Boris Johnson Doesn’t Plan Autumn Government ‘Reset’ Despite Grading Scandal

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From the coronavirus pandemic to the A-levels fiasco, the current UK government has been in crisis management mode for months. However, Boris Johnson doesn’t look eager for a major reshuffle until after Brexit is (finally) done.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson does not plan to reshuffle the government in the autumn despite growing pressure from within the Conservative Party, The Telegraph reports, citing Whitehall sources.

“There are no plans for a reshuffle in September”, a government source told the newspaper, adding that Johnson “has full confidence in the Education Secretary”.

Gavin Williamson has faced a lot of backlash from the public and from fellow Tories, who felt he damaged the party’s brand, after a controversial algorithm used by an exams body downgraded the A-level results of tens of thousands of students.

The education secretary made an about-face on Monday and promised that A-level and the upcoming GCSE results will be based on teachers’ recommendations, rather than on the algorithm’s calculations.

A major government reshuffle appears to be unlikely before the Brexit transition period ends on 31 December.

“I don’t think the PM is minded to do a big next stage of government reset while the country is still in the midst of the coronavirus crisis and a trade deal is still being negotiated with Brussels”, a Cabinet minister told The Telegraph.

Rather, Johnson is expected to make “minor changes” to his cabinet after the summer recess. These include replacing Defence Secretary Ben Wallace with Anne-Marie Trevelyan, the international development secretary, and possibly firing International Trade Secretary Liz Truss.

“Someone is going to have to go to make way for Anny-Marie but the PM is facing two competing pressures”, another minister was quoted as saying. “One, he is very loyal to the people who have supported him and doesn’t like firing people and two, he cannot change much until Brexit is done and the government’s attention switches from crisis management to economic recovery”.

Sputnik

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