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Watchdog will speed up

The new head of the inspection complaints procedure has pledged to play a more independent and transparent role.

Elizabeth Derrington said she would publicise the adjudications she makes, probably by posting them on a dedicated website. "I won't be including details identifying individuals but I want to be able to show how I have addressed the issues and show a consistent and rigorous approach to the different problems," she said.

"There have been summaries of cases in the complaints adjudicator's annual report, but I would wish be to be fuller than that, and also to do it more promptly."

Ms Derrington was appointed by the Department for Education and Skills and will be on its payroll. The previous incumbent, Elaine Rassaby, had long criticised the fact that she was employed directly by the Office for Standards in Education.

Ms Rassaby said: "The greatest problem is trying to address complaints about judgments in an efficient and productive way," adding that procedures needed to be speeded up to make sure any disputed judgments were addressed promptly before they were published.

Another change to Ms Derrington's remit is that it also includes complaints relating to the adult learning inspectorate.

Ms Derrington is a solicitor and an accredited mediator. After working in law for 20 years she left to pursue a broader career. She is chair of Northumbria probation board, an inspector with HM magistrates courts service inspectorate and a non-executive director of the Northgate and Prudhoe NHS trust.

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