What the OECD said about England

23rd May 2008 at 01:00
Ofsted - Problem: Preparing for regular inspections means a lot of additional work and creates considerable strain for heads and staff

Ofsted

Problem: Preparing for regular inspections means a lot of additional work and creates considerable strain for heads and staff.

Solution: Place greater emphasis on systematic self-evaluation and less on external Ofsted evaluation, and continue to refine the targeting of external evaluations.

League tables

Problem: The consequences for the individual school, as well as for the individual pupil, are often negative, and it is clear that the construction of the tables favours schools that are already advantaged.

Solution: A new focus on mutual responsibility and collaboration among schools would change the educational landscape to make "every school a great school".

Government initiatives

Problem: Their sheer number and the speed at which schools are expected to implement them may be counterproductive. It overwhelms schools and distracts them from their core mission.

Solution: There should be limits on any new initiatives that increase the overload and fragmentation for school leaders and communities.

Governing bodies

Problem: They are of uneven capacity and appear to have a mixed record of success in supporting school improvement.

Solution: Training, capacity-building and networking would improve their ability to meet national policy goals as well as local priorities.

Workload

Problem: Heads generally work long hours and have difficulty in achieving an appropriate work-life balance, which many feel is inextricably linked to the increasing number and complexity of tasks.

Solution: Distributing leadership reduces their burden and fosters leadership capacity, succession planning and management throughout schools.

www.oecd.orgeduschoolleadership.

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