Education secretaries of state, as your editorial states, are indeed "transient beings who move on before the extent of their incompetence is fully revealed", and Hinds`s refusal is not only an example of typical Tory cowardice, but also an acknowledgment that his tenure will be short-lived (Editorial, 08/03/19). Having no idea or willingness of how to tackle the teacher recruitment crisis, and no moral compass to admit the effects of underfunding, Hinds will rightly be never taking up more than one sentence in any Education History text-book.
What is particularly galling about Tory education policies since 2010 has been the idea that imposing "a rigidly structured curriculum, certain kinds of learning and precisely defined bodies of knowledge " is the key to "shaping young minds". Strangely, those "young minds" do not belong to children whose parents are rich enough to pay for schools in the independent sector, where the inspection system is nothing like as rigorous as the one Ofsted imposes on the state sector. In private schools there is more freedom to teach what is thought suitable, and crucially permission to move away from GCSE and A-levels to examinations which have far more A*/A grades per entry, and are allowed to include coursework as part of the assessment process. Their alternative to A-levels, like the option preferred to GCSE, is run by Cambridge Assessment, and the exams set and marked mostly by teachers in the private sector, and with less regulations than everyone else`s traditional route to university.
Labour`s manifesto will probably include introducing VAT on school fees and tightening up the rules for charitable status eligibility, but they could add independent schools to Ofsted`s remit, and insist all rules applying to state schools have to be followed in the private sector as well. A-levels and BTecs should be the only qualifications acceptable for UK university entrance!