Reducing regulatory burden: the Ofqual handbook and more
Ofqual announces package of measures to reduce regulatory burden, including a new online handbook.
Today (19 September 2017) Ofqual is announcing a package of measures that support our commitment to reduce unnecessary regulatory burden.
In October, we will be launching a preview version of the Ofqual handbook – a new, online resource that brings together all our general rules and guidance, making them easier to use and understand.
We are also confirming several changes to our wider regulatory framework, removing some unnecessary rules and updating others.
The Ofqual handbook
We have designed the handbook to replace 6 existing documents. It will provide:
• simpler, at-a-glance, navigation – related requirements and guidance are grouped together, with no need to navigate between different documents
• enhanced interactivity – including hyperlinked cross-references and tooltips on defined terms
• better accessibility – built using GOV.UK, the handbook complies with a wide range of accessibility standards, and is compatible with assistive software such as screen readers, speech recognition and magnifiers
The handbook will be available alongside the existing documents during a test period (which runs until the end of the year). We will be seeking feedback on the handbook before taking a final decision on rollout in early 2018. We will be previewing the Ofqual handbook in a live webinar on 5 October. We will also be holding face-to-face workshops on 24 October, 27 October and 7 November, for those who are interested to learn more about it and provide feedback.
Reviewing our regulatory framework
Today, we are confirming a number of changes that remove redundant rules.
1. In line with our earlier announcement, we have withdrawn our ‘Criteria for Key Skills Qualifications’.
2. We have also withdrawn our legacy subject criteria for the GCSEs, AS and A levels that were reformed for first teaching in September 2015. Students can no longer take these qualifications, so we no longer need these rules. Our rules covering reviews and appeals in these qualifications remain in force.
3. We have published new versions of our qualification-level ‘Conditions for reformed and legacy GCSEs, AS and A levels’. These new versions simplify our rules by removing transitional arrangements that are no longer in force.
We have also published a new version of our ‘Specifications in relation to the reasonable adjustment of general qualifications’. This updates the document to reflect changes made by the ‘Equality Act 2010 (General Qualifications Bodies) (Appropriate Regulator and Relevant Qualifications) (Amendment) (England) Regulations 2017’.