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Toby Young’s appointment to the OfS shows everything wrong with our attitude towards universities

As the government pushes to marketise universities, it seems everyone's opinion is valued—except those with actual expertise

By Charlotte Lydia Riley  

File photo dated 22/06/16 of Free school pioneer and writer Toby Young, who along with Ruth Carlson, a civil engineering student at Surrey University and Elizabeth Fagan, the senior vice president and managing director of Boots, has been appointed to the board of the new higher education watchdog.

At one minute past midnight on New Year’s Day, the Guardian published a story listing the final six members of the Office for Students (OfS), the government’s new regulator for English universities.

Academics across Britain—party poppers still in hand, glass of fizz not yet flat, still hoarse from singing “Auld Lang Syne”—were brought down from their holiday spirit with a bump as they read that members would include a former executive of HSBC,…

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