Schools curriculum advisor Nick Tate is to be chief executive of the new qualifications authority, it was confirmed this week.
The Qualifications and National Curriculum Authority will replace the School Curriculum and Assessment Authority, and the National Council for Vocational Qualifications, following the recommendations of Sir Ron Dearing in his review of qualifications for 16 to 19-year-olds.
Key among Dr Tate's priorities, he confirmed, will be to establish a transparent national framework for all qualifications and to "set up a sharper and more rigorous" regime. Quanca was "already gearing up for a forthcoming revision of the national curriculum".
Dr Tate, who will leave his chief executive post at SCAA immediately, offered no reassurances to vice chancellors worried that Quanca's remit over higher level vocational qualifications will challenge their autonomy. But he said that "the input of higher education to our work will be vital".
Subject to legislation, Quanca will begin work in October 1997.