Graham Stuart to step down from education select committee

After eight years in post, Graham Stuart has said that he will not be putting his name forward to be chair of the education select committee this parliamentary term.

The Conservative MP held the post for five years and was a committee member for a further three, but is now understood to be putting his name forward to become chair of the culture, media and sport committee.

Gathering prominence in recent years, the education select committee questions ministers and publishes reports on Department for Education activity. Most recently this included independent reviews of the Trojan Horse inquiries and the academies and free school programme.

The committee’s chairship is likely to remain with a Conservative MP and Neil Carmichael has confirmed to Schools Week that if it does he will stand for election.

He said: “I am certainly considering it if it becomes available to a Conservative. We don’t know yet exactly how the committee will be made up as it is still to be negotiated between the two main parties.”

Caroline Nokes, Conservative MP and a previous committee member, is also understood to be a contender for the role.

The committee includes 11 backbench MPs.

Labour MP Ian Mearns confirmed to Schools Week that he intends to stand for election to be returned to the committee. Pat Glass – also a Labour MP – is due to announce her decision next week.

The select committee’s previous make-up included one Liberal Democrat MP – David Ward – who lost his seat at the general election. With just eight MPs in Parliament, it is not known if a Lib Dem representative will receive a place on the committee.

Elections for all select committees are due to take place early next month.

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