Conservative MP Nicky Morgan has been appointed education secretary in yesterday's (July 15th) cabinet reshuffle, replacing Michael Gove.
Ms Morgan, who is the MP for Loughborough and is also minister for women and equalities, pledged to work alongside teachers and schools in her new role.
"I am delighted to become Education Secretary and continue as minister for women and equalities," she said.
"I know that education can be the single greatest transformer of lives. It is also a crucial part of this government's long-term plan.
"I look forward immensely to working alongside parents, teachers and schools to ensure we have world class schools and the skills that will get our young people great jobs."
News of Mr Gove's departure came as a surprise to many, but it was welcomed by the National Union of Teachers, which said his reforms, including the extension of free schools and the use of unqualified teachers, had led to him lose the support of the profession.
The National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers, however, said the most pressing issue facing the education sector is not the change of education secretary, but rather the need for a policy change.
While Mr Gove sought to raise standards in the nation's schools and make assessments more rigorous, his often combative approach and the rapid nature of his reforms made him unpopular with many in teaching jobs.
Brian Lightman, of the Association of School and College Leaders, said he had met Mr Gove and had no doubt that he was passionate about improving the lives of young people. He said time would tell whether the impact of his reforms will be positive.
Mr Lightman cautioned against another wave of reforms, saying the task of the new education secretary should be to ensure schools and colleges have time to implement the large number of changes currently underway.
Ofsted chief Sir Michael Wilshaw appeared surprised when he learnt of the change while conducting a call-in session on LBC Radio yesterday. He said he admired Mr Gove and that he has helped to transform the education system.
Posted by Charlotte Michaels