Rod responds to the reshuffle

6 Aug 2014

Rod Clark, PET's Chief Executive, writes:

"The Prime Minister’s ministerial reshuffle 14th July 2014 has meant wholesale change to the team of ministers most responsible for education in prisons.

Rod Clark, PET Chief Executive

Former prisons Minister Jeremy Wright MP has now been promoted into the Cabinet as Attorney General; his prisons brief goes to Andrew Selous MP as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Justice with special responsibility for HM Prison and Probation Service; the former skills Minister Matthew Hancock has moved on to a shared brief between the Business Department and the Energy Department; the skills brief has passed to Nick Boles MP, whio was appointed as Minister of State jointly for the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills and the Department for Education as Minister of State for Skills and Equalities.

It is good to see that having responsibilities relating to prison education has not been a negative for career development; Jeremy Wright’s elevation to the Cabinet is very striking and it can surely do no harm to have another voice around the table with an understanding of prison issues. But both new ministers will inevitably have to learn their briefs before they will be in a position to make much of an impact. And they certainly will have plenty to keep them busy; Andrew Selous on the pressing issues around the major changes arising from the Transforming Rehabilitation agenda, and Nick Boles on his responsibilities for equalities (an area that had not formed part of Matthew Hancock’s portfolio).

I wish them the best in coming to grips with their responsibilities around prison education and I look forward to meeting them to help them understand better the importance of this essential element of social and criminal justice policy that can affect so many lives for the better."