‘The government’s nominee for head of the schools watchdog, Ofsted, has been opposed by a committee of MPs who said she lacked passion and leadership ability.
The decision by the Conservative-dominated education select committee that it will not back Amanda Spielman for the post of Her Majesty’s chief inspector of schools is believed to be only the second time a parliamentary committee has sought to block a government nominee for public office.
The result is an embarrassment for the education secretary, Nicky Morgan, who selected Spielman to replace the current Ofsted head, Sir Michael Wilshaw, and a headache for David Cameron, who must decide whether to expend political capital in appointing Spielman over the committee’s objections.’ - Guardian
‘It provoked a firm defence of her suitability by Ms Morgan, but she declined to say for certain whether or not she would now press ahead with the appointment.
Chair of the Education Committee Neil Carmichael said: “The government’s preferred candidate has a broad range of experience, but failed to demonstrate to us the vision and passion we would expect.”
He went on to say although Ms Spielman had good experience of secondary schools, her understanding of early years, primary education, FE, and children’s services seemed lacking.
He added: “Ms Spielman’s responses on child protection were particularly troubling and did not inspire confidence that she grasped the importance of Ofsted’s inspections in preventing children being held at risk through service failure.”’ – FE Week
‘Defending herself in a letter to Carmichael, Spielman claimed that she made clear in her evidence that she “understood the breadth and scope of the role”, and emphasised she had a different style to her predecessor.
“I want to intervene to prompt action, rather than to comment on every issue in education or children’s services,” she said.
The committee also recommended a permanent deputy chief inspector of children’s services be appointed, with a remit to develop plans for separating Ofsted into two inspectorates, one for education and skills, the other for children’s services.’ – Schools Week
‘Kevin Courtney, acting general Secretary of the National Union of Teachers, said :“The fact that the Select Committee have rejected the Government’s recommended candidate for the post of Ofsted Chief Inspector shows how little confidence there is in Nicky Morgan’s judgement.
“Thankfully the Committee, like teachers, believe that the next Chief Inspector needs teaching experience and knowledge of all education sectors. It is telling that Nicky Morgan does not share this view and preferred a candidate strongly aligned to the academies movement, rather than one with demonstrable knowledge, understanding and experience of key areas such as early years and primary education.
"The announcement today reflects the total shambles this Government’s education policy is in.”’ - Telegraph