Ofsted changes focus

The office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills (Ofsted) announced on the 16thJanuary a radical overhaul of school inspections that could yield more inclusive practices within the education system. They are currently seeking views on proposals for changes to the education inspection framework from 2019. The consultation closes on the 5thApril 2019. Have your say and find out more here.

“We are proposing an evolutionary shift that rebalances inspection to look rather more closely at the substance of education: what is taught and how it is taught, with test and exam outcomes looked at in that context, not in isolation.

Outcomes clearly matter and will of course continue to be considered, in the context of what is being taught. But we all know that too much weight placed on performance measures alone can lead to a degree of distortion, both in what is taught and not taught, and in other aspects of how a provider is managed. We also know that those who come to education with a disadvantage of any kind are more likely to be directly affected when these distortions happen.”

 The change by Ofsted came after concerns from the commons education committee about “off-rolling” – also referred to as backdoor exclusions–of young people across the country. The committee also criticised the government’s focus on school standards had led to practices that have resulted in disadvantaged children being disproportionately excluded.

ACERT welcomes Ofsted changes as we know Gypsy Roma and Traveller pupils are disproportionately impacted by poor practices such as these. We hope this shift will encourage schools to focus more on the quality of education received by children rather than the outcome they will be held accountable to fostering more inclusive practices.