Wright fast-tracked to lead DfES comms team

The Department for Education and Skills (DfES) has unveiled Caroline Wright as its director of comms.

She has been comms chief at the department's Partnership for Schools renovation scheme for just three months.

At the DfES, Wright will oversee 250 people handling press, internal comms, publications, public inquiries, marketing and campaigns.
She will spearhead comms around the controversial introduction of school trusts. Other hot topics include school admissions and inspections, and student financial support schemes.

'The Government's commitment to the education and care agenda means that education is always headline news,' she said.

Wright replaces Michael Stevenson, who vacated the role five months ago to become the department's director of IT (PRWeek, 7 October 2005). Stevenson, who still acts as director of comms, will step down on Wright's arrival, a date for which has not yet been set.

During his time in the role Stevenson created a central strategic team to oversee the comms division's specialist desks. However, it is understood that the DfES is planning to scrap the team and return to its former, devolved format.

Stevenson's system is thought to have frustrated PROs on the specialist desks, although the DfES refused to comment on this.

The DfES PR roster comprises August.One Communications, Fishburn Hedges, The Forster Company, Geronimo Communications, Harrison Cowley, Hill & Knowlton, Porter Novelli and Trimedia Communications.

Wright was the first comms director of Partnership for Schools, which is funded by the DfES but functions as a non-departmental body.
It is now on the hunt for her replacement.

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