Exams

Pearson hires Ofqual’s standards director after BTEC fiasco

Ofqual's director of standards Cath Jadhav will take over as responsible officer for exam board Pearson in July

Ofqual's director of standards Cath Jadhav will take over as responsible officer for exam board Pearson in July

6 Apr 2023, 10:47

More from this author

Ofqual's director for standards Cath Jadhav will move to Pearson to become the exam board's responsible officer

Exam board Pearson has hired Ofqual’s director of standards to take over as its responsible officer after last year’s BTECs fiasco.

Cath Jadhav will begin the new role on July 1, the exam watchdog announced yesterday.

The move has been approved under the government’s business appointment rules, Ofqual said, with “appropriate conditions put in place to protect both Crown information and any information that may be proprietary, sensitive or of commercial relevance to regulated entities”.

“As Cath is moving to a role with a conflict of interest, she has commenced an immediate period of garden leave,” it added.

Pearson left thousands of BTEC students in limbo after delays to results last year.

Following a review by Ofqual, which outlined a series of measures to prevent a repeat this year, Pearson said it would release results under embargo around a week before results are released.

Ofqual has also launched a Vocational and Technical Qualification (VTQ) taskforce to monitor the “safe delivery of results” in 2023, which includes a senior leader from Pearson.

Pearson was also fined a record-breaking £1.35 million by Ofqual last summer for allowing examiners to remark their own work and issuing incorrect certificates.

The failures were in relation to the awarding of GCSE and A-levels between 2016 and 2019.

Jadhav, who has worked for the regulator for 14 years, was the executive director for standards, research and analysis as well as acting executive director for general qualifications.

She resigned from her role at Ofqual on March 31.

Responsible officers serve as the authoritative point of contact for the regulator in relation to activities undertaken by the awarding organisation.

This includes any matters relating to Pearson’s compliance with its Conditions of Recognition and its ability to undertake the efficient development, delivery and award of qualifications.

Prior to Ofqual, Jadhav was previously a principal manager for business and social science subjects for exam board AQA.

She has also served as Ofqual’s acting director for strategy, risk and research, as well as its director for standards and comparability.

The watchdog’s chief regulator Jo Saxton said: “Cath’s contribution to Ofqual’s work is significant and I know that she will continue to act in the interests of students at Pearson.”

Sharon Hague, managing director at Pearson, said the firm was “delighted” to make the appointment.

“She brings a wealth of experience and insight from across her career – whether that’s working for Ofqual or other organisations more broadly across the awarding sector,” she added.

More from this theme

Exams

Civil service boss: Covid exams U-turn ‘most awful governing ever’

Simon Case said in August 2020 that 'lots of people should lose their heads' over exams fiasco

Samantha Booth
Exams

Exams: GCSE and A-level prices soar by inflation-busting 6.4%

CPI over the same period was 3.8%, but Ofqual says prices in line with inflation over a longer period

Freddie Whittaker
Exams

‘Change on an unprecedented scale’: Ofqual responds to ABS plans

Qualifications reform risks more exams, 'unregulated' A-levels and students unprepared for higher study, says exams regulator

Freddie Whittaker
Exams

Hacking homework for exam breach suspect

A 16-year-old boy has been cautioned in connection with an exam board cyber attack

Samantha Booth
Exams

Deprived schools more likely to see progress 8 scores fall

Analysis comes as Covid impact and potential Labour changes may spell end to measure in its current form

Freddie Whittaker
Exams

Progress 8 pause: Heads call for wider review

But some heads have warned the sector could creep back to GCSE pass grades being the accountability 'king'

Samantha Booth

Your thoughts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *