretary? He has been picking a few

:30:53.:30:59.

fights of late and it has got the Prime Minister's back-up. Alison is

:31:00.:31:03.

right. On the face of it it looks like Theresa May has been the

:31:04.:31:09.

biggest loser. Michael Gove is going to have a tough challenge this

:31:10.:31:14.

afternoon. Ofsted will publish their reports into these 21 Birmingham

:31:15.:31:19.

schools and it is going to be up to him to prove that the government was

:31:20.:31:27.

not asleep. That accusation is that he knew about this as far back as

:31:28.:31:31.

2010 but did not know about it. He is not out of the woods yet. What

:31:32.:31:36.

about the reshuffle? We were always going to expected this week. Does

:31:37.:31:44.

that still stand? At the moment we are expecting an early next week for

:31:45.:31:48.

various scheduling reasons, which probably means it has started now.

:31:49.:31:56.

The money is on next week. There are calls for Michael Gove to be moved

:31:57.:32:02.

in the reshuffle. There is a view that he should have more of a

:32:03.:32:06.

Conservative Party role, perhaps the Cabinet Office or something like

:32:07.:32:10.

that. People are saying he has started talking too much at meetings

:32:11.:32:14.

and is annoying everybody. One thing any Prime Minister does not want is

:32:15.:32:20.

a big row like we have just had. If he moves, -- one of the participants

:32:21.:32:27.

in is portrayed in the context of the row. To move Michael Gove might

:32:28.:32:31.

be like a punishment or a demotion so it is a tricky one. I would be

:32:32.:32:36.

astonished if Theresa May was moved. I think she is widely seen as a

:32:37.:32:41.

success. How angry is the Prime Minister with Michael Gove? When he

:32:42.:32:44.

does this re-shuffle, he is unlikely to move Theresa May. This was always

:32:45.:32:52.

supposed to be about promoting more women. Well that's still be the

:32:53.:33:02.

point? -- will that still be? I think so. When you ask how angry the

:33:03.:33:12.

Prime Minister is, him and Theresa May had to put out a joint statement

:33:13.:33:17.

after the row with Michael Grove at eight o'clock in the morning. I

:33:18.:33:21.

think he is a bit annoyed. In terms of the reshuffle it will be lower

:33:22.:33:25.

down the Cabinet ranks and he will be looking to promote a few women.

:33:26.:33:31.

There is still an idea that he has a woman problem. On the Liberal

:33:32.:33:40.

Democrats and Nick Clegg's speech, everyone was interpreting it as a

:33:41.:33:43.

lurch to the left. Is that how you see it? Yes, but he is trying to

:33:44.:33:50.

steer this tricky course that he has got in coalition. It was called a

:33:51.:33:59.

steer to the left because he said we would tax the rich and borrow from

:34:00.:34:04.

investment, but he is also trying to make a division with Labour because

:34:05.:34:07.

he is saying the borrowing would be good or a wink rather than that of

:34:08.:34:20.

Gordon Brown. -- good borrowing. It is a strange situation in coalition.

:34:21.:34:21.

Thank you both. We're joined now for the rest

:34:22.:34:25.

of the programme by a panel of MPs. The Conservative, Chris Skidmore,

:34:26.:34:29.

Labour's Anas Sarwar and Let's get back to

:34:30.:34:31.

the story we started the programme with allegations of a Trojan Horse

:34:32.:34:36.

plot at Birmingham schools. A headteacher said he had told the

:34:37.:34:49.

Department of Education about the problems of entries in 2010, why did

:34:50.:34:52.

Michael Gove do nothing? To start with we need to set out clearly what

:34:53.:34:57.

is happening. The Ofsted reports published today are not saying there

:34:58.:35:01.

is extremism flourishing in schools, Al-Qaeda are not taking over the

:35:02.:35:07.

schools. To have this in context, we have got 21% of Ofsted reports being

:35:08.:35:11.

published. The Prime Minister issuing firm need a ship about

:35:12.:35:14.

setting out a course of action. I do not think we should blow this up to

:35:15.:35:22.

saying this is a Trojan Horse with aggressive language. It is

:35:23.:35:25.

detrimental to the fact that people want to set up schools, faith

:35:26.:35:29.

schools with great discipline, and I do not want this to blow out of

:35:30.:35:34.

proportion. Do you think it has been blown out of proportion by

:35:35.:35:39.

Conservative ministers? No, I think the media has picked it up, the

:35:40.:35:43.

language is inappropriate in a context where faith schools, the

:35:44.:35:48.

vast majority do a great job in raising children with beliefs and

:35:49.:35:51.

values that are right for this country. I do not want to see that

:35:52.:35:56.

affected. Ofsted inspectors have been sent in to look at these

:35:57.:36:00.

schools and the leadership teams from a number of these schools said

:36:01.:36:04.

they came looking for extremism, they came looking for an Islamic

:36:05.:36:09.

fundamentalist style being imposed on children. Why were they sent in

:36:10.:36:15.

looking for those things in the first place? You cannot have one

:36:16.:36:19.

argument and another saying nothing was done. There was clearly action

:36:20.:36:28.

taken, appropriate action taken, and as a result... But nothing was

:36:29.:36:32.

found, so why were they said then in the first place? The logical

:36:33.:36:36.

argument does not make sense because no action was taken. The logic if

:36:37.:36:42.

they should not have gone in in the first place. The schools are saying

:36:43.:36:46.

it was not necessary and now a number have been put into special

:36:47.:36:49.

measures where the leadership teams will be sacked and they were doing

:36:50.:36:51.

well as far as Ofsted will be sacked and they were doing

:36:52.:36:56.

concerned. That is a separate issue for Ofsted.

:36:57.:36:59.

concerned. That is a separate issue measures may disagree but we have to

:37:00.:37:06.

have and independent and accountable system where Ofsted can measure the

:37:07.:37:11.

performance. Are they being infiltrated by Islamic

:37:12.:37:17.

fundamentalists? The ministers have the facts. I have sympathy with what

:37:18.:37:22.

Chris is saying and I share his views about the integrity of faith

:37:23.:37:24.

schools and the importance of education. We have got ourselves and

:37:25.:37:30.

a political mess when we should focus on the children. Who got us

:37:31.:37:35.

into it? Samak two Cabinet ministers are playing politics instead of

:37:36.:37:39.

focusing what is important, having quality education for our kids and

:37:40.:37:46.

no extremism. Not demonising people. Have the been demonised by the

:37:47.:37:52.

reports and the political context? I do not want to downplay the

:37:53.:37:56.

seriousness of the allegations. If there is any hint of extremism being

:37:57.:38:00.

taught anywhere, whether it is school, university or anywhere else,

:38:01.:38:05.

it needs talented head-on. Two senior government ministers were too

:38:06.:38:09.

busy focusing on their own internal squabbles because their political

:38:10.:38:15.

futures are more important to them than rooting out extremism and

:38:16.:38:19.

protecting all faiths and all communities, and protecting our

:38:20.:38:24.

children. It is very un-edifying. We have allies of Michael Gove saying

:38:25.:38:28.

Theresa May failed to three in the song of extremism. Is that how you

:38:29.:38:32.

view it? I do not know who made those comments. I do not agree with

:38:33.:38:39.

that at all. What is at issue is that the Home Office and the

:38:40.:38:41.

Education Department clearly have joint responsibilities and it is

:38:42.:38:46.

about hammering out those responsibilities. It is a process

:38:47.:38:49.

issue. Once we come up with a solution we can, on positively. Do

:38:50.:38:54.

you accept there is a difference between a security threat, people

:38:55.:38:58.

who have been trained towards extremism, but on the other hand, if

:38:59.:39:05.

you have schools who are seen as a broad breeding ground for policies

:39:06.:39:10.

are cultural practices that don't fit in a British way of life, that

:39:11.:39:15.

that is dangerous as well? These are separate issues and it is right that

:39:16.:39:20.

both are reported. Faith schools of all faiths have a role to play in

:39:21.:39:25.

our society and education system. Good one to recognise they need to

:39:26.:39:28.

be forces for community cohesion will stop they need openness and

:39:29.:39:32.

transparency for introducing people to different ideas they would not

:39:33.:39:36.

otherwise encounter. That is good practice. We need to make sure that

:39:37.:39:42.

they are not instead turned into silos and segregation. Have they

:39:43.:39:45.

been? We will find out this afternoon. We have seen many

:39:46.:39:51.

reports. You think that some of these schools have been in full

:39:52.:39:57.

treated by Muslim extremists? I would not want to prejudge any

:39:58.:40:00.

report. You have heard from the schools. Some of these are really

:40:01.:40:05.

respectable schools doing hard work and a good job of education in their

:40:06.:40:10.

local communities. For those names to be tarnished in such a way, it

:40:11.:40:14.

could take years to get their reputation back. Is it wrong to put

:40:15.:40:20.

them into special measures? There are a number of schools in special

:40:21.:40:23.

measures he said have high standards of education. The best and so is to

:40:24.:40:32.

base it on facts, let see how the experts judge what is happening in

:40:33.:40:36.

these schools. Let's not base it on politics and power play. Is it not

:40:37.:40:41.

the case that if you free schools from local education policies you

:40:42.:40:49.

give them the freedom to set out the stink of education and are you

:40:50.:40:51.

saying you don't like it and you're going to change it? The fact that we

:40:52.:40:57.

now have schools setting up their own curriculum and flexible

:40:58.:41:00.

curriculum is to teach and raise standards is vital for raising

:41:01.:41:07.

standards. There are 85 free schools now, 26,000 local authority schools.

:41:08.:41:11.

There are hundreds of local authority schools going into special

:41:12.:41:14.

measures every year and there is an undue focus, just because the

:41:15.:41:18.

enemies of freedom are turning around and trying push it in the

:41:19.:41:25.

opposite direction. You said there was a lack of oversight. If warnings

:41:26.:41:30.

were made in 2010 and the claim is that Michael Gove did not react at

:41:31.:41:36.

the time, is that not because the drug of McCann runs" might whether

:41:37.:41:46.

it is Michael Gove or his officials, it is run from London. Whether clues

:41:47.:41:53.

that if you had looked specifically at Birmingham and provided local

:41:54.:41:57.

oversight that could have flagged up these concerns earlier, those are

:41:58.:42:00.

questions we need the answers to. That is what all MPs will be

:42:01.:42:04.

listening very carefully to win the reports are published. Did Michael

:42:05.:42:09.

Gove inflame the situation with the sort of language used? I do not know

:42:10.:42:14.

whose language it was but it is inflammatory. It does not help

:42:15.:42:18.

anyone to talk about draining the swamp. It does not address the issue

:42:19.:42:24.

we have been focusing on. We want to sort out these problems. We need to

:42:25.:42:29.

use language which is appropriate and which does not cause its own

:42:30.:42:40.

brands. There have been other examples, that just because

:42:41.:42:45.

something is a faith school, there is something wrong with that. I want

:42:46.:42:50.

to see all of the schools treated on a level playing field.

:42:51.:42:59.

The election results have forced all the parties to re-evaluate. Several

:43:00.:43:06.

senior figures have questioned their strategy. The shadow work content

:43:07.:43:09.

and Secretary Rachel Reeves warned last week that sometimes the party

:43:10.:43:14.

took their traditional voters for granted. Now, they are being offered

:43:15.:43:19.

an alternative by UKIP. Peter Hain said yesterday he thought Ed

:43:20.:43:23.

Miliband could win the next election but it would be hard to get an

:43:24.:43:26.

outright majority. Although I do not think UKIP will do

:43:27.:43:32.

as well as they did in the European elections at the general election

:43:33.:43:36.

next year, they will do sufficiently well and there will be other

:43:37.:43:39.

parties, including the Liberal Democrats and the Greens, to make it

:43:40.:43:45.

a much closer contest than perhaps we have been used to before. I think

:43:46.:43:50.

that Ed Miliband is well placed to lead the government in the future

:43:51.:43:56.

and when people see him as Prime Minister, they will realise that

:43:57.:43:59.

they have elected the right person even if they do not see that at the

:44:00.:44:05.

moment. Do you agree? He hinted that Labour's biggest problem is that

:44:06.:44:11.

they do not see Ed Miliband as Prime Minister material? I agree with

:44:12.:44:16.

Peter that Ed Miliband would be a fantastic Prime Minister. But the

:44:17.:44:20.

voters do not see him as a potential prime ministers. -- primer missed a

:44:21.:44:27.

. But if you look at the pathway we have taken from 2010, Ed Miliband

:44:28.:44:34.

has done a fantastic job of commandeering the political agenda.

:44:35.:44:39.

He has taken the lead and I agree with Peter. You could look at it the

:44:40.:44:51.

other way and say, he is being realistic about Ed Miliband, and the

:44:52.:44:56.

way he is viewed by the public. Rachel Reeves has said Labour has

:44:57.:45:01.

been taking voters for granted, that is true, isn't it? I come from

:45:02.:45:07.

Scotland and in Scotland we have had the defeat in 2010, and we

:45:08.:45:13.

recognised that we lost elections for a reason. The electorate are

:45:14.:45:18.

never wrong. We lost because we were not doing and saying the right

:45:19.:45:23.

things. She is saying the core vote for Labour is beginning to drain

:45:24.:45:28.

away, some of its two UKIP? I do not think UKIP will do anywhere near as

:45:29.:45:34.

they did in the European elections. UKIP normally do well in these

:45:35.:45:38.

European elections, it is an election which sadly some people see

:45:39.:45:41.

as being something you can protest in. I think given the choice between

:45:42.:45:52.

Ed Miliband and David Cameron, people will decide to back the party

:45:53.:45:55.

which is looking out for workers, and looking out for fairness. So,

:45:56.:46:02.

why has UKIP been attractive to SAM SMITH:

:46:03.:46:05.

Voters in parts of the north? Do they think that Labour has not

:46:06.:46:09.

answered their questions on issues like immigration? I think it is

:46:10.:46:25.

because people are genuinely angry with the political establishment.

:46:26.:46:31.

But you are not in government? They are angry with politicians of all

:46:32.:46:35.

colour, the political establishment, the energy companies, the markets,

:46:36.:46:39.

and they do not think the establishment works for them, and

:46:40.:46:42.

that is the challenge for the Labour Party. Do you think you can get an

:46:43.:46:53.

people do not want the status quo. The Labour Party has never been a

:46:54.:47:00.

party of the status quo. But you Are a party of the political

:47:01.:47:06.

establishment. Let's talk about the Liberal Democrats, and Nick Clegg is

:47:07.:47:10.

about to make a speech, his first since the party's disastrous

:47:11.:47:15.

performance in the local and European elections. We can see the

:47:16.:47:22.

room filling up just before he comes to take the stand. He will be trying

:47:23.:47:33.

to lay out a distinctive approach to tax and Duncan Hames, what is he

:47:34.:47:37.

going to be saying? Well, I think he will reflect on the very bad results

:47:38.:47:40.

that we had in the elections last month. But he will also look

:47:41.:47:46.

forward, he will be racial in people that whilst we remain very much

:47:47.:47:51.

committed to clearing up the mess in the public finances, that we do not

:47:52.:47:57.

have some ideological desire to continue shrinking the state. But

:47:58.:48:02.

rather, while we have done the job of bringing the public finances back

:48:03.:48:06.

into the balance, we want to invest in a better future for the country,

:48:07.:48:10.

invest in the infrastructure which will be underpinning future economic

:48:11.:48:19.

prosperity. He will be able to spell out the areas where we will be

:48:20.:48:23.

committed to investing in the future of the country. The things you could

:48:24.:48:28.

not do when you came into government, with the rhetoric of

:48:29.:48:37.

posterity, so was that all wrong? Early on in the Parliament, we

:48:38.:48:42.

recognised that we needed to turn things around. Danny Alexander has

:48:43.:48:46.

been championing investment in infrastructure. And future cuts? The

:48:47.:48:55.

Conservatives are going to rely exclusively on cuts to welfare

:48:56.:48:57.

spending, in order to balance the books. We think that is unfair, to

:48:58.:49:03.

look just at the working age poor to balance the books in the future. We

:49:04.:49:09.

are committed to a mansion tax, which will mean that some people

:49:10.:49:12.

with the broadest shoulders will be asked... So people could be

:49:13.:49:19.

expecting higher taxes when we go into the next election? We WILL be

:49:20.:49:32.

asking for a mansion tax, yes. Duncan Hames, arguably, the Liberal

:49:33.:49:37.

Democrats, after those disastrous, as you said, election results, have

:49:38.:49:41.

realised that they have lost a lot of voters to Labour. They are now

:49:42.:49:46.

going to return to the left to try to bring some of those people back

:49:47.:49:50.

of the ones who came to you during the Iraq war period. We only got

:49:51.:49:55.

about 1 million votes in these elections last month. The other

:49:56.:50:01.

parties each did not get much more than 4 million votes. Actually what

:50:02.:50:07.

we saw and where I agree with the analysis of Anas Sarwar earlier, is

:50:08.:50:11.

that there is a large number of people despairing with all of the

:50:12.:50:14.

political parties, they do not trust anyone of us to govern on our own

:50:15.:50:19.

which is why I think it is likely that we will have another coalition.

:50:20.:50:28.

Would you favour your two parties forming a coalition, on the basis of

:50:29.:50:34.

a mansion tax, you want to cut less, you would tax a bit more, these are

:50:35.:50:38.

things which are absolutely in line with what Duncan Hames is talking

:50:39.:50:43.

about? We will be campaigning for an outright majority. Do you agree with

:50:44.:50:50.

spending more on infrastructure? Absolutely. Do you believe in

:50:51.:50:55.

cutting less? I believe we should be taxing more at the top. Do you

:50:56.:50:59.

believe in a mansion tax? Absolutely. So, what is not to like

:51:00.:51:06.

about the two of you in coalition? It is all about ideology, and what

:51:07.:51:13.

people will be voting for. We cannot go back to reckless borrowing, we

:51:14.:51:16.

have to have borrowing which is specifically intended to lay the

:51:17.:51:25.

foundations for a better economy. Under the Labour government, any

:51:26.:51:28.

item of expenditure would be described as investment. Could you

:51:29.:51:34.

do a coalition with Labour? We would have to listen to the electorate.

:51:35.:51:38.

And what about Nick Clegg, can he continue? Absolutely, and he had

:51:39.:51:43.

unanimous support from his colleagues at our committee last

:51:44.:51:49.

week. The political situation reminds me a little bit of Gordon

:51:50.:51:54.

Brown. It is almost like a political death spiral. Is that where you

:51:55.:52:01.

are? Nick Clegg is, not the Conservatives. I mean the coalition?

:52:02.:52:05.

There is a need for the coalition to stay together in order to deliver

:52:06.:52:08.

that economic stability, over five years. But we need to make sure that

:52:09.:52:16.

we stay in coalition right up until May. You want Nick Clegg to use the

:52:17.:52:29.

rest of his political life... He is on a political death spiral, you

:52:30.:52:33.

want him to use the rest of his political life... That is

:52:34.:52:40.

unfortunate, but it was probably due to the legacy of the Lib Dems'

:52:41.:52:43.

manifesto, with the promise on tuition fees, which Nick Clegg

:52:44.:52:49.

probably now regrets. Are they a Liberal party, are they a Social

:52:50.:52:53.

Democratic Party? Until they resolve that, in the long term, I think they

:52:54.:53:01.

will struggle. Fiona Cunningham, Theresa May's special adviser, has

:53:02.:53:04.

fallen on has soared after getting involved in the spat train Theresa

:53:05.:53:13.

May, her boss, and Michael Gove. -- has fallen on her sword.

:53:14.:53:26.

MUSIC PLAYS. # You have got a friend in need.

:53:27.:53:40.

# And you are miles and miles from your nice warm bed.

:53:41.:53:50.

# You've got a friend in need. Yes, you've got a friend in need.

:53:51.:53:58.

# You've got a friend in need. # You've got troubles, I've got

:53:59.:54:11.

them, too. . # There isn't anything I wouldn't do

:54:12.:54:15.

for you. # We stick together, see it through,

:54:16.:54:19.

because you have got a friend in need.

:54:20.:54:23.

# You've got a friend in need. For those of you who did not

:54:24.:54:41.

recognise those advisers being thrust into the spotlight, they were

:54:42.:54:45.

Damian McBride, Charlie Whelan, Jo Moore, Dominic Cummings and Fiona

:54:46.:54:52.

Cunningham. We have not got time to tell you exactly what they all did!

:54:53.:54:56.

We are joined now by Tony Blair's former special adviser, who managed

:54:57.:55:00.

to avoid being sacked! Is it a thankless task? Look, the business

:55:01.:55:06.

of government is by its nature political, and not just

:55:07.:55:11.

administrative. You need to have political staff which are there as

:55:12.:55:14.

well to assist the Secretary of State in their functions and carry

:55:15.:55:19.

out those political duties. I do not think anyone goes into it with a

:55:20.:55:23.

great sense of job security, but it is a fantastic privilege to do it.

:55:24.:55:30.

Isn't the complaint about the Blair years, about sofa government, about

:55:31.:55:34.

special advisers overstepping the mark? We saw Charlie Whelan and

:55:35.:55:38.

Damian McBride, Gordon Brown's people, overstepping what they were

:55:39.:55:44.

supposed to do in terms of negative preteens? If you look at Damian

:55:45.:55:50.

McBride, it is pretty clear he was an representative of special

:55:51.:55:52.

advisers as a whole. -- negative briefings. He did not represent the

:55:53.:55:58.

kind of advisers which I saw when I was with the Labour government. If

:55:59.:56:01.

you look at this story about Fiona Cunningham, ultimately, it is not

:56:02.:56:08.

about one member of staff. It is a story about two senior politicians

:56:09.:56:11.

manoeuvring for the Tory leadership at a time when they should be

:56:12.:56:14.

focusing on what is a really important issue about what is

:56:15.:56:17.

happening in the schools in Birmingham. Should she have been

:56:18.:56:23.

sacked? I do not know the it seems Teresa May has come out worse, given

:56:24.:56:27.

that it was Michael Gove that started it, with the briefings. But

:56:28.:56:34.

Fiona Cunningham printed the letter, that was supposed to be crime, would

:56:35.:56:39.

you have done that? I do not know the circumstances. We have seen

:56:40.:56:44.

statements from Teresa May, and frankly, when ministers claim to be

:56:45.:56:48.

shocked by what their special advisers have got up to, it is about

:56:49.:56:55.

as credible as the captain in Casablanca, I have to say! So, in

:56:56.:57:01.

your mind, special advisers are always acting on the say-so of their

:57:02.:57:06.

ministerial bosses, even in the case of Adam Smith, claiming he acted

:57:07.:57:09.

alone, not doing what Jeremy Hunt had told him to do, was he not

:57:10.:57:16.

telling the truth? One criteria which marks out special advisers is

:57:17.:57:24.

loyalty. You are an adviser to Michael Gove, is it the case that

:57:25.:57:27.

you only do the bidding of the minister? I was an adviser in

:57:28.:57:32.

opposition, paid for by the Conservative Party, not by the

:57:33.:57:37.

taxpayer. I was political because I was working on behalf of the

:57:38.:57:41.

Conservative Party. I think there is a distinction between the

:57:42.:57:44.

personalities of special advisers. Some work on issues, some work on

:57:45.:57:52.

press and communications. I worked on statistics and free schools

:57:53.:57:59.

policy. But when it comes to being in government, you have a corporate

:58:00.:58:04.

responsibility to make sure that you do not damage the government. If any

:58:05.:58:07.

special adviser becomes the story, and does something inappropriate,

:58:08.:58:12.

then I think they need to fall on their sword. Do you think Teresa May

:58:13.:58:15.

will feel wounded without her special adviser? Well, it is a

:58:16.:58:21.

lonely place. You have got thousands of civil servants, so the role of

:58:22.:58:28.

the special adviser is to be that bridge, so yes, it probably will be

:58:29.:58:33.

a lonely place. Are there too many special advisers, yes or no? I

:58:34.:58:40.

cannot answer that one. Well, there is one fewer now. On that prophetic

:58:41.:58:47.

note, we will end it there! The one o'clock news is starting over on BBC

:58:48.:58:51.

One now, and I will be here again tomorrow. Former Home Secretary

:58:52.:58:56.

Charles Clarke will be with me. Goodbye.

:58:57.:59:07.

MUSIC: "The Yeah Yeah Yeah Song" by the Flaming Lips

:59:08.:59:07.

# Yeah-yeah-yeah-yeah Yeah-yeah-yeah-yeah

:59:08.:59:08.

MUSIC: "The Yeah Yeah Yeah Song" by the Flaming Lips

:59:09.:59:12.

# Yeah-yeah-yeah-yeah Yeah-yeah-yeah-yeah

:59:13.:59:15.

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