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Quote of the weekend

The coalition’s “decentralisation” con.

What happened to decentralisation? What happened to the coalition mantra of getting rid of quangos? This is centralised control of school funding...How the hell can you fund a school in rural Devon on the same basis as inner-city Birmingham?

* Les Lawrence, the Conservative cabinet member for schools on Birmingham City Council, responding to a front-page report in the Financial Times that "all state schools in England will be directly funded from Whitehall for the first time, under radical government plans to sideline local authorities from managing education spending, a role they have occupied for more than a century".

As I've written before, Michael Gove may talk the talk of "decentralisation" and the "empowerment" of parents, but he is a power-hungry, centralising, near-autocratic secretary of state for education.