Ofsted's 'unsupportive' agenda provokes nationwide fire

11th December 2009 at 00:00

I usually enjoy Mike Kent's column and find it humorous as well as informative. However, last week I was surprised to see him claim there are Ofsted inspectors who do not have relevant experience of the sector they are inspecting. I find this hard to accept.

I have been an inspector for the learning and skills sector for post-16 education and training with the Adult Learning Inspectorate, which was subsumed into Ofsted in March 2007. With both organisations I had to go through a very rigorous recruitment, selection and assessment process lasting two days to be approved as an inspector.

I have had to provide detailed information about my past as well as my current experience as a practitioner in the areas I wish to inspect. I also have to periodically provide further information about my CPD to maintain my practitioner status.

Over and above this I have to undertake additional mandatory training with Ofsted to keep updated in particular areas of focus for inspection. For example, I had to undertake training in safeguarding, equality and diversity, protecting information and community cohesion in September to stay on the approved register.

The majority of organisations I have encountered find the inspection process very objective and open, and that it gives them clear indications of what they do well and the areas for improvement.

Sunita Grigg, Education, management and training consultant, React Business Solutions, St Nicolas Park, Nuneaton.

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