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Spielman: Ofsted plan to give schools 150 mins notice could be dropped

Chief inspector says plan for lead inspector to arrive at schools day before inspection is genuine attempt to make process less data driven

Amanda Spielman appeared before MPs

Chief inspector says plan for lead inspector to arrive at schools day before inspection is genuine attempt to make process less data driven

Amanda Spielman has said Ofsted will drop plans which could see inspectors to arrive at schools with just 150 minutes notice for on site preparations, if it  “creates more problems than it solves.”

The chief inspector said today that it was being proposed as  a “genuine effort” to make inspection less data driven but revealed that the plan could be dropped as a result of consultation.

Ofsted have insisted that on site preparation will give schools the chance to shape the inspection which starts the next day. 

But Nick Brook, deputy general secretary of the National Association of Head Teachers warned that heads would “absolutely not” accept Ofsted’s description of an on-site meeting with an inspector as being preparation.

“For schools it will mark the start of the inspection process and be seen as a move towards no notice,” he added.

Ms Spielman said: “It’s something that has been very popular in our pilot inspections. It is in response to feedback is that inspection has become too data driven but if that is all you have to plan on then it is inevitably data driven.

"This is a genuine effort to have just the lead inspector to come along and have conversation that lets the provider talk about the things that they think should be the focus, what the strengths are and to talk about what’s happening that wouldn’t necessarily be reflected in the data.

"If this works then great but if it creates more problems than it solves then we won’t pursue it but it is a genuine attempt to address something that a lot of people had flagged as being a concern - that inspection had become too data driven."

Ms Spielman launched the consultation for Ofsted’s new inspection framework today at the Sixth Form College Association’s Winter Conference in London

The schools sector will be asked their views on a number of proposed changes including:

·       a new ‘quality of education’ judgement, focused on curriculum to replace teaching and learning and outcomes judgement.

·       no longer using schools’ internal performance data as inspection evidence - in a bid to cutdown on teacher workload

·       separate judgements about learners’ ‘personal development’ and ‘behaviour and attitudes’

·       extending short inspections of good schools to two days, to ensure inspectors have sufficient evidence that a school remains good

·       Arriving at a morning's notice for on site preparation in the afternoon before an inspection starts.

Ms Spielman said : “The new quality of education judgement will look at how providers are deciding what to teach and why, how well they are doing it and whether it is leading to strong outcomes for young people.

"This will reward those who are ambitious and make sure that young people accumulate rich, well-connected knowledge and develop strong skills using this knowledge.

“This is all about raising true standards. Nothing is more pernicious to these than a culture of curriculum narrowing and teaching to the test.”

She will add: “Two words sum up my ambition for the framework: substance and integrity.

“The substance that has all children and young people exposed to the best that has been thought and said, achieve highly and set up to succeed.

“And the integrity that makes sure every child and young person is treated as an individual with potential to be unlocked, and staff as experts in their subject or field, not just as data gatherers and process managers. And above all that you are rewarded for doing the right thing."

 

 

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