Inspectors’ exam hit by technical problem

The College of Policing suspended yesterday’s online inspectors’ exam due to technical difficulties.

In a statement issued late yesterday, John Apter, the national chair of the Police Federation, said the college’s decision was ‘simply unacceptable’.

“Many of our colleagues have been studying for the inspectors’ exam which was held today. The news that a technical problem has prevented many from completing the examination is deeply concerning,” he explained.

“I have had several conversations with the CEO of the college, Mike Cunningham. He is under no illusion as to how much anger and damage this has caused.

“I know the immense frustration and anger our members will be feeling. Exams are by their nature stressful and involve a lot of preparation, so to see that go to waste is simply unacceptable.”

He continued: “I want to reassure members I have heard directly from the officers affected and their frustration, disappointment and anger is loud and clear. I can assure you the Federation will be raising questions at the highest levels and holding the College of Policing to account.

“Some teething trouble is inevitable when new systems are introduced, but our members have a right to expect that all of the appropriate testing and evaluation would have been done before they came to sit their exams. Quite simply this is not good enough.”

DCC Bernie O’Reilly from the College of Policing acknowledged in a statement that candidates had put in an extraordinary amount of work preparing for the exam, sacrificing their time during an already challenging and demanding time for policing. 

He said: “We apologise for the stress and anxiety caused by this delay and we will work hard to make sure that those who have been unable to sit the exam without disruption are able to do so fairly as soon as possible. 

“We will ensure all candidates are provided with further information specific to their experience today and we will be exploring other support in respect of the wider impact on candidates' personal circumstances.”

Federation National Board members Gemma Fox and Dave Bamber lead on work with the College of Policing and will be seeking to ensure no officers are disadvantaged or treated unfairly as a result of the incident.

Read the College of Policing statement.