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Ofsted latest: EXACTLY 415 schools and 200 000 pupils....

Discussion in 'Education news' started by BigFrankEM, Jan 8, 2020.

  1. BigFrankEM

    BigFrankEM Established commenter

  2. CheeseMongler

    CheeseMongler Lead commenter

    I didn't get much further than the opening paragraph;
    More than 200,000 pupils in England are being educated in schools that have performed poorly for at least 13 years, despite being inundated with improvement initiatives from central and local government, a report shows.
    Surely that's a typo, although I don't know how you can type "despite" rather than "because of".
    chelsea2, afterdark, WB and 10 others like this.
  3. a1976

    a1976 Established commenter

    Let's see, the Conservatives have been in power since 2010 so it will be kind of hard for the Labour-loving Guardian to pin this on Cameron, May or Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Those overpaid waste of spaces that are called senior management who sit and drink coffee in their office and dream of stupid initiatives wouldn't have anything do with this, now would it. Sack underperforming heads and the problem will be solved.
    Jonntyboy likes this.
  4. Skeoch

    Skeoch Star commenter

  5. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    Complicated problem. It's easy to blame all sorts of people. It's not party political, both shades of recent Government have tried and failed to improve schools.
    I know some schools that have struggled to find "good". The one I know best has been good twice since ofsted started and spent a lot of time as satisfactory or RI. That schools biggest problems were probably lack of student aspiration, rural remoteness making staff recruitment difficult, and reputational difficulties meaning that aspirational parents packing children off to more favoured (and fee paying) schools elsewhere. The management didn't always win my undying love, but they weren't the problem either.
    My view is that when the local economy delivers rewards for working hard and doing well at school, then kids work harder. If you have to leave town to prosper, then the less imaginative kids see no rewards for doing well, because they can't look past the end of the road.
    I am sure that others will find counter examples.
    craig244k, bessiesmith2 and Jonntyboy like this.
  6. Skeoch

    Skeoch Star commenter

    Some of these comments are echoed in the report.
  7. ajrowing

    ajrowing Lead commenter

    It seems that the newspaper article has hidden the answer in it.

    "Most are in deprived and neglected areas of the country including Derby, Southend-on-Sea and Darlington, and are blighted by high levels of pupil mobility, geographical isolation, problems with staff recruitment and poor parental motivation."

    So actually it is nothing to do with the best efforts of the teachers and other staff at these schools, but a collection of factors that are outside the schools control.
    chelsea2, afterdark, Jamvic and 2 others like this.
  8. Jonntyboy

    Jonntyboy Lead commenter

    Absolutely. But as these are social problems, relating to our culture and the environment which has developed over decades and which is difficult to change, it is easier to blame teachers and "the government". Especially if you are left-leaning and the current government is conservative...
    Jamvic likes this.
  9. Grandsire

    Grandsire Star commenter

    Well, this post again raises the question “When is TES going to provide us with a multi-like function?” Cos me putting :D:D:D:D:D doesn’t really do it justice.
    Jamvic and MathMan1 like this.
  10. Skeoch

    Skeoch Star commenter

    If you read the report, Ofsted matched these "stuck" schools with others with similar socioeconomic settings; the matched schools are no longer inadequate / requires improvement. Ofsted in the report seeks to identify why the matched schools had overcome their difficulties and the "stuck" schools had not.
    You may not agree with the methodology or the sample size but you do need to read the report to appreciate its import.
  11. bessiesmith2

    bessiesmith2 New commenter

    And yet one of the 'stuck' schools went through 10 Heads in 14 years but sadly the problem was not solved. As indicated by the article and other posters, the issues are complicated and any knee-jerk, quick-fix solutions are unlikely to work. I think Ofsted might be onto something with the idea of looking longer-term, without judgement and specific, tailored support. If only the good intentions aren't scuppered by political meddling....
    chelsea2 likes this.
  12. ajrowing

    ajrowing Lead commenter

    Because one in the matched pair found a way to change its intake and the other did not?
  13. install

    install Star commenter

    It really means that lazy and coasting Ofsted has failed imho. They knew schools were failing and went again and again and again. All they needed to do was to step in and teach themselves. To show teachers how to teach the unreachable, the absent, the troubled, the newly arrived and the poorly behaved.

    Ofsted need to go. Schools could use the money for support instead. Like some hts it seems, Ofsted keep their distance, grab the money and remain too scared and arrogant to teach. Ofsted are simply paid critics. How many Ofsted inspectors actually live in the deprived, challenging and sometimes deplorable communities where some of these schools are?

    And look at what they did at the other end - the Outstanding schools. They left them not to be inspected again for approx 6yrs and then acted surprised that that those schools changed. A lazy, distant and simply just critical group of inspectors does not do much good imo.
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2020
  14. Drdad

    Drdad New commenter

    After 25+ years in education, I stil have not he faintest clue about what constitutes 'good' or 'outstanding' for OFSTED. Their inspection criteria seem entirely inconsistent, changeable as the wind and, frankly, not worth giving any consideration to. If they want to decide that 200 000 children are in failing schools, that's their business. Doesn't mean anyone else has to listen to the fools.
    install, Jamvic, ajrowing and 2 others like this.
  15. Skeoch

    Skeoch Star commenter

    The points raised by @install aren't very helpful in that they blame Ofsted for things beyond its control. Not inspecting outstanding schools was a political decision, not Ofsted's. Ofsted's remit, again a political decision, doesn't include support, guidance or coaching. Ofsted's statutory task is simply inspection. Ofsted can ask and lobby for that to be changed, but can't make the change itself.
  16. neddyfonk

    neddyfonk Lead commenter

    You cannot make a silk purse from a sows ear - so you need to change the sow into a silk worm or change what you are trying to make/achieve.
    Unless you spend a lot of money improving a whole community/standard of living, pupil achievements on DFE/Ofsted performance criteria will remain poor, even if BSF gave them a spanking new school.
    Easier to change what is being taught, I would go for more breadth, less depth. Dump grammer, Shakespeare, long division and algebra. Spend more time improving vocabulary via debate etc etc. Better social skills may even affect parental 'development'.
    Give all the 'failing' schools a catchy new moniker and proudly declare SATs will not be used to 'measure' performance.
    install likes this.
  17. Skeoch

    Skeoch Star commenter

    See my comment above. Ofsted matched schools and found that in each pair, one school remained in difficulty while the other overcame it. Well worth reading the whole report.
  18. install

    install Star commenter

    Good point. Remember Ofsted's 'satisfactory' grade. And then the confusion over what 'satisfactory' meant.
  19. Jamvic

    Jamvic Star commenter

    Ofsted is urging the government to fund a trial of more extended inspections of some of the schools it has identified. Unlike with current inspections, it does not want to pass judgment but to enable support to improve standards. During the election campaign, the Conservatives pledged to increase Ofsted’s powers

  20. afterdark

    afterdark Lead commenter

    OFSTED is an organisation that is predicated on the assumption of 15000 bad teachers. A mantra that they only abandoned when the media spotlight fell on how few of these bad teachers they had managed to identify over decades.

    OFSTED needs to die. But don't expect an old Etonian to care about state schools. His kids and the kids of his rich chums will all tend to be privately educated and their schools are not subject to OFSTED. They have ISI instead.
    ajrowing likes this.

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