Watching the watchmen: Is Ofsted fit for purpose?


You may remember a blog I posted back in December: Get ahead of the curve: stop grading lessons written after being invited to chat to Jonathan Simons and Harriet Waldegrave, the authors of Policy Exchange’s new report on Ofsted’s fitness for purpose: Who Watches the Watchmen?

Well, today the report finally sees the light of day. It asks some big questions, and makes some bold recommendations on the future of school inspections, concluding that although we need an independent inspectorate, “significant changes ought to be made to the way in which Ofsted conducts school inspections to make it as effective as it should be and that it needs to be”. To this end, it makes the following headline recommendations:

  1. The “total abolition of routine lesson observations” by Ofsted in the course of their inspections
  2. The abolition (or at least drastic reduction) of Additional Inspectors for future school inspections
  3. A 2 step model of school inspections that would, in the first instance be data driven and only involve a single inspector for a single day
  4. Schools will only be rated as ‘outstanding’ if they are engaged in some form of “serious and meaningful” school to school improvement.

Read more on The Learning Spy…

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