Balls accused of breaching Speaker’s ruling on statements

Author: By Trevor Mason, Press Association

Tory former minister Christopher Chope (Christchurch) called for Mr Balls to
apologise to MPs for announcing the scrapping of the Government’s National
Strategies for education in the media.

In a point of order, Mr Chope said: “On Wednesday Mr Speaker said when
ministers have key policy statements to make the House must be the first to
hear them.

“In clear breach of that ruling, today the Schools Secretary has announced
through the Guardian and the BBC that the Government has abandoned its
literacy and numeracy strategy.

“Either Mr Balls is himself illiterate or contemptuous of the Speaker’s ruling
– or both.”

He asked Deputy Speaker Sylvia Heal what powers she had to press Mr Balls to
come to the House and apologise.

Mrs Heal said she would bring Mr Chope’s remarks to the attention of Mr Bercow.

Ministers’ move will end centralised prescription of teaching methods and
oversight of literacy and numeracy hours in primary schools and save the
Government up to £100 a million a year currently spent on private
consultants.

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