Ofsted – requiring improvement

requires improvementI was around when Ofsted was invented.  As part of the training, we had a presentation from a head who had undergone a trial Ofsted. ‘Trial’ was an accurate description of his experience.    It sounded terrible.  ‘Do I really want to be part of this?’ I asked myself.  In the end, I decided perhaps I might manage it with some humanity and compassion – which seemed to be missing from the account we heard. In those days schools got months of notice, which led to considerable energy being expended to get all their paperwork in order – and led to a wonderful comment by a headteacher prepared to take control of the situation: ‘We will put on our best coat for Ofsted; we are not buying a new one’. It may sound like a cliche, but it really was a huge privilege to be allowed into schools and celebrate the good work that was going on – and highlight where it wasn’t.  I worked with some dedicated colleagues who were determined to do their best for the school.

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