The recent announcement by David Bell, chief inspector of schools, reported in The TES (July 8), that Ofsted will use the same criteria when inspecting lessons undertaken by teaching assistants that they use when judging teachers' lessons, poses an interesting challenge.
If, in any school, TA lessons are found to be of low quality, this can lead to a school being placed in special measures. However, if, nationally, TA lessons are found to be generally satisfactory or better, the question must arise why expensive teachers should be used when relatively cheap, unqualified TAs can do the job just as well. Is there a hidden agenda here?
I think that when Ofsted inspects my school, there will be no TA lessons for them to observe!
Richard Greenfield Headteacher St Edmund's school Hertford Road London N9