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Will Ofsted’s focus on exercise book do more harm than good?

Discussion in 'Education news' started by TES_Rosaline, Jun 28, 2019.

  1. Sisyphus_rolls_again

    Sisyphus_rolls_again Established commenter

    We were OFSTEDed last week.
    They took in a wide selection of books and examined them in a room put aside for the purpose.
    No 'used to' about it.
    Jamvic, agathamorse and Piscean1 like this.
  2. Scintillant

    Scintillant Star commenter

    This might be of some use from Jack Marwood

    In May 2011, Ofsted published a document called Making marking matter: St Marylebone Church of England School which codified Ofsted’s approval of a marking policy which “set the gold standard for the common features of effective diagnostic marking” and required that, “one piece of assessed work would be diagnostically marked and moderated in each unit”. In practice, this amounted to one piece of work every six weeks, “with pupils’ work marked in “green (positive) and pink (negative)” so that ‘”students had a clear understanding of how they could improve their work.”


    Over the last 15 years at least, Ofsted have been an utter shambles, constantly trying to give their judgements a thin veneer of rigour and objectivity. At almost every turn they have been shown to be unscientific ******.

    Things have changed but there has been no real admission of errors, nor any apology, nor more importantly, an expression of regret for the damage done to schools and lives as a result. And now they seem to be simply pushing the govt's preferred model of everything, from zero tolerance (despite the evidence), to how to teach, to ignoring off-rolling and looking favourably on academisation and MATs, despite the evidence.

  3. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    Thanks @Scintillant, very interesting as I know that school well - my daughter went there, although I don't remember her books being marked that way!

    The actual document referred to is here, the quotes in the extract on the NUT site are comments from the Head of MFL about how they used the policy in MFL. Is what is described in this "Triple Marking"?
    agathamorse likes this.
  4. powerpointdave

    powerpointdave New commenter

    We had OFSTED last July. They didn’t focus on marking and asked us to talk through a sample of pupils books - RE, science & topic. They spoke with maths & English leads to go through those books. We were able to show and explain rather than inspectors review the books without our input.
  5. Happygopolitely

    Happygopolitely Established commenter

    It was an exemplar Ofsted Report which praised an Outstanding school for its triple marking. Not on their website anymore.

    Ofsted repeatedly deny many things - only to have done them in the past.
    snowyhead and agathamorse like this.
  6. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    If you say so.
  7. Happygopolitely

    Happygopolitely Established commenter

    Ar - you don't do the history of Ofsted then. If I recall you didn't remember the days of Ofsted grading teachers either .. Oh to be young, naive and ignorant until Ofsted change their tune again.
  8. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    You are confusing me with someone else :)
  9. yodaami2

    yodaami2 Lead commenter

  10. Happygopolitely

    Happygopolitely Established commenter

    Oh - so do you remember the brown envelopes handed to teachers by Ofsted with the teacher grades in ?
    Jamvic and bevdex like this.
  11. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    You are still confusing me with someone else :)
  12. Happygopolitely

    Happygopolitely Established commenter

    If you say so. So do you recall the brown envelopes with teacher gradings on or not?
  13. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    I don't know why you keep asking me about brown envelopes. I have no opinions about brown envelopes, no interest in the them, and I've never posted about them. I suggest you re-address your question to whoever it is you think does have an interest.
  14. Happygopolitely

    Happygopolitely Established commenter

    If you say so and I will take that as a 'no'..Thankyou. The real point being Ofsted do one thing and change their mind the next. You will not find all the history of Ofsted wishes on their current website - and just as they used to grade teachers, they used to show triple marking as exemplars of Outstanding practice.
    Jamvic and agathamorse like this.
  15. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    You can take it how you like but it isn't what I said.

    I'm not going to reply to any more of your questions about brown envelopes and teachers. As I said, I have no opinion or interest in the matter. Any conclusions you choose to draw from me ignoring your brown envelope questions in future are entirely your own invention, not my opinions.

    Once again, re-address your questions to whoever it is you think is interested or has posted about it - it wasn't me.
  16. Happygopolitely

    Happygopolitely Established commenter

    Absolutely fine with me. Thankyou.

    It is clear then. Historically what Ofsted say and show as exemplars isn't necessarily on their website now. That includes praising triple marking, having teacher grading and doubtless other things some would have us believe never existed.
  17. drek

    drek Star commenter

    In 2014 Wiltshaw described the complaints about ofsted’s demands on teachers via the new SLT policies as a ‘red herring’.
    Shortly after that Headteachers complained they could not get specialist teachers, particularly in schools that used PM indiscriminately to get rid of long serving staff and increase workload, because they correctly surmised that new joiners would work any amount of hours in their first few years on the promise of quick promotions and less teaching hours, running lots of superficial CPD sessions where they repeatedly go through the ABCs of teaching using samples of their work or what the ‘survey’ tells us.
    The way that OFSTED and SLT write their reports shows a marked ignorance of even the basics of our education system.
    I don’t see the other regulatory bodies going into businesses and demanding all sorts of changes on the shop floor based on dodgy government funded research so that the business has to ask its workforce to increase their hours of work ad hoc, and record evidence they are doing their job on top of each job they do..... all for no extra pay......
    Someone says I want to see all children having the same blah blah blah in their books.
    Or I want to see all teachers doing exactly the same thing..........
    These someones are usually people who spends 80 percent of their time at school in meetings or things other than actual teaching and fail to notice that a child might have 200 or so hours of one subject a year compared to 38 hours a year in a different subject. Each subject demands different skills so why on earth should they see the ‘same’ of anything.
    The amounts of work and the type of work are different.......? Leave it to the professionals still doing the actual teaching?
    The person who has to action all these demands will be spending 90% or more of their time in school teaching large groups of 30 or more students with a huge range of special education needs and behaviour issues.
    No one comes to support the high level disruptees over the 800 hours of teaching such groups.
    Instead they will have one ineffectual member of SLT at a time, pop round the entire school. What on earth that achieves is beyond me. The increasing amount of lates know exactly how to avoid them.......
    But the demands to see this that and the other for example...narrow our focus to what a book should look like....which we have to work another 800 hours or more to receive ‘CPD’ and then produce?
    Wow that is like a never ending landfill of rubbish.
    This is just one of the imbalances in the system that causes stress and anxiety.
    There is not a single term where we can look ahead with confidence and say this and this will be happening next week because one of the demanding leadership variety will send a last minute email drastically changing procedures and deadlines for several things all at the same time, so that everyone heads off exhausted and ill on their half term probably with a mounting to do list to return to.
    On top of that teachers have to work out who overrides who when it comes to conflicting orders about procedures.
  18. hhhh

    hhhh Lead commenter

    As an oldie-I worked when teaching was an enjoyable, respected job-and I've just gone back to it recently...I can see both sides. Yes, it's much harder nowadays; we had experienced, supportive senior staff who actually helped us, and we were allowed to get on with it and find out how to teach well in ways that suited us, not some non-teaching box-ticker BUT I've seen lots of caring, intelligent young staff walk in some cases it seems SLT want someone who is compliant and weak.
    I have a lot of respect for new teachers now-remember we need them for the of our children. Older staff won't be around forever-even in good schools which value experience.
  19. bevdex

    bevdex Star commenter

    I do remember the framework where OFSTED presented every teacher with a brown envelope containing their personal grade. We had decided that this was divisive so every last one of us went in, said "thankyou very much" and binned the envelopes in front of the lead inspector. It's funny, but this little ceremony was discontinued in the next framework.
  20. Oldfashioned

    Oldfashioned Senior commenter

    OFSTED needs binning. The fact that they only recruit inspectors who are SLT tells you how little it is concerned with actual teaching knowledge and experience.
    Happygopolitely and agathamorse like this.

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