Deputy Speaker Nigel Evans today poked fun at former Health Secretary Matt Hancock as he made his first appearance in the Commons since hs appearance on the hit reality TV show. The Suffolk MP was introducing a Private Members Bill on greater support for children with dyslexia.
Referring to his placing in the cotest, Mr Evans said: “This is the third bill of the day and I know Mr Hancock that you seem to be making a habit of coming third these days.”
Mr Hancock replied: “I’m not quite sure what to make of that but I am honoured to be third today and let’s see how that goes.
“It is also a pleasure to be hear today and to be clean and well fed.”
The former minister, who has lost the Conservative whip for his trip to Australia, was forced to resign last year after he was caught on camera breaking lockdown rules.
One of the issues he said he wanted to raise while he was on the ITV was dyslexia and he said he was “proud to be dyslexic” himself and have overcome the problems that causes for reading and writing.
During his time in the jungle, Mr Hancock was only registered of mentioning dyselxia once as he found himself nominated to carry out a number of bushtucker trials to win food for himself and his campmates.
The ex-minister became a focus of the show where he survived elminations and beat celebrities like ex-England rugby player Mike Tindall before it was won by England Jil Scott.
In his speech Mr Hancock pointed out that only one in five dyslexic children are diagnosed at school.
His bill was seeking screening for all children.
He also wanted all teachers to be trained to help dyslexic children in the classroom.
Famous dyslexics include Apple founder Steve Jobs and former US President Abraham Lincoln.
Mr Hancock described how he only discovered his dyslexia at Oxford University when his tutor said he could talk about ideas but not get them down on paper.
On the Second Reading of his bill, he said: “If we believe in a world class education system we will pass this bill.”
The Government have promised to continue to work with him to bring the bill forward.
Earlier he tweeted: “I’m calling for universal dyslexia screening in every primary school and improved teacher training for dyslexia It is an outrage that only 1 in 5 dyslexic children leave school identified & that teachers do not need training to support dyslexic children This must change.”
Supporting him, former health minister Jackie Doyle Price pointed out that “half the prison population” is filled with people who have had dyslexia.
Education minister Claire Coutinho said that the government is “very committed” to helping children with special needs.
The bill was talked out without a vote and will resume 3 March.
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