Number 10 is seeking a partner in the reform of Whitehall. Boris Johnson today begins the search for a Brexiteer to run the Civil Service, after its current head was ousted ahead of a wholesale overhaul of Whitehall. Cabinet Secretary Sir Mark Sedwill will stand down in September after losing a power struggle with Dominic Cummings, Mr Johnson’s chief adviser. The Civil Service union accused Downing Street of spending months undermining Sir Mark with “corrosive and cowardly” anonymous briefings. Mr Johnson intends to reform Whitehall by recruiting more Brexiteers and relocating government departments to the regions. He made it clear to Sir Mark that he was not the man to drive the revolution. Read Sir Mark’s diplomatic response.
£1.5bn for schools to bounce back from Covid
Boris Johnson will today announce a £1.5billion school building blitz as he pledges to put children “front and centre” of Britain’s post-Covid economic revival. The new money for schools will form part of a recovery programme modelled on the New Deal of Thirties America that will be detailed in a major speech tomorrow promising tens of billions of pounds for new projects. After more than three months of lockdown, Mr Johnson – who has been criticised in recent weeks for a lack of public appearances – wants to shift the focus to the future. Political Editor Gordon Rayner explains what we know about a series of upbeat announcements expected this week that will set out how the UK will recover from the deepest recession in generations.
Meanwhile, head teachers have threatened to undermine the Government’s plan to reopen schools in September by refusing to punish parents who keep their children at home. As Bill Gardner reports, teaching unions have said many will use a loophole in the law to avoid levying fines on parents who fail to send their children to classes. Read our guide to how and when schools are set to reopen.
Sun, sea and… streets free of cars this summer
Known for its sun, surfing and winding streets, St Ives has long been a popular destination for tourists. But it is those streets – in what many consider one of Britain’s most beautiful seaside towns – that would have made social distancing impossible, with visitors pressed up against passing cars. So as hotspots in Cornwall and beyond prepare for an influx of tourists from July 4, visitors can expect a different feel from before lockdown. Callum Adams explains plans to remove all but the “most essential vehicles from the busiest streets” between 11am and 4pm.
At a glance: More coronavirus headlines
Also in the news: Today’s other headlines
Trans row | JK Rowling accused a shadow minister of treating female trauma as “white noise” for suggesting she exploited her experience of sexual assault. Labour MP Lloyd Russell-Moyle claimed the author had been “using” her history to discriminate against the trans community. Rowling said he had aligned himself “squarely with men’s rights activists” by demanding that women “give up our hard won sex-based rights”.
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Comment and analysis
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Around the world: India’s health system on the brink
Patients are being turned away from understaffed and ill-equipped hospitals in India as coronavirus cases surge and a lack of PPE fuels infections. Read this dispatch from Joe Wallen in New Delhi and view a gallery of how the world is coping with coronavirus.