Education quangos should be abolished

By Liz Stephens

Abolishing education quangos would save the government over £600 million a year, right-wing thinktank the Centre for Policy Studies (CPS) has found.

In a report published today CPS recommends the dissolution of seven education quangos including the two largest – the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (QCA) and the Training and Development Agency (TDA).

The TDA’s costs had, the report said, grown year-on-year by 13 per cent.

It controversially recommends abolishing the national curriculum and instituting employment-based teacher-training.

It also recommends reducing the remit and funding of Partnerships for Schools (PfS), the school buildings quango, and making the General Teaching Council a voluntary organisation.

The CPS said their proposals were intended to “reverse permanently” New Labour’s education project.

Commenting on the proposals, Liberal Democrat schools spokesman David Laws said: “The rise of education quangos has been incredibly expensive and there’s little evidence to suggest they have raised standards.

“At a time when public finances are being squeezed, we must ask if these quangos are necessary.

“When infant class sizes are rising and schools need more money to support struggling pupils, we need to be looking at ways to divert more money to the front line rather than to bureaucrats.”

Quangos now consume at least £34 billion of public money a year, according to recent Cabinet Office estimates.