One of the few traditional Conservatives to have served on the Tory front bench under Cameron, Paterson was Secretary of State for Northern Ireland before being promoted to the more high profile role of Secretary of State for Defra.

Candidate of the day

Owen Paterson

One day to go and Sir John Major has weighed in. “Labour divides to rule. To win votes they will turn rich against poor; north against south; worker against boss." We hope we don't wake up with them on Friday.

Hero of the day

Sir John Major

Another awful Labour woman. The fact Ed Miliband’s carved his pledges in stone doesn't mean he might not break them, campaign chief Lucy Powell has said.

Villain of the day

Lucy Powell



Back marriage. Restore grammar schools. Leave the EU.

Chris McGovern

Chris McGovern

Chris McGovern is the Chairman of the Campaign for Real Education. A retired head teacher with 35 years’ teaching experience, Chris is a former advisor to the Policy Unit at 10 Downing Street under two Prime Ministers.
All posts by Chris McGovern

Chris McGovern: TV’s star teacher makes brainwashing the young his lefty mission

The Times Educational Supplement (TES) on January 7th carried this call to arms: “Teachers need to step up: they can help to fight the Donald Trump and Brexit reactionary revolution…In this post-truth era, it’s up to teachers to ensure that young people are being empowered and encouraged to challenge and question.” The author was Oliver Beach, […]


Chris McGovern: Academic freedom about to be crucified by another mad ministerial idea

It looks as though universities will soon have to sacrifice much of their academic freedom in order to remain solvent. The Higher Education and Research Bill  requires them to subscribe to a so-called ‘teaching excellence framework’ (TEF) in order to qualify for government funding. The Bill is currently being debated in the House of Lords. At first […]


Chris McGovern: Here’s one comp that’s getting it right

Imagine a comprehensive school full of enthusiastic, well-mannered and considerate children from a range of ethnic, linguistic and social backgrounds. Imagine a school that is hugely successful in realising the academic potential of its pupils even though over half come from families that are deprived enough to qualify for “pupil premium” funding. Imagine a school […]


Chris McGovern: Teaching needs more talented men

An investigation by The Times has confirmed that schools are finding it increasingly difficult to retain and to recruit head teachers. Eleven per cent of heads left their posts in 2014-15. While many simply moved school or retired, a growing number are resigning. The shortfall is becoming significant. According to the union of which I […]


Chris McGovern: Moral example makes heroes for the young

Are heroes important to you? If they are, you are not alone. I suspect that most of us look up to role models of some sort. How should schools respond to the natural desire of children to seek the certainty that heroic role models appear to offer? Mostly, these days, traditional heroes are either debunked […]


Chris McGovern: Teachers’ leaders defend their patch as we slump in global league tables

Teachers’ leaders are urging parents to ignore this year’s school league tables for 11-year-olds. They claim that the SATs tests in English and maths, on which the tables are based, were too hard. “This data is not worth the paper it is written on,” according to Russell Hobby, the general secretary of the National Association of […]