Questions raised over Ofsted’s capacity to routinely inspect outstanding schools

Ofsted does not have the capacity to deliver on the Department for Education’s (DfE) decision to remove the inspection exemption for outstanding schools, it has been claimed. Furthermore, plans to create a new Ofsted judgement for financial management and oversight are “misguided”.

The comments have come from the National Association of Head Teachers (NAHT), which says that removing the exemption is the “right thing to do” but warns that inspection is becoming “an impossible task”.

Currently, outstanding schools are not subject to routine inspection, but instead are regularly risk-assessed. It means that many schools go uninspected for long periods.

The question has come to the fore after the House of Commons Committee of Public Accounts revealed that 1,620 schools had not been inspected for six years or more (as of August 2017).

Furthermore, of 305 outstanding schools that were inspected between September and March this year, only 49 remained outstanding.

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