Department for Education
|Jurisdiction||Government of the United Kingdom|
|Headquarters||Sanctuary Buildings, Great Smith Street, London, England, United Kingdom|
|Annual budget||£58.2 billion (2015–16)|
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|Politics of the United Kingdom|
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The Department for Education (DfE) is a department of His Majesty's Government responsible for child protection, child services, education (compulsory, further and higher education), apprenticeships and wider skills in England.
A Department for Education previously existed between 1992, when the Department of Education and Science was renamed, and 1995 when it was merged with the Department for Employment to become the Department for Education and Employment.
The Secretary of State for Education is Rt Hon. Gillian Keegan MP. Susan Acland-Hood is the Permanent Secretary.
The expenditure, administration and policy of the Department for Education are scrutinised by the Education Select Committee.
The DfE was formed on 12 May 2010 by the incoming Coalition Government, taking on the responsibilities and resources of the Department for Children, Schools and Families (DCSF).
In June 2012 the Department for Education committed a breach of the UK's Data Protection Act due to a security flaw on its website which made email addresses, passwords and comments of people responding to consultation documents available for download.
In July 2016, the department took over responsibilities for higher and further education and for apprenticeship from the dissolved Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.
- Committee of the Privy Council on Education, 1839–1899
- Education Department, 1856–1899
- Board of Education, 1899–1944
- Ministry of Education, 1944–1964
- Department of Education and Science, 1964–1992
- Department for Education, 1992–1995
- Department for Education and Employment (DfEE), 1995–2001
- Department for Education and Skills (DfES), 2001–2007
- Department for Children, Schools and Families (DCSF), 2007–2010
The department is led by the Secretary of State for Education. The Permanent Secretary from December 2020 is Susan Acland-Hood. DfE is responsible for education, children's services, higher and further education policy, apprenticeships, and wider skills in England, and equalities. The predecessor department employed the equivalent of 2,695 staff as of April 2008 and as at June 2016, DfE had reduced its workforce to the equivalent of 2,301 staff. In 2015–16, the DfE has a budget of £58.2bn, which includes £53.6bn resource spending and £4.6bn of capital investments.
The Department for Education's ministers are as follows:
|Gillian Keegan MP||Secretary of State||Overall responsibility for the department; early years; children's social care; teacher recruitment and retention; the school curriculum; school improvement; academies and free schools; further education; apprenticeships and skills; higher education.|
|Nick Gibb MP||Minister of State for Schools||School accountability and inspection (including links with Ofsted); Standards and Testing Agency and primary assessment; supporting a high-quality teaching profession including professional development; supporting recruitment and retention of teachers and school leaders including initial teacher training; Teaching Regulation Agency; National Tutoring Programme; Education Investment Areas (jointly with Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Minister for the School and College System)); school revenue funding, including the national funding formula for schools; school efficiency and commercial policy; pupil premium; behaviour, attendance and exclusions; school sport; digital strategy and technology in education (EdTech).|
|Robert Halfon MP||Minister of State for Skills, Apprenticeships and Higher Education||Strategy for post-16 education; T Levels; qualifications reviews (levels 3 and below); higher technical education (levels 4 and 5); apprenticeships and traineeships; funding for education and training for 16 to 19 year olds; further education workforce and funding; Institutes of Technology; local skills improvement plans and Local Skills Improvement Fund; adult education, including basic skills, the National Skills Fund and the UK Shared Prosperity Fund; higher education quality; student experience and widening participation in higher education; student finance and the Lifelong Loan Entitlement (including the Student Loans Company); international education strategy and the Turing Scheme.|
|Claire Coutinho MP||Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Children, Families and Wellbeing||Strategy for schools, including standards and selection; qualifications (including links with Ofqual); curriculum including relationships, sex, and health education and personal, social, health and economic education; admissions and school transport; early years and childcare; children's social care; children in care, children in need, child protection, adoption and care leavers; disadvantaged and vulnerable children; families, including family hubs and early childhood support; special educational needs and disabilities (SEND), including high needs funding; alternative provision; school food, including free school meals; children and young people's mental health, online safety and preventing bullying in schools; policy to protect against serious violence.|
|The Baroness Barran MBE||Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the School System and Student Finance||Academies and multi-academy trusts; free schools and university technical colleges; faith schools; independent schools; home education and supplementary schools; intervention in underperforming schools and school improvement; school governance; school capital investment (including pupil place planning); Education Investment Areas (jointly with Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Minister for the School Standards)); education provision and outcomes for 16 to 19 year olds; college governance and accountability; intervention and financial oversight of further education colleges; careers education, information and guidance including the Careers and Enterprise Company; reducing the number of young people who are not in education, employment or training; safeguarding in schools and post-16 settings; counter extremism in schools and post-16 settings; departmental efficiency and commercial policy.|
The management board is made up of:
- Permanent Secretary – Susan Acland-Hood
- Director-General, Social Care, Mobility and Disadvantage – Indra Morris
- Director-General, Higher and Further Education Group – Paul Kett
- Director-General, Early Years and Schools – Andrew McCully
- Chief Financial and Operating Officer, Operations Group – Mike Green
- Chief Executive, Education & Skills Funding Agency – David Withey
Non-executive board members:
- Marion Plant OBE; CEO of the Midland Academies Trust and Principal
- Baroness Ruby McGregor-Smith CBE; Former Chief Executive of Mitie Group
- Ian Ferguson CBE; businessman
As at 2 August 2016, the DfE has five main sites:
- Piccadilly Gate, Manchester
- 2 St Paul's Place, Sheffield
- Bishopsgate House, Darlington
- Cheylesmore House, Coventry
Agencies and public bodies
Education and Skills Funding Agency
The Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) was formed on 1 April 2017 following the merger of the Education Funding Agency and the Skills Funding Agency. Previously the Education Funding Agency (EFA) was responsible for distributing funding for state education in England for 3- to 19-year-olds, as well as managing the estates of schools, and colleges and the Skills Funding Agency was responsible for funding skills training for further education in England and running the National Apprenticeship Service and the National Careers Service. The EFA was formed on 1 April 2012 by bringing together the functions of two non-departmental public bodies, the Young People's Learning Agency and Partnerships for Schools. The SFA was formed on 1 April 2010, following the closure of the Learning and Skills Council. David Withey is the agency's Chief Executive.
Teaching Regulation Agency
The Teaching Regulation Agency (TRA) is responsible for regulation of the teaching profession, including misconduct hearings. Its predecessors include the National College for Teaching and Leadership (to 2018), the Teaching Agency (to 2013) and the Training and Development Agency for Schools (from 1994).
Standards and Testing Agency
The Standards and Testing Agency (STA) is responsible for developing and delivering all statutory assessments for school pupils in England. It was formed on 1 October 2011 and took over the functions of the Qualifications and Curriculum Development Agency. The STA is regulated by the examinations regulator, Ofqual.
The DfE is also supported by 10 public bodies:
|Non-ministerial departments||Ofqual; Ofsted|
|Executive non-departmental public bodies||Equality and Human Rights Commission; Office for Students; Office of the Children's Commissioner; Student Loans Company|
|Advisory non-departmental public bodies||School Teachers' Review Body|
|Other||Office of the Schools Adjudicator|
Education, youth and children's policy is devolved elsewhere in the UK. The department's main devolved counterparts are as follows:
- Department of Education
- Executive Office (children and young people)
National Curriculum 2014
The Department for Education released a new National Curriculum for schools in England for September 2014, which included 'Computing'. Following Michael Gove's speech in 2012, the subject of Information Communication Technology (ICT) has been disapplied and replaced by Computing. With the new curriculum, materials have been written by commercial companies, to support non-specialist teachers, for example, '100 Computing Lessons' by Scholastic. The Computing at Schools organisation has created a 'Network of Teaching Excellence'to support schools with the new curriculum.
Post-16 area reviews
In 2015, the department announced a major restructuring of the further education sector, through 37 area reviews of post-16 provision. The proposals were criticised by NUS Vice President for Further Education Shakira Martin for not sufficiently taking into account the impact on learners; the Sixth Form Colleges' Association similarly criticised the reviews for not directly including providers of post-16 education other than colleges, such as school and academy sixth forms and independent training providers.
Funding and grants
In 2018, The Department for Education confirmed their commitment to forming positive relationships with the voluntary and community sector.
In 2020 the department began funding the National Tutoring Programme which employed private companies to deliver the tuition including at least one which uses children as tutors, paying them £1.57 per hour. Tutors received up to £25 of the between £72 and £84 per hour the government paid the companies.
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- ^ "Susan Acland-Hood". GOV.UK.
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- ^ Matt Foster, New Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy swallows up DECC and BIS – full details and reaction, Civil Service World (14 July 2016).
- ^ "DfE monthly workforce management information: 2016 to 2017". GOV.UK.
- ^ This article incorporates text published under the British Open Government Licence: "Our ministers". GOV.UK. Department for Education. Retrieved 27 September 2022.
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- ^ Skills Funding Agency, Annual Report and Accounts 2010–11, accessed 15 April 2017
- ^ Education and Skills Funding Agency, accessed 4 January 2018
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- ^ "Standards and Testing Agency". Department for Education.
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- ^ "Home". The Executive Office.
- ^ Welsh Government | Education and skills. Wales.gov.uk. Retrieved on 13 August 2013.
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- ^ Robertson, Alix (20 April 2016). "Shakira Martin re-elected as NUS vice president for FE". FE Week. Retrieved 26 April 2017.
- ^ Offord, Paul (2 November 2016). "Student focus for Sir Vince Cable's FE comeback". FE Week. Retrieved 26 April 2017.
- ^ Burke, Jude (8 July 2016). "MPs launch inquiry into post-16 area reviews". FE Week. Retrieved 26 April 2017.
- ^ "Grants and contracts from the Department for Education". Children England.
- ^ "UK tutoring scheme uses under-18s in Sri Lanka paid as little as £1.57 an hour". The Guardian. 19 March 2021. Retrieved 19 March 2021.
- ^ "England's 'catch-up' tutors are being short-changed by private employers". The Guardian. 28 February 2021. Retrieved 19 March 2021.
- Alexiadou, Nafsika; Lange, Bettina (January 2013). "Deflecting European Union influence on national education policy-making: the case of the United Kingdom". Journal of European Integration. 35 (1): 37–52. doi:10.1080/07036337.2012.661423. S2CID 154982097.
- Ministerial departments of the Government of the United Kingdom
- Department for Education
- Education in England
- Education ministries
- Education policy in the United Kingdom
- Governance of England
- Public education in the United Kingdom
- Government agencies established in 2010
- 2010 establishments in England
- 2010 establishments in the United Kingdom