Letter: Inspecting Ofsted

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The Independent Online
Letter: Inspecting Ofsted

Sir: Ofsted's methodology needs constant assessment if it is to help in the continual raising of school standards. But surely there is an easy explanation for the fact that standards in uninspected schools are rising faster than those which have been inspected (report, 6 May)? Doesn't one tend to work harder in the period before an inspection than after one - especially if one knows that the next one is not due for four or five years?

The only astonishing thing about these statistics is that no one from Ofsted chose to present this interpretation as support for the system of inspections. And all the more surprising since, when I put the facts to a group of 12-year-olds, they offered this explanation within 30 seconds.