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Gove wants holiday cuts and longer days for teachers

Teaching staff will face longer working days and shorter summer holidays if Education Secretary Michael Gove gets his way.

Mr Gove, speaking on ITV's Daybreak programme, said: "If you love your job then there is, I think, absolutely nothing to complain about in making sure you have more of a chance to do it well."

Such a move would benefit poorer children, he suggested, as "poorer children from poorer homes lose learning over the long summer holidays".

His comments came after shadow education secretary Stephen Twigg suggested last week that lengthening the school day may be a good way of preparing youngsters for the world of work.

A number of schools had taken up the initiative and it appeared to have positive results, he said.

Mr Gove told BBC Breakfast that the measures would provide an opportunity for teachers to "focus".

He said: "This process only kicks in when it's clear there are problems and that term is an opportunity for a teacher who has resisted every encouragement so far to improve what they do to finally focus on getting their act together, or acknowledge that perhaps, whatever their talents, they should move on to another profession."

He added: "We're introducing new and tougher teacher standards as well so that teachers will have to meet new criteria of whether or not children are progressing, whether or not they are doing better at the end of the year."

When asked if a teacher whose class does not improve will be "in the firing line", he replied: "Yes."

Mr Gove added: "It's their responsibility to ensure that children behave and that children succeed."

He refused to be drawn on how many teachers would be affected by the proposals, saying it would be up to headteachers to make decisions on where improvement was needed in their staff.



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