Do we have a Secretary of State who simply invents statistics off the top of his head? Janet Downs has previously documented his use of dodgy surveys
and his claim to have visited schools that simply don't exist
. The DfE has now confirmed another case of him making up statements:
Michael Gove told parliament earlier this year: “Teach First, and “Teach Firsters”, who were damned as “unqualified teachers” at the time, are now responsible for securing an improvement in every school in which they operate"
Now Teach First does some great work, but that doesn't mean Mr Gove should be able to invent claims and exaggerate their achievement. "Every" school?
I submitted an FOI to ask: In how many of those 673 schools did results improve? Mr Gove's claim is that the results improved in every one of those 673 schools: "every school in which they operate".
The DfE has responded to my question, asked a second time after they dodged it the first time: Following a search of the Department’s paper and electronic records, I have established that the information is not held by this Department in the format requested.
So there was no basis to Gove's claim. I have written
about this before but the DfE has now confirmed that there is no information to substantiate Mr Gove's statement.
Will Michael Gove now apologise to Parliament for misleading it?