Charles Anthony Raven Crosland became Secretary of State for Education and Science in February 1965; it was not a particularly sought-after post in Labour circles. No previous Labour Minister had succeeded in having much effect on the English education system. Sir Charles Trevelyan in the 1920s had all his plans destroyed by the Roman Catholic hierarchy; Ellen Wilkinson, in 1945, was ill for much of the 18 months in which she held the job; George Tomlinson, Wilkinson’s successor, was pawn of his civil servants; while Crosland’s immediate predecessor, Michael Stewart, had turned out to be quite exceptionally timid in his mere 12 weeks of office. Probably the best model he had was Rab Butler, Minister of Education throughout the Second world War and a Conservative. Butler had done more to eliminate educational class divisions than any Labour Minister of Education.
KeywordsPublic School Civil Servant Comprehensive School Labour Party Grammar School
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