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Amanda, take a trip to the outskirts – it’s educational

Many schools in disadvantaged areas on the outskirts of towns and cities are succeeding against the odds – and Ofsted needs to learn the secrets of their success

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A Suggestion for Amanda Spielman our new HMCI: but first, some background.

It was 8.20 on a cold January morning on a post-war housing estate, showing its age, with narrow potholed roads and boarded-up shops. I was waiting along with a gaggle of parents for the primary school gate to open. Some of the parents were what heads in similar circumstances call “Kidults” – young mothers who became pregnant for the first time in their mid-teens. Their conversations suggested that they were finding it hard to be what Bruno Bettelheim once unforgettably called a “Good Enough Parent”.

There was another ...

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