Exam chief to quit after inquiry into AS-level 'shambles'

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The Independent Online

The Government's most senior exams adviser shocked the education world yesterday by announcing he was stepping down after only a year in the job.

David Hargreaves, 62, chief executive of the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority, said he was retiring to allow a "younger person to take over the challenge". Professor Hargreaves, who was appointed in September on a three-year contract, said he would leave at the end of the year, as soon as he had completed the AS-levels review. He steered through the AS-level exams butthen received complaints that the new system was a "shambles". Senior education figures said the controversy left himexhausted. He had complained recently about the relentless workload.

Estelle Morris, the Secretary of State for Education and Skills, said he had made a "significant contribution" towards raising school standards.

John Dunford, general secretary of the Secondary Heads Association, said: "I am extremely disappointed. I think that [he] has shed more light on the curriculum than we have seen in a long time."