Got the Ofsted Jeebies!
I have been teaching at this school for just four weeks, and overheard today in the staffroom that they reckon we’re due an Ofsted visit this term. Help!
No need to panic, you can leave that to the headteacher and deputy heads, as panics about Ofsted is part of their role!
In fact, you can leave most things to them, because they should be up to date with all the requirements and have everything ready for when the inspectors visit.
As for what you personally can do, you can approach your head of department or key stage coordinator for guidance here. Ask for a checklist of what you should ensure that you have ready in case they do come.
There are, of course, obvious things for you to be working on.
- Child Protection and Safeguarding – do re-read the school’s policy, and not just for the inspection; you need it as part of your day-to-day awareness in the school.
- Your marking. Is it all up to date? Are you following the school’s assessment policy, especially for Assessment for Learning? Do you know how assessment should be informing your planning?
- Are all statutory requirements being followed – are you recording attendance and absences properly?
After a month at the school, even without Ofsted hanging over your head like the Sword of Damocles, it’s a good moment to pause, take stock, see how you are getting on.
You might like to go on to the resources section on TES, where you will find some useful support material.
There’s a super wallchart called A handy guide to what Ofsted wants to see, by the poster blackfriary. This poster has also posted another very helpful resource: Planning and teaching the perfect Ofsted lesson, and another one called The perfect lesson plan
But don’t make the mistake of thinking that lessons for Ofsted are special lessons. They are the lessons that promote learning and progress for every pupil, and this is what we aim to achieve every single day, whether or not the inspector is in the back of the class.
It’s just a bit more scary if he is, that’s all!
But if you are newly appointed, then you have an advantage over your colleagues, as you have been through the Scary-Being-Observed more recently than them, and very successfully too. So don’t be too unnerved at the thought of Ofsted coming in, just make sure that you are following all the school’s policies and are doing your best to ensure learning and progress.
And when the inspectors have gone, you’ll have a lovely relaxing weekend!