Appointment of Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Education, Children’s Services and Skills Contents


Conclusion about the candidate

10.Ms Spielman’s evidence raised for us a number of significant concerns about her suitability for the post. Regrettably, on the basis of these concerns, we are unable to give our support to her appointment.

Wider reflections on the role

11.Notwithstanding our views on the candidate, we have been concerned for some time about the lack of expertise on children’s services amongst Ofsted’s senior management, particularly as Ofsted does not currently have a permanent director of children’s social care. Ofsted’s social care work is currently overshadowed by that on education. In context of recent high profile failures in children’s services over recent years, it deserves a higher profile and is an issue on which strong leadership from Ofsted is needed.

12.Our predecessor Committee called for Ofsted to be split into an Inspectorate for Education and an Inspectorate for Social Care.16 We have reflected upon Ms Spielman’s evidence and that which we have taken so far in this Parliament about the role of Ofsted. In our view, the remit of Ofsted was too large at the time of our predecessors’ report and remains so today. At a time of almost permanent change in education, and increasing reform of children’s social care, we are moving towards a point at which the job of HMCI will be too great for one person. Placing Ofsted’s social care work into a separate inspectorate would help it to gain a greater profile.

13.We reiterate our predecessors’ proposals about the future of Ofsted and call on the Department to make the following changes:

16 Education Committee, Second Report of Session 2010–12, The Role and Performance of Ofsted, HC 570-I

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06 July 2016