Pupils get their say on life in class

23rd September 2005 at 01:00
Tens of thousands of pupils will be invited to tell inspectors whether "nicer or more helpful teachers" would make them feel happier or safer at school.

Children as young as 10 will be asked how to improve their school and if they think enough is being done to tackle bullies.

Ofsted will ask pupils how well they are doing, if lessons are interesting and how much say they have in the running of their school.

Mick Brookes, general secretary of the National Association of Head Teachers, said: "This is an extremely dangerous area. We need to be very careful that young people don't get the message that it is OK to use this to undermine their schools."

The survey of 600 pupils in each of England's 150 local authorities is part of Ofsted's drive to make young people's views central to new integrated inspections of children's services.

Inspectors will also hold focus groups with children and interview them as part of studies of individual neighbourhoods.

Schools selected at random by Ofsted will be asked in turn to randomly-select about 30 pupils in each of Years 6, 8 and 10 to fill in an online questionnaire.

Pupils will be asked if they do enough sport and exercise at school, if the school should be stricter with bullies and to rate how much the school consults them on a scale of 1-10.

An Ofsted spokeswoman said the questionnaire would not directly affect inspectors' findings but be used to guide inspection and identify areas for scrutiny.


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