Primary Education News

10 Jun '14

News David Cameron's press conference: Politics live blog

Merkel hints she won't insist on Juncker being next commission president Cameron's press conference in Sweden - Summary 11.47am BST Douglas Alexander, the shadow foreign secretary, has put out this statement about David Cameron's press conference.Of course Europe needs to change, but David Cameron has so far been unwilling or unable to set out any detailed EU reform plans of his own. Labour wrote to David Cameron last month setting out five specific and achievable changes to make Europe work better for Britain, and called on him to adopt these proposals or set out his own detailed agenda for reform. 11.12am BST Here are the main point from the press conference.I made myself clear by saying that I am for Jean-Claude Juncker. But when I made that statement in Germany I also made the point that we act in a European spirit. We always do that, because otherwise you would never reach a compromise. You cannot just consign to the backburner the question of the European spirit. Threats are not part and parcel of that spirit. That is not part of the way in which we usually proceed.The topic of freedom of movement, which is heatedly debated in Great Britain, but also in Germany by the way, is an important one. We want to show a united front to the European Court of Justice. We are in favour of freedom of movement. But we want to ensure that it is not abused in any way. It is in that sense that Great Britain and Germany and other countries cooperate and work for the same objective.I would say freedom, tolerance, respect for the rule of law, belief in personal social responsibility, and respect for British institutions. Those are the things that I would hope would be inculcated in any school in Britain. 10.04am BST The press conference is over.There was not anything remarkable in what the four leaders said, although there was a clear hint from Angela Merkel, the German chancellor, that she is willing to compromise on Jean-Claude Juncker, her preferred choice for next president of the European commission, and accept someone else.Cameron, "like a Labrador" when it comes to lake swimming, not keen on life jacket. But Swedes insisted: a number of drownings here recently 10.00am BST Final questionsTo Mark Rutte 9.59am BST Q: Would an independent Scotland be allowed to stay in the EU?Angela Merkel says, as a rule, she never, ever responds to hypothetical questions. She won't answer this one. 9.51am BST Another question for Angela MerkelQ: Will you insist on the European council having the final say? 9.46am BST They are now taking questions.To Angela Merkel 9.43am BST Mark Rutte, the Dutch prime minister, is speaking now.We need a new kind of Europe in the future, he says. 9.41am BST David Cameron is speaking now.He says they are four centre-right leaders who agree that the EU needs to change. 9.39am BST Angela Merkel, the German chancellor, is speaking now.She says in future many jobs in the EU will come from the digital economy. 9.38am BST The press conference is starting.Fredrik Reinfeldt, the Swedish prime minister, and host, opens. He is speaking in English. 9.34am BST Some British colleagues have been tweeting from the venue.Here in Sweden at official residence for David Cameron presser with Merkel, Swedish and Dutch PMs. Most tranquil. pic.twitter.com/zBEWxZxc2JCam/Merkel/Reinfeldt/Rutte presser soon at Harpsund, Sweden. Lake glittering, press centre in a barn with real agricultural implements 9.30am BST There is a live feed to the press conference here. 9.30am BST David Cameron is about to hold a press conference with Angela Merkel, the German chancellor, Fredrik Reinfeldt, the Swedish prime minister, and Mark Rutte, the Dutch prime minister.They have been holding a mini summit in Sweden. David Cameron has intensified his campaign to block Jean-Claude Juncker from becoming the next president of the European commission, with No 10 warning like-minded EU leaders his appointment would amount to a "stitch-up".As Labour joined the Tories and Liberal Democrats in rejecting Juncker's candidacy, Cameron claimed the attempt by the European parliament to install the former Luxembourg prime minister amounted to a power grab "through the back door". 9.25am BST For the record, here are today's YouGov GB polling figures.Labour: 37% (no change since YouGov in the Sunday Times)This months Polling Observatory comes in the aftermath of the European Parliament elections and the so-called UKIP earthquake for the electoral landscape. Despite much volatility in the polls ahead of those elections, with a few even putting the Conservatives ahead of Labour for the first time in over two years, underlying support for both main parties remained stable over the course of the month. Labour may have fallen early in the month in the run-up to the European elections, or the Conservative leads may have been the result of random variation. In any event, by the end of the month, we had Labour polling at 33.8%, just 0.2 points down on their support a month ago. The Conservatives are also broadly flat at 30.9%, 0.3 points below their standing a month ago. The Lib Dems have suffered slightly more of a post-election hangover, perhaps set back by infighting over the botched coup by Lord Oakeshott and the widespread ridicule over the Clegg/Cable beer-pulling photo op, on 9.3%, down 0.4 points. UKIP support remained stable at record high levels, as they enjoyed a moment in the limelight around the European Parliament elections. We have them rising 0.2 points on last month to 14.9%, their highest support level to date. Note that all these figures are based on our adjusted methodology, which is explained in detail below. 9.06am BST Sources at the Department for Education are rejecting Sir Michael Wilshaw's claim on Newsnight last night that Michael Gove blocked his call two years ago for Ofsted to be allowed carry out no notice inspections. Yesterday Gove announced that they would go ahead, and Wilshaw's comments implied that - two years late - Gove had finally seen sense.Senior education sources deny Michael Gove blocked introduction of snap school inspectoins two years agoSenior education sources say Sir Michael Wilshaw agreed not to proceed with snap inspections in 2012 cos of union disquietSenior education sources say Ofsted have always had power to introdce snap inspections but have used too sparinglySenior Education sources say power to extend snap school inspections rests with Ofsted not Michael Gove 8.51am BST Here is the key point from Nick Clegg's Today interview. Clegg says Michael Gove should impose tougher curriculum rules on academies and free schools. In his interview, he said parents would be "surprised" to learn that they did not have to teach the national curriculum. But Gove has championed academies and free schools precisely because they have this freedom. This is what Clegg said:Many people will be surprised to know that some of these schools, while they were under a duty to deliver a balanced curriculum, as Michael Wilshaw has pointed out in his report, they are not under any obligation to actually teach anything from the national curriculum whatsoever. So I think maybe one of the things we need to think about is how do we make sure that a core body of knowledge, a core curriculum, is taught in all schools in our country, regardless of the nameplate at the school gates. Because all parents would, broadly speaking, expect that their children are taught a core body of knowledge regardless of which school they're in. That might be one of the things that we need to do in the future.provide much greater clarity to all schools (including academies and free schools) on what should be taught in a broad and balanced curriculum 8.32am BST The Clegg interview is over.He has been engaged in a running battle with Michael Gove over education for some time now, and this morning he used to mount another raid on the Department for Education. Gove has enthusiastically backed the creation of new academies, not least because he is in favour of head teachers having more freedom over how they teach, but Clegg said he wanted more centralisation. Schools should have to teach a core body of knowledge, he said. 8.23am BST Q: Do you agree with David Cameron that having Jean-Claude Juncker as the next president of the European commission would be a mistake?Yes, says Clegg. 8.22am BST Q: Turning to general politics, how do you define "rich"? You want the rich to pay more in tax.Clegg says one way of answering would be to say people in high-value properties should have to pay more. 8.18am BST Q: Should snap inspections be introduced?Clegg says Ofsted should have the power to do this. 8.15am BST Q: Tolerance is a key British values. What happens when a head tells girls to wear a headscarf?Clegg says the greatest antidote to extremism in any community is moderation. 8.13am BST John Humphrys is interviewing Nick Clegg.Q: Who's values are British values? 8.07am BST Michael Gove's response to the reports triggered by the so-called "Trojan horse" allegations in Birmingham continue to generate controversy.Last night, on Newsnight, Sir Michael Wilshaw, the head of Ofsted, said Gove originally blocked Wilshaw's call for Ofsted to be allowed to conduct no notice inspections - an idea Gove yesterday endorsed.Nick Clegg reacts to assertions that schools should "actively promote British values" following recent Trojan Horse allegations (8.10am) Continue reading...

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