Ofsted review to investigate narrowing of the curriculum

Unveiling the first major investigation of her tenure, chief inspector Amanda Spielman warns of a ‘corrosive pattern’ of behaviour due to the conflict between league tables and the curriculum. Dorothy Lepkowska reports

Ofsted is to launch a major investigation into the curriculum amid concerns that some schools are excluding weaker pupils from entries in some subjects in order to boost league table performance.

Amanda Spielman, the chief inspector of schools, told delegates attending the Association of Schools and College Leaders’ (ASCL) national conference in Birmingham, that she understood the “conflict” schools faced over providing a broad and balanced curriculum and maintaining their league table position – and that this was putting pressure on heads and teachers.

She said: “Vitally important though a school’s examination results are, we must not allow curricula to be driven just by SATs, GCSEs and A levels. It is the substance of education that ultimately creates and changes life chances, not grade stickers from exams.

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