Former Surbiton High girl Nicky Morgan has ousted Michael Gove as Education Secretary in a Cabinet reshuffle this morning.
The Conservative Loughborough MP, 41, was elected in 2010, and had already served at Prime Minister David Cameron's top table as minister for women and equalities.
Mr Gove will become Chief Whip.
Mrs Morgan’s former English teacher has said she remembers her pupil as well-behaved and hard-working.
Marilyn Mason taught English at Surbiton High School for 17 years, and left as head of sixth form.
She said: "She was just a nice, well-behaved, polite girl. She was hard-working, certainly."
Asked whether she hoped Mrs Morgan would repair shattered relations between teachers and the Department for Education, Mrs Mason said: "I think it's a pity to have people in charge of state education who haven't experienced it themselves."
The coalition's schools policy saw “too much interference from the centre, too much imposition of a very old-fashioned curriculum," she added.
Mrs Morgan's father, Peter Griffith, served as a Conservative councillor in St Mark's and Seething Wells in Surbiton, for four years after being elected in 1974.
He won 1,363 votes - the highest tally in the ward.
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