Watchdog chief in Baby P scandal is paid £230,000

May 30, 2009

The head of Ofsted was paid more than Pfund230,000 in salary and bonuses last year despite admitting failings over the Baby Peter case.

Christine Gilbert earned performance-related pay of Pfund38,000 on top of her salary of Pfund196,000.

Her watchdog was heavily criticised for giving Haringey Council a ‘good’ rating just weeks after Baby Peter died following months of abuse at his home in North London.

Ofsted’s verdict dramatically changed when inspectors were sent in again a year later, at the height of public anxiety over Baby Peter’s death.

Mrs Gilbert admitted the council had been able to ‘hide behind’ data to achieve a favourable rating. The watchdog is now implementing major reforms of the system for inspecting social services.

Mrs Gilbert is among a series of education chiefs whose pay has been disclosed. Many bureaucrats are paid more than Gordon Brown, who collects Pfund190,000.

The TaxPayers’ Alliance has condemned the salaries, claiming public money is being used to reward failure.

Freedom of Information disclosures show the head of the quango responsible for the school rebuilding programme earns Pfund 213,000. Tim Byles was appointed chief executive of Partnerships for Schools in November 2006, and is responsible for overseeing the Building Schools for the Future programme.

A report by auditors earlier this year found the scheme was running two years behind schedule and Pfund10billion over-budget.

Costs were found to have spiralled to Pfund55billion following ‘avoidable delays’ and excessive spending on consultants. Many of the problems pre-date Mr Byles’s arrival, his aides said.

Elsewhere, exam officials who admitted failures during the SATs marking fiasco were paid handsomely, and also received notice pay after quitting over the problems. Dr Ken Boston earned Pfund175,000 to Pfund180,000 basic annual salary plus Pfund154,000 worth of perks, including rent on a home in Chelsea, as head of the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority.

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