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Inspect the inspectors? Challenge accepted

As national director of schools for Ofsted, Michael Cladingbowl would say that schools don't have a problem with Ofsted, wouldn't he? ("Inspectors are not the enemy", Letters, 1 March.) I wish he had spoken to the chair of governors who wrote to me yesterday, describing how the staff at his successful primary have just been devastated by an aggressive inspection team.

I wouldn't want to question Mr Cladingbowl's personal experiences, but his suggestion that inspections are not data-led is astonishing. Show me a headteacher who believes that. And I'm sorry to hear that he thinks I made up the story about the teacher who couldn't be graded outstanding because her pupils' behaviour was too good. I'll happily put him in touch with her.

I would certainly like to accept his offer of coming out on an inspection, but the rules must be fair. If he supplies me with a list of primary schools in London and their coming inspection dates, I will pick one, but not tell him which. Then, with the agreement of the head, I will follow the inspectors and write an honest and fair appraisal of the inspection process for TES.

Over to you, Michael...

Mike Kent, Retired primary school headteacher.

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