Putting a reference to himself on the spine is the least of problems with Michael Gove’s £370,000 vanity bibles, sent to every state-funded primary and secondary school in England. The book appears to have been distributed with no consideration of the needs of disabled students — including to special schools where visual impairments and dexterity problems render it unusable by pupils.
A source familiar with the situation told Scrapbook:
“This is a huge cock up. The small print means students with sight problems can’t read it, while the thin paper rules it out for many students with physical disabilities. Why didn’t they consult with special schools?”
While fielding criticism about the appropriateness of distributing the bibles to religiously diverse English schools, Gove’s team seemed to forget about disabled students. The references to a raft of third-party online learning materials provided to accompany the book make no reference to accessibility or special educational needs.
In his covering letter to headteachers, Gove wrote:
“I believe it is important that all pupils … should appreciate this icon, and its impact on our language and democracy.”
Except if you’re blind, it seems.