Secretary of State for Education and Skills: Wikis

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The Secretary of State for Education and Skills was the chief minister of the Department for Education and Skills in the United Kingdom government. The position was discontinued on 28 June 2007 with the creation of the new posts of Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families and Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills (itself now a defunct Cabinet rank, superseded by the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills). The last Secretary of State for Education and Skills was Alan Johnson MP, however with numerous ministerial reincarnations with educational responsibility -arguably Ed Balls MP and Lord Mandelson are joint Education Secretaries; responsible for junior and higher education, respectively.

A Committee of the Privy Council was appointed in 1839 to supervise the distribution of certain Government grants in the education field. The members of the Committee were the Lord President of the Council, the Secretaries of State, the First Lord of the Treasury, and the Chancellor of the Exchequer. From 1857 a Vice President was appointed who took responsibility for policy.

In 1899 the Board of Education Act abolished the Committee and instituted a new Board, headed by a President, as of 1 April 1900. The members were initially very similar to the old Committee and the President of the Board was the Lord President of the Council; however, from 1902 this ceased to be the case and the President of the Board was appointed separately (although the Marquess of Londonderry happened to hold both jobs from 1903 to 1905).

The Department of Education and Science was created in 1964 with the merger of the offices of Minister of Education and the Minister of Science. In 1992 the responsibility for science was transferred to Cabinet Office’s Office of Public Service, and the department was renamed Department of Education. In 1995 the department merged with the Department of Employment to become the Department for Education and Employment (DfEE) and in 2001 the employment functions were transferred to a newly created Department for Work and Pensions, with the DfEE becoming the Department for Education and Skills (DfES). In 2007 under Gordon Brown's new premiership, the DfES was split into two new departments; the Department for Children, Schools and Families, and a Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills, under two new Secretaries of State.

The ministerial office of the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills has, of late 2009, been amalgamated into the new ministerial office of the resurgent politician, Peter Mandelson, ennobled as Lord Mandelson as the newly created Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills - itself an amalgamation of the responsibilities of the Secretaries of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform and Innovation, Universities and Skills - the Secretary of State has remit over Higher Education policy as well as British business and enterprise.

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Vice-President of the Committee of the Council on Education

President of the Board of Education

Minister of Education

Secretary of State for Education and Science

Secretary of State for Education

Secretary of State for Education and Employment

Secretary of State for Education and Skills

Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families

  • Ed Balls (since 28 June 2007) with responsibility of infant, primary and secondary education

Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills

  • John Denham (28 June 2007- 5 June 2009) had responsibility of higher education

Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills

  • The Lord Mandelson (5 June 2009-) with responsibility of business as well as higher education

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