This forum has often been the host to some passionate views on Ofsted, often backed up with stories which sometimes indicate an injustice in the judgment that was made, or more often reveal the emotional damage that the process has caused to individuals. This last point is not to be underestimated. Most teachers who enter the profession are sentient, conscientious individuals, and the blunt, impersonal, judgmental manner of inspections can leave a lasting scar on one's professional outlook. Now that Christine Gilbert is stepping down from the HMCI role we can expect changes - hopefully improvements - to the inspection process. It isn't realistic to suggest that schools shouldn't be inspected. As long as they use public money they will remain accountable for how this money is used. Even though it is implied that the new academies won't be inspected, it just means that, as for other schools judged as outstanding, that inspections will be less frequent, and backed up by monitoring and watching the data on the school. We know that the new government's intention is to slim the inspection process to looking at standards. The other areas are more about compliance, and there are less intrusive ways to monitor these. What the profession says about this is important because even these forums are read by minister's research assistants and our voice can make a differnce. I would welcome a greater emphasis at looking at teaching and its impact. Currently headteachers are expected to be able to rate every teacher's teaching, but we know that this is slightly hit and miss in many schools. There should be more emphasis at looking at the impact of teaching over time. Spot observations should count as exemplication rather than use one lesson to judge the whole of a teacher's professional worth. To achieve this, schools need to be encouraged to do more systematic joint observations to a standard set of criteria. Schools should be encouraged to undertake self-evaluation in place of inspections and to publish their findings annually. To do this there needs to be clear responsibilities on the SLT and at subject leadership level. One member of SLT ought to be Ofsted trained and middle manager's job specs should include the monitoring of standards and teaching in their area. Schools that can demonstrate that they are in control of their own standards need not be inspected. All that is needed is to verify their findings. If this was to happen then schools would have little fear of Ofsted. I am sure that a move in this direction would be welcomed by most schools.