'Championing the rights of children'

Ofsted warning over 'acceptance of mediocrity' in schools

Garry Thu 09 Oct 2014 09:31

Sir Michael Wilshaw, the head of Ofsted, is to announce an overhaul of the inspection process in England to prevent good schools 'slipping back' into bad habits.

Good schools will be subjected to regular light-touch inspections under Ofsted plans to prevent a culture of “mediocrity” creeping back into the state education system.

The education watchdog will announce on Thursday that more than half of state schools will be given a brief “health check” every two or three years.

The move is expected to replace the existing system in which good schools – six-in-10 of those in England – are left without a full inspection for around five years.

Under the changes, new-style checks will be data driven and involve discussions with head teachers – rather than vetting individual lessons.

Good schools will only be given a full inspection if the health check uncovers major problems, it will be revealed.

Speaking before the announcement, Sir Michael Wilshaw, the chief inspector, said the reforms were designed to keep a “watchful eye” on these schools to ensure they do not "slip back into an acceptance of mediocrity”.

He said that primary schools had seen results increase quickly over the last few years but there were “worrying signs” that standards in secondary education were “stagnating”.

It represents the latest in a series of changes to the inspection system under Sir Michael.

This includes subjecting schools to snap inspections to clamp down on bad behaviour, re-labelling “satisfactory” schools as “requires improvement” and directly vetting council education services for the first time.

Read more... (Daily Telegraph - 08 October)