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In due course

Will a stripped-down spending review have implications for research investment?

Anyone who has had cause to contact the Department for Education with a media query or two in recent years will be more than familiar with the phrase “in due course”. It’s the stock answer for all government press teams when pesky needlers like our hard-working journalists try to find out when something promised long ago might finally make an appearance.

Most recently it was trotted out when our chief correspondent Fiona McIntyre enquired as to when the guidance on ensuring university students can return home safely at Christmas might be released. On 29 September, almost a full month ago, education secretary Gavin Williamson said in the Commons that it would be published “shortly”.

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