Geoff Barton, General Secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, responds to the latest tranche of leaked messages from Matt Hancock published by the Daily Telegraph and his exchange with then Education Secretary Gavin Williamson.
“This sneering exchange between two Cabinet ministers at a time of the greatest national emergency since the second world war shows an appalling lack of respect for teachers. Education unions, including our union, worked incredibly hard to engage constructively with the government throughout the pandemic. We constantly had to sense-check and disentangle the reams of confused guidance they issued, and were often wrong-footed by bizarre policy decisions which were then followed by an inevitable U-turn. It was an absolute shambles and the two individuals involved in these snide insults were at the heart of that shambles.”