Gove discussed creating 'Murdoch Academy' during meetings with tycoon

 

The Education Secretary Michael Gove discussed Rupert Murdoch sponsoring one of the Government's flagship academies during his meetings with the proprietor.

Mr Gove has met Mr Murdoch six times for breakfast, lunch or dinner since the Coalition came to power in May 2010 – more than any of his Cabinet colleagues.

Mr Murdoch has known the Education Secretary since Mr Gove worked for him on The Times 15 years ago and regularly socialises with him when he comes to London. But during their meetings in the past 15 months, the two men appear to have had matters of substance to discuss.

Mr Gove has also sought the advice of Joel Klein, one of Mr Murdoch's executive vice-presidents at his New York-based company News Corp, who has recently been put in charge of the internal investigation into company employees' systemic hacking of voicemail messages.

Mr Klein was formerly head of New York's Board of Education and Mr Gove sought his advice over his own plans to set up a network of independently run state-financed "free" schools in the UK. Mr Klein had been behind the setting-up of charter schools in the US – praised by Mr Gove for their contribution in raising standards in inner city districts of the US. Mr Gove wanted his "free" schools to be given the same freedom to run their own affairs.

When Mr Klein was hired by News Corp six months ago, he was tasked with expanding Mr Murdoch's commercial education interests around the world. In the event, the discussions about a Murdoch-sponsored academy have not borne fruit. A visit to an academy was arranged for Mr Gove with Rebekah Brooks, the former News International chief executive, James Harding, editor of The Times, and Will Lewis, a manager at News International also tasked with the company's internal investigation into hacking.

The shadow Education Secretary, Andy Burnham said: "It reveals a lot about Michael Gove's priorities that he has found time to meet with News Corp executives 21 times since he became Education Secretary but in his first seven months in the job he didn't manage to visit a single sixth-form college, further education college or special school."

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Personal Tax Senior

£28000 - £37000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...

Recruitment Genius: Customer and Markets Development Executive

£22000 - £29000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company's mission is to ma...

Recruitment Genius: Guest Services Assistant

£13832 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This 5 star leisure destination on the w...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Account Manager

£20000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Account Manager is requ...

Day In a Page

A nap a day could save your life - and here's why

A nap a day could save your life

A midday nap is 'associated with reduced blood pressure'
If men are so obsessed by sex, why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?

If men are so obsessed by sex...

...why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?
The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3

Jon Thoday and Richard Allen-Turner

The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3
The bathing machine is back... but with a difference

Rolling in the deep

The bathing machine is back but with a difference
Part-privatised tests, new age limits, driverless cars: Tories plot motoring revolution

Conservatives plot a motoring revolution

Draft report reveals biggest reform to regulations since driving test introduced in 1935
The Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

The honours that shame Britain

Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

'When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race'

Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

International Tap Festival comes to the UK

Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border
Doris Lessing: Acclaimed novelist was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show

'A subversive brothel keeper and Communist'

Acclaimed novelist Doris Lessing was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show
Big Blue Live: BBC's Springwatch offshoot swaps back gardens for California's Monterey Bay

BBC heads to the Californian coast

The Big Blue Live crew is preparing for the first of three episodes on Sunday night, filming from boats, planes and an aquarium studio
Austin Bidwell: The Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England with the most daring forgery the world had known

Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England

Conman Austin Bidwell. was a heartless cad who carried out the most daring forgery the world had known
Car hacking scandal: Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked

Car hacking scandal

Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked
10 best placemats

Take your seat: 10 best placemats

Protect your table and dine in style with a bold new accessory