Civil servants accused Education Secretary Michael Gove of running his department like a "nightmarish right-wing experiment" today after he announced plans to slash up to 1,000 jobs.
The job losses, announced as part of a £290 million efficiency drive, amount to a quarter of the total staff at the Department for Education (DfE) in England.
The cuts will mainly hit human resources, finance and computing and will force offices to merge, the government said.
The review report found that decision-making at the department was often "slow and laborious" with "unclear roles and processes" and claimed that planned new ways of working would "remove the barriers which sap energy and prevent people being as effective as they can be."
A spokesman said: "We conducted a review to make sure we have the capability to deliver well-designed policies that have a real, measurable impact on the children and young people who need it most, while minimising costs to the taxpayer.
"The review found that the DfE has committed and hard-working staff producing high-quality work, but that the department can and should work more effectively and efficiently.
"Over the coming months we will target our staff time and money on only our top priorities, cutting red tape and concentrating on the work that adds the most value.
"We are reducing the size of our backroom staff, such as HR, finance and IT, and merging offices to reduce the cost of our buildings.
"The DfE had already committed to reducing its administrative budget in real terms by 42 per cent from 2010/11 to 2014/15.
"Following the review, our target is a 50 per cent reduction to £290 million by 2015/16 and we have already achieved over half of these savings."
But the review, ordered by Mr Gove who has already entered into a bloody feud with teachers over examinations, academies and pensions, sparked fury from the Public and Commercial Services union (PCS).
PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka accused the Education Secretary of "playing politics with people's livelihoods and putting at risk the very important services DfE civil servants provide to teachers and the public."
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