Shouldn't inspectors look at the care and wellbeing of pupils?

20th April 2007 at 01:00
Q It seems as if the whole focus of inspection is on Sats and exam results.

Shouldn't inspectors look at the care and wellbeing of pupils, and give this equal weight to the data analysis?

A I have to take issue with the suggestion that inspectors give insufficient weight to pupils' wellbeing. The inspection framework is based firmly on the Every Child Matters agenda. All inspectors are required to focus on all aspects of it, including reporting on pupils' personal development and wellbeing. There are more inspection judgments made under this heading than any other - including achievement and standards. Personal development is itself an achievement grade; like achievement and standards, it is an important "outcome" measure of the school's success. I am not an uncritical advocate of the inspection system, but I don't think you can fairly criticise inspection for not giving enough weight to pupils'

wellbeing. It is, however, also part of that wellbeing that pupils are helped to do as well as they can academically. We shortchange schools and their pupils when we look on achievement and wellbeing as "eitheror"


Selwyn Ward draws on years of inspection experience. The views expressed here are his own. To ask him a question contact him at regularly answers your Ofsted questions on our forums at

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