Ofsted changes to education inspection

Sir Michael Wilshaw, Ofsted’s chief inspector, today set out the biggest changes to education inspection in this country in more than 20 years.

Under the plans, schools currently rated good by Ofsted will be subjected to short, one-day inspections, led by an HMI (senior inspector), every three years.

Sir Michael also gave some examples of the kinds of questions the HMI will ask. And according to the former academy headteacher, they are the type of questions every school leader should expect.

They are:

  1. “Have the leaders got a grip on the institution? Do they fully understand its strengths and weaknesses?”
  2. “Have they communicated their strategy for raising standards to the key stakeholders?”
  3. “Are they focused on what really benefits children and young people, rather than wasting their time endlessly preparing for an Ofsted inspection which could be years away?”
  4. “Do they refuse to accept excuses for underachievement and are they prepared to go the extra mile to compensate for family background?”
  5. “Are they simply presiders over the status quo, content to take the path of least resistance, or are they prepared to challenge staff and students to do better?”
  6. “Have they built, or are they developing, a culture that is calm, orderly and aspirational?”
  7. “Are they, for example, people who tolerate scrappy worksheets? Or are they people who insist that children should have good materials to work with, including textbooks, readers and library books which they can use for classwork and homework?”