Select Committee on Education and Skills Appendices to the Minutes of Evidence

Annex 7



  In autumn 1993, Professor Stewart Sutherland, HM Chief Inspector at the time, gave notice of his intention to leave at the end of the academic year.

  The then Department for Education engaged Korn Ferry International to conduct an executive search and Recruitment and Assessment Services (RAS) worked alongside them to administer the process. A small team of staff from the Department were also involved in the recruitment exercise.

  Advertisements were placed in the Times, Sunday Times, Daily Telegraph and Sunday Telegraph in early February 1994 and the Permanent Secretary wrote to the Head of the Civil Service, copied to other Permanent Secretaries, seeking nominations. The advertised closing date for applications was 4 March.

  On 17 March, Korn Ferry, the First Civil Service Commissioner and DFE representatives, including the Permanent Secretary conducted a paper sift of the 35 candidates who applied, and agreed a long-list of 17 candidates.

  On 11 April, the Selection Panel, which comprised the First Civil Service Commissioner as chair, alongside the DFE Permanent Secretary and relevant Deputy Secretary, a businessperson and an educationalist, agreed a short-list of five candidates. A psychologist interviewed these candidates and references were taken.

  The final interviews took place on 29 April and the panel's recommendations were reported to the Secretary of State. On 8 June, the Secretary of State announced that he would be recommending that Chris Woodhead be appointed as HM Chief Inspector of Schools. The Privy Council, which met on 22 June confirmed this decision and Chris Woodhead's appointment was made for an initial period of five years from 1 September 1994. His re-appointment, until 31 August 2003, was confirmed at a meeting of the Privy Council, held on 13 April 1999.


  Chris Woodhead's resignation was announced on 2 November 2000 and his last day at OFSTED was 30 November. Under these circumstances, David Blunkett, the then Secretary of State announced that Mike Tomlinson, who at the time was OFSTED's director of inspection, would be appointed as Chief Inspector from 1 December for a period of a year, after which the post would be filled permanently through competition. He was given delegated powers until the appointment was confirmed at the meeting of the Privy Council held on 13 December. The current Secretary of State, Estelle Morris decided to extend Mike Tomlinson's contract for a further five months and this decision was confirmed by the Privy Council at its meeting on 18 July 2001.

  On 19 July, the Secretary of State announced that recruitment for the new Chief Inspector would begin in September. Ms Morris also said:

    "I am grateful to Mike Tomlinson for agreeing to extend his one-year appointment by five months. The extension, until 30 April 2002, will give continuity to the review of the school inspection system in which he will be playing a major part this autumn. It will also enable him to prepare and publish his annual report for 2000-01."


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