Dame Rachel de Souza backs Ofsted inspection critics

Academy chief agrees '100%' with Harris and Outwood Grange leaders that new inspections favour middle-class students

John Roberts

Dame Rachel de Souza, of Inspiration Trust, has added her voice to the criticisms of the new Ofsted inspections

Another high-profile academy leader has added her voice to the criticism that Ofsted’s new inspections favour middle-class students.

Dame Rachel de Souza, the chief executive of Inspiration Trust, said that she "agrees 100 per cent" with recent comments made by the leaders of the Harris Federation and Outwood Grange Academies Trust.

Sir Daniel Moynihan, of Harris Federation, and Martyn Oliver, of Outwood Grange, have warned that Ofsted’s focus on the quality of the curriculum over exam results will not work for disadvantaged pupils.

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They have also voiced concern that schools are being downgraded for choosing to run GCSE courses over three years.

Ofsted inspection changes

Ofsted's new inspection framework, which was introduced in September, places more emphasis on the curriculum and gives less weight to exam and test results.

Sir Daniel has said:  "It is a middle-class [inspection] framework for middle-class kids.”

Commenting on Twitter, Dame Rachel said that she agreed with an article that the two MAT leaders have written for Tes outlining their concerns that the new Ofsted inspection framework would have a negative impact on pupils from disadvantaged areas.

She added: "I also think practically that variability in the quality of inspectors is too great and must be addressed if this complex new framework is to be successfully implemented.”

More to follow.

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John Roberts

John Roberts

John Roberts is North of England reporter for Tes

Find me on Twitter @JohnGRoberts

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