Michael Gove: Long school summer holidays should be consigned to history

Long school summer holidays should be consigned to history, Gove declares as he warns of more strikes by teaching unions Education Secretary calls for longer school days and shorter holidays Warns Britain is not keeping pace with other countriesUnions accused of putting teachers' needs before children By Matt Chorley, Mailonline Political Editor PUBLISHED: 14:01 GMT, 18 April 2013 | UPDATED: 16:29 GMT, 18 April 2013 Education Secretary Michael Gove said children needed longer school days and shorter holidays to keep pace with other countries The traditional long summer school holiday is a relic of the 19th century and must be consigned to history, Michael Gove declared today. The Education Secretary said it was wrong that terms were still scheduled for a time when children were needed to help out on farms and most mothers stayed-at-home. And he warned of more strikes ahead, accusing unions of lacking ambition and putting the needs of teachers before those of children in their care.

Have we got Pughs for you! Looking back at a year in laughter from the Mail"s brilliant pocket cartoonist

Have we got Pughs for you! Looking back at a year in laughter from the Mail's brilliant pocket cartoonist | UPDATED: 01:30 GMT, 31 December 2012 From the golden Olympic summer to the sodden, rain-drenched winter, it's been a topsy-turvy sort of year – but our cartoonist Pugh has been there to help us all through it. Here is a selection of the most heart-warming, thought-provoking and just plain hilarious drawings Pugh has produced in 2012

Children go free and 500 off summer package holidays in tour giant price war

Children go free and 500 off summer package holidays in tour giant price war | UPDATED: 00:10 GMT, 26 December 2012 Britain's two travel giants have launched a price war with families being promised savings of between 200 and 560 on summer package holidays. Thomas Cook and Thomson are going head to head with a series of eye-catching deals, including big discounts and free child places. In a first, Thomas Cook has decided to make sure all of its advertised prices, whether online or on the high street, are the same.

Is frosting the coolest trend so far? Facebook pictures of people in summer gear posing in freezing conditions

Is frosting the coolest trend so far Facebook group takes pictures of themselves in summer gear posing in freezing conditions | UPDATED: 11:25 GMT, 17 December 2012 If winter's already getting you down, you might want to resort to the latest Facebook trend and pretend the temperature can't stop you.

Midwives give way to Downton in Christmas TV battle: Shows will no longer clash after BBC moves festive special start time

Midwives give way to Downton in Christmas TV battle: Shows will no longer clash after BBC moves festive special start time | UPDATED: 01:36 GMT, 5 December 2012 It may be the season of goodwill, but when it comes to Christmas TV schedules it seems the broadcasters are determined to fight for the best slot. The BBC has been forced to move Call the Midwife festive special back to 7.30pm in a bid to avoid a clash with Downton Abbey. ITV1 had originally scheduled its two hour Christmas special for 9pm, while it was thought the BBC wanted to run its 75 minute show at 8pm