MPs object to planned new head of Ofsted

A COMMITTEE of MPs have rejected the Government's preferred candidate to become the next head of Ofsted, claiming they have 'significant concerns' about her suitability for the role.

Chair of Ofqual Amanda Spielman, who is set to be the next head of Ofsted. Photo: PA Wire.

Amanda Spielman, who is currently chairwoman of exams regulator Ofqual, was put forward by Education Secretary Nicky Morgan to take over from Sir Michael Wilshaw at the end of the year.

But following a pre-appointment hearing, the Education Select Committee said it was unable to support the nomination, arguing that while Ms Spielman has a broad range of experience, it did not feel she had shown enough “passion” for the post.

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Committee chairman Neil Carmichael said: “The new chief inspector will face the task of leading Ofsted to raise standards and improve the lives of children and young people, and we were unconvinced that Ms Spielman would do this effectively.

“Ms Spielman has experience of secondary education but she did not persuade us that she had a clear understanding of the other aspects of the chief inspector’s role, including early years, primary education, further education, and children’s services.”

The Tory MP said there was no urgency to appoint a successor to Sir Michael as his term does not end for six months, and called on Mrs Morgan not to proceed.

Mrs Morgan can choose to disregard the committee’s concerns. In a letter to the MPs she said was “surprised and disappointed” by their concerns, adding that she remained “wholeheartedly in support of Amanda as the best person for this crucial role”.