Workload fears for new SFA boss

Concern has been raised about the workload of Education Funding Agency (SFA) chief executive Peter Lauener after the same role at the Skills Funding Agency (SFA) was added to his remit.

Mr Lauener took up the additional role on Monday (November 3) and Shadow Education Secretary Tristram Hunt told FE Week sister newspaper Academies Week: “The National Audit Office (NAO) has warned about the EFA becoming overloaded — yet ministers respond by appointing its chief executive as the joint chief executive of the SFA as well as the EFA.”

The EFA employs around 950 staff and manages £54bn of funding a year to support state-provided education for 8m children aged three to 16, and 1.6m 16 to 19-year-olds. Meanwhile, the SFA employs around 925 staff and contracts with more than 1,000 colleges, private training organisations and employers, with more than £4bn of funding each year.

The SFA job was advertised with a salary of £142,000, but Mr Lauener, who earns up to £145,000 with the EFA, will not receive a pay rise for his new role, said a government spokesperson.

A spokesperson for the Department for Education, which oversees the EFA, said: “Peter has a strong team of directors who take day-to-day responsibility of the EFA’s functions.” The SFA declined to comment.