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Friday, January 12, 2007 

What about my privacy, cries the hounded Ms Kelly....

Congratulations then to Ruth Kelly, who has somehow decided that taking the Mirror to the supine and servile Press Complaints Commission is a good idea:

Ruth Kelly, the communities secretary, is taking the Daily Mirror to the Press Complaints Commission for revealing that her son goes to a private school.

The Mail on Sunday broke the story, but did not use names.

"My sole concern throughout has been the welfare of my young son. I believe his right to privacy has been breached," she said in a statement.

Richard Wallace, the Mirror's editor, said: "We are confident that it was entirely right that we identify Miss Kelly so the public could decide whether her action was appropriate, given that they were clearly at odds with government policy."

She might have a case if her son had actually been identified, but he hasn't. All we know is that he has learning difficulties, that he used to attend a school in the Tower Hamlets borough of London, and that he is now going to attend a private school somewhere in Oxfordshire. It might be argued that he will have suffered as a result, even though he hasn't been identified, but the Mirror can also fight back, knowing that their revelation has resulted in a public debate, both about those who suffer from learning disabilities and the provision for them in standard state schools.

Ruth Kelly herself instead looks as if she's trying to close the door after the horse has bolted. We haven't had an explanation as to why 6 special schools rated either good or excellent by Ofsted with Tower Hamlets were rejected as not good enough for her son's needs. Instead she's trying to hide behind her decision by claiming that her son's privacy has been breached, ignoring the apparent double standards of being a piss-poor education secretary who did nothing to help those who have the same problems as her own son. Censorship, as ever, is the last resort of a scoundrel.

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