Amanda Spielman is confirmed as next Ofsted inspector

FE Week is reporting that Amanda Spielman has been formally approved as the next Ofsted chief inspector.

Doubts had been raised over whether the new education secretary Justine Greening would continue with her predecessor Nicky Morgan’s choice for the top job at the inspectorate.

But the Department for Education just confirmed to FE Week that she has been approved by the Privy Council – meaning she has been “formally appointed” as chief inspector – although she won’t start in the post until after Sir Michael Wilshaw is due to step down in December.

Ms Spielman, who was chair of Ofqual, was first announced as the government’s preferred candidate to succeed Sir Michael Wilshaw last month.

But following a pre-appointment hearing on June 29, the House of Commons Education Committee report raised “significant concerns”, criticising Ms Spielman’s lack of “passion for the role” and the fact she has not worked as a teacher before, spending much of her career in corporate finance.

Ms Morgan subsequently announced her intentions to push ahead with the appointment in a letter to the committee’s chair Neil Carmichael.

More at: It’s official… Amanda Spielman confirmed as next Ofsted chief inspector

What do you think? Is the DfE right to ignore the concerns of the Education Committee? Do you think Amanda Spielman is the right person for the job? And is it now a much harder job, given the events of the past few weeks? Let us know what you think ~ Jon.

Are you a trainee teacher, NQT, teacher, headteacher, parent or  just someone who cares about education and has something to get off  your chest in a Schools Improvement Guest Post? Follow this link for more details at the bottom of the page.

Don’t forget you can sign up to receive our daily email bulletin (around 7am) with all the latest schools news stories. Your details will never be given to anyone else and you can unsubscribe at any stage. Just follow this link.

We now have a Facebook page - please click to like!


Primary school bans clapping to protect students who are sensitive to loud noises
Academies warn Brexit 'damaging science'
Categories: 1st POST, News and Policy.


  1. DenrooneyDenise

    SchoolsImprove JustineGreening How can she not be approved as part of interview process, but then appointed? What’s the motive?

  2. DenrooneyDenise SchoolsImprove JustineGreening To ensure Ofsted is not as independent as it’s supposed to be.  Spielman’s appointment at behest of Ed Secretary shows that.

  3. The heads of supposedly independent non-ministerial departments should not be in the gift of ministers.   They should be appointed by an independent body.

  4. Alan OSullivan

    So what’s the point in having an Education Select Committee then if their expertise; scrutiny and findings are deliberately overlooked?

  5. Alan OSullivan

    Janet2 Too true. Does such a procedure occur within the selection of other key personnel attached to non-ministerial depts? (E.g. Chairperson of BBC)

  6. TW

    Alan OSullivan  You say that as if MPs know what they are talking about – those days are long gone. The legislature is occasionally consulted by the executive as a courtesy, not for them to decide anything any more than is absolutely necessary.

  7. Alan OSullivan Janet2   As far as BBC is concerned, there appears to be input from DCMS which, again, could compromise their independence:  ‘BBC Trustees are appointed by the Queen on advice from DCMS (Department for Culture, Media and Sport) ministers through the Prime Minister. When new Trustees are needed the posts are publicly advertised. Trustees are chosen on merit and the process is regulated by the Office of the Commissioner for Public Appointments.’
    When Gove moved to the Justice department he chose Peter Clarke and Dame Glenys Stacey to be heads of key justice inspectorates.  There were claims Gove had headhunted them.  Both were subsequently appointed.

    It should also be remembered that Gove headhunted Wilshaw for Ofsted chief (although he had cause to regret it after the honeymoon period ended).
    Such practices should be stopped as I’ve already said.

  8. @TW DenrooneyDenise But Parliament does exist.  It certainly has its faults but it’s better than alternatives.  Perhaps you’d prefer a dictatorship of a supposedly democratic leader like Erdogan who appears to be using a failed coup to purge all opposition.

  9. TW

    Janet2  The legislatures of Turkey and the UK seem to have much in common – both seem largely useless and at the mercy of Executive decisions.

Let us know what you think...