Gove to apologise after misleading Commons

By politics.co.uk staff

Michael Gove is to “apologise unreservedly” for misleading the Commons in a statement he made to the House on Monday.

In a highly embarrassing development for the government, it transpires that several of the schools Mr Gove had said would see building funding have actually had their projects cancelled.

“We apologise unreservedly for these errors or lack of clarity for parents, teachers and local communities,” the Department of Education said.

Mr Gove was reported to be prepared to write personally to the Speaker to apologise for the error, but this afternoon Mr Bercow suggested it was “more apposite” for him to apologise to MPs in the House.

“If people have got things to say, they should come to the House to say them,” the Speaker said.

The education secretary told the Commons on Monday that several school building and renovation projects in the Building Schools for the Future scheme had been cancelled to save money.

It now appears that the list had 25 errors, meaning schools in Sandwell, Derby, Northamptonshire, Peterborough, Doncaster, Greenwich, Staffordshire, Wiltshire, Lancashire and Bexley received inaccurate information about their future.

Many schools which thought they had received good news on Monday about the continuation of their project now stand to be disappointed.

Steve Eling, deputy leader of Sandwell council, told the BBC that hopes for a new school had been “stolen from under our noses”.