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Report on appointments to the board of the Office for Students

Blog post by Peter Riddell

Monday 26 February 2018

Peter Riddell, the Commissioner for Public Appointments, has completed his investigation into the recent appointments to the Board of the Office for Students and published his report.

The Commissioner’s role is to regulate and monitor appointments made by ministers to the boards of public bodies to ensure they are in line with Government’s Governance Code 2016.

The Commissioner investigated these appointments under Section 4(3) of the Public Appointment’s Order in Council 2016.  He has also replied to correspondence he received about the appointments to the OFS board, and written to the Minister for Implementation and the relevant select committees.

The Commissioner has also published a short annex on proportionate and practical due diligence for public appointments as requested by departments, ministers and the Committee on Standards in Public Life.

Peter Riddell commented:

‘My investigation uncovered a number of areas where important principles in the Governance Code were breached or compromised in the appointments to the board of the Office for Students.  In my experience, this episode is unrepresentative of the hundreds of public appointments that take place each year, but it is important that lessons are learned – not least so that talented people from a wide range of backgrounds are willing to put themselves forward to serve on the boards of public bodies.’

For all media enquiries please contact Maggie O’Boyle on 07880 740627

Letter to Oliver Dowden MP

Letter to Roberta Blackman-Woods MP

Letter to Gordon Marsden MP

Letter to Sam Gyimah MP

Letter to Sarah Wollaston MP

Letter to Rt Hon Robert Halfon MP

Letter to Jo Johnson MP

Letter to Hon Bernard Jenkin MP

Full report

Annex A – Due Diligence

Annex B – list of documents