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Baroness Estelle Morris helps York celebrate 50 years of Education

Posted on 7 November 2013

Former Education Secretary Baroness Estelle Morris will deliver a major public lecture at the University of York to help commemorate 50 years of Education at York.

Baroness Morris, who started her career as a teacher in Coventry in 1974, will discuss whether, despite the rhetoric, education policy reflects more continuity than politicians admit.

She says: “There is widespread agreement that schools policy has been subject to constant change over the last thirty years. Those working in the profession often argue that there is no underlying rationale for the change and political whim is the driving force.

“Yet, the argument is also heard that there is little difference between the education policies the major parties offer. Can both these perceptions be accurate? After decades of change and further revolution promised, what is the balance between continuity and change in education in schools policy?”

The fully booked lecture will be held at the Berrick Saul Building on Thursday, 14 November and is part of a year-long calendar of activities organised by York’s Department of Education to celebrate its 50th Anniversary.

We are very pleased that Baroness Morris is taking part in our 50th Anniversary celebrations

Professor Judith Bennett

Professor Judith Bennett, Head of York’s Department of Education, says: “We are very pleased that Baroness Morris is taking part in our 50th Anniversary celebrations and very much look forward to hearing her views on education policy - past, present and future.

“York’s Department of Education enjoys a national and international reputation for the excellence of its teaching and research. The lecture series was developed as both a celebration of our work and as an opportunity for members of the public to find out more about developments in the field of education.”

Baroness Morris was elected as a member of Warwick District Council in 1979 and led the Labour Group for seven years. In 1992, she was elected as MP for Birmingham Yardley, and in 1997 became Parliamentary Under-Secretary in the Department for Education and Employment, becoming Minister for School Standards in 1998.

In 2001, she was appointed Secretary of State for the Department for Education and Skills. She resigned from this post in 2002, but returned to the front bench eight months later as Minister in the Department of Culture, Media and Sport. She was appointed to the House of Lords after the May 2005 election.

Baroness Morris serves on a number of charitable bodies connected to both Education and the Arts, and was the Pro Vice-Chancellor of Sunderland University from 2005 to 2009. In 2007 she became Chair of the Strategy Board of the Institute for Effective Education at the University of York.

The 50 years of Education at York lecture on 14 November is fully booked.

For information on other Department of Education 50th Anniversary events, visit

Notes to editors:

Contact details

Caron Lett
Press Officer

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