Chris Woodhead, understandably, has a lot to say about education, whether you like what is coming out of his mouth or not.
He cut a fairly controversial figure during his near five years as Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Schools.
And, despite leaving that role in 2000, Mr Woodhead has continued to maintain a strong interest in all things education, both in his position as Professor of Education at the University of Buckingham and chairman of the Cognita Schools Group.
No surprise then that when he makes noises around education policy, people tend to sit up and listen.
Mr Woodhead is currently causing a stir following publication of his new book, entitled A Desolation of Learning.
Not surprisingly, it paints a fairly bleak picture of past education reforms and the Labour spending over the last 13 years, and pointedly asks: ‘Is this the education our children deserve?’
He has previously, and unashamedly, laid claim to the existence of 15,000 ‘incompetent’ teachers actively working in the country’s schools.
And he is not afraid to possibly make more enemies in his book by suggesting that our schools, and education in general, are actually worse today than when Labour took office in 1997.
But, in his position sat on the political fence, he also doubts whether the Conservatives have the answer to the current problems facing the world of education.
Mr Woodhead, who will hopefully not be too long in deciding to visit the West Midlands to promote his book, also turned his attention to Birmingham, for so long a Labour-run authority before the present Tory-Lib Dem alliance took control.
He is not afraid to suggest that the city, for whom the eminent educationalist Professor Tim Brighouse worked his academic magic, has got it wrong.
Despite the current diversity that exits throughout its schools, he argues that Birmingham still has too many ‘bog-standard’ comprehensives, a phrase infamously created by former spin doctor Alastair Campbell.
It is with much sadness that Mr Woodhead recently revealed that he has been battling motor neurone disease for much of the last three years.
Like him or hate him, it is hoped that such a condition will not prevent him from continuing to voice his opinion on the things that clearly matter so much to him, as well as the rest of us.