Ofqual 'lacks technical competence' to do its job

22nd October 2010 at 01:00

Expertise within England's exams watchdog is spread so thin that it has to borrow staff from the organisations it is supposed to be regulating, according to an exam board head.

Andrew Hall, Assessment and Qualifications Alliance (AQA) chief executive, says Ofqual now lacks the "technical competence" and expertise necessary to effectively carry out some of the tasks expected of it by the Coalition government.

AQA had lent the regulator a senior member of staff to do some work on qualification development, he told The TES. "I am happy to loan them people but is that how it should be?" Mr Hall said. "Ofqual is spread too thin."

Last month it was announced that Isabel Nisbet, the watchdog's chief executive, would be following chief regulator Kathleen Tattersall out of the door in March.

Mr Hall said university education departments should be drafted in to carry out some of Ofqual's work.

An Ofqual spokesman said: "Like other regulators we encourage occasional secondments to and from the organisations we regulate. This benefits the exporting and importing organisations and the individual."

He said Ofqual had a strong record of high-quality reports and carrying out regulatory inquiries.

Andrew Hall profile, pages 18-19.

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