Good schools to have more Ofsted inspections to prevent slippage


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Schools ranked as "good" by inspectors are to face more frequent inspections under new proposals to be unveiled by education standards watchdog Ofsted today.

Chief schools inspector Sir Michael Wilshaw has let it be known he is worried that too many schools "slip back" under the current system, in which inspections take place every five years, rather than go on to become outstanding.

He acknowledged Ofsted needs to focus on struggling schools, which require a greater level of scrutiny and intervention.

However, he told head teachers in Norwich that "we need to move to a new inspection model", to keep "a more watchful eye on good schools so they don’t slip back”.

He said he would be suggesting “frequent but shorter inspections of schools”. Ofsted said this would allow a full inspection to be triggered if there were signs of slipping, or indeed if they deserved to be reclassified as "outstanding" due to improvements.

The package will also include plans for more “no notice” inspection of schools - a move which will be bitterly opposed by head teachers.

Russell Hobby, general secretary of the National Association of Head Teachers, warned: “Head teachers have a right and a need to be present during inspection and a small amount of notice is required to make this possible.

“At present the period of notice is only half a day: anything less risks making the inspection invalid.”