Labour has 39% lead over Tories on education

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Labour has a lead of 39 percentage points on education over the Tories, compared with a figure of just 12 percentage points in 1993, according to a Gallup poll. Labour sources said yesterday that its private polls showed that it was even further ahead on school standards.

The party believes its recent attack on progressive teaching methods and its criticisms of comprehensive schools have paid dividends. The decision to promote Labour education policies through newspapers which traditionally support the Government has been deliberate. David Blunkett, its education spokesman, will try to exploit the advantage in a debate in the Commons.