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Education Funding Agency – fit for purpose?

29 January 2014

A NAO report into the EFA has given a marginally positive assessment of the agency’s work so far but has highlighted key concerns around its fitness for purpose in a changing education landscape.

The NAO highlights that the EFA continues to improve its operations in funding an increasing number of autonomous educational institutions and its role is valued by those institutions.

However the level of customer service presents an issue and the NAO suggests a business plan and operating model is required to ensure its growing responsibilities and expansion of the academy programme to over 7000 by 2015/16 does not lead to it being overburdened and unable to function effectively. That would cause significant problems given it manages £51billion of funding.

Doubling the number of academies will put extra pressure on the EFA and given the reduction in local authority support, it is likely the EFA will become first port of call for advice and as such the need to improve its customer service must be given top priority.

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