OFSTED Inspections

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Chat' started by BottyBurp, Feb 13, 2004.

  1. BottyBurp

    BottyBurp Member

    Why do teachers fear OFSTED Inspections? A day or so ago, there was an item on the news saying that there was a proposal to do away with the 4 months notice period, instead just 48 hours. Now teachers (or their representatives) are up in arms about this! In my line of work, I'm constantly being appraised. If I'm no good, I get the push. I don't see what the problem is?
  2. amgray

    amgray Member

    The responses to this should be interesting!!! :shock: Stand by to repel boarders :twisted:

    I'm married to a teacher who has been through 3 Ofsted inspections in different schools (including her final TP) - with widely different expectations, criteria and agendas from the Ofsted teams (consistency and standards????).
    16:30 or so should see the fun start :lol:

    Best of luck mate :p
  3. PeterBale

    PeterBale Moderator Staff Member

    Although not directly involved in education myself, I have a number of friends who are, including one who's recently qualified as an Ofsted inspector (BOO!!!!)

    It seems to me that the current system involves a vast amount of paperwork, and is very stressful to both the teachers and, so some extent, the inspectors. There seem to be various hoops to jump through, not all of which seem very relevant to the actual job in hand - ie imparting knowledge to the children.

    I've also been well used to ongoing appraisal in work situations, but it must be all the harder to assess when you've got unpredictable elements such as bored and disinterested children in the equation.
  4. johnmartin

    johnmartin Active Member

    Why wait that long. Surely they get out earlier than that or perhaps there's some "in service" day or half-term , quarter-term or eighth-term or something holiday.

    Dons tin helmet and flame retardent band uniform
  5. jimmythesaint

    jimmythesaint Member

    Should I rise to this one?!! No, what I'll do is get all the common misconceptions out of the way, so we can have a serious conversation!!!!

    Yes, us teachers start at nine, finish at 3.15, only a six and half hour day, oh... I've forgotten we have an hour and half worth of break times, we have 14 weeks holiday and get paid too much money!

    Good, now let us begin!!!
    Jimmy (half tongue in cheek!)
  6. amgray

    amgray Member

    Insufficient protection methinks...... :shock:
  7. Naomi McFadyen

    Naomi McFadyen New Member


    I remember when I was in year 12, ofsted week, the school made sure I wasn't in the music class the day the inspector was due! (a double lesson at that!) I was sent to the Heads office instead for a chat... They were scared I was gonna spill the beans on some bad happenings in the past I think :twisted:
  8. Dilbert

    Dilbert New Member

    If it was up to me I'd have cameras installed in every class room and a panel of Ofsted inspectors at a regional control centre snooping on them at will. The behaviour in a lot of schools is shocking.
    Where I live there are schools next door to each other that have have identical socio-economic intakes and one does twice as good as the other. The only reason for this is the teachers not getting control and taking their responsibilities seriously enough.
    I agree there's too much paperwork but any failing school needs a good kick up the backside. And the inspectors should keep kicking until the school is up to scratch. Kids education is the most important thing they will ever have.

    I'll crawl into my bunker now.
  9. Banana

    Banana Member

    Ive been saying for ages that OFSTED inspections should last for a couple of days only with no notice at all, so this is a step in the right direction. That way, the inspection sees what the school is really like and the staff don't kill themselves for 6 weeks beforehand preparing.
  10. horn1

    horn1 Member

    I think many people have the misconception that appraisal isn't a standard part of teachers jobs except for OFSTED. All teachers are appraised throughout the year by members of the senior management team observing their lessons. As well as this other collegues, teaching students and support staff regularly observe lessons.

    The problem with OFSTED is that teachers are frequently critcised for things that they have little or no control of. A music department that I know of was recently inspected and critisised for things such as: other subjects using their room, lack of computer facilities etc. etc. If the managment team of your school is not prepared to sort these things out then you are fighting a losing battle.

    I haven't yet had to go through an OFSTED myself yet but have lived through two of my mum's. Not a pretty sight! Being inspected is extremly stressful because everything is expected to be perfect, this is not a realistic expectation in teaching. There is simply not enough time in the day to do everything, so somethings have to give. Planning is extremly time consuming, as is preparing resources. As a new teacher I spend a large amount of time preparing worksheets, laminated cards, assessment sheets etc. Next week whilst I am on half term, I will not only be moving into my new house but preparing a new scheme of work along with worksheets, arrangments, backing tracks and preparing all the paperwork to set up my new brass band.
    If OFTSED were to come into my department at the moment I know what the weaknesses would be: poor accomadation, lack of ICT at key stage three and few extra-curricular activities. I am attempting to rectify the situation in the one area I can. Mostly thanks to staying in school late and working in holidays and weekends.
  11. Dawnys_flug

    Dawnys_flug Member

    LOL our school seems to have suddenly shifted into smartness gear! You can't turn a corner without being confronted by a senior member of staff!!
    Me thinks it might be in light of the recent changes! :wink:

    Don't you think that with it being short notice, could happen at anytime, it might put a bit too much pressure on teachers though?? And when they do find out 48 hours prior to the visit, they will be up all night doing loads of paperwork etc. anyway?? (look at me- student on the teachers side!!)
    It's obviously stressed out the lot at my school and it's only just been brought into light!
  12. SammyT

    SammyT Member

    well OFSTED hey!!!
    This is my first post for a while!!! I have just logged on for the 1st time since 11th Jan and there was over 13000 new posts (36pages!!!!!!!!!!!) and I found this post!
    The reason for this long gap - OFSTED. We had it last week of Jan and I have just had the time to come back on line!!!
    I spent weeks preparing (I do prepare well normally but you have to write everything down for them when it is normally automatic!!!!!!!!)
    This was my 1st inspection and it made me very tired and stressed just to be observed for 2 1/2 lessons. (No full lesson observed!!)
    The report (which is still confidential) is very dodgy because they have certain things they can report on but because the last inspectors did not write something down we cannot be given a better mark cause they have nothing to refer to even though we can prove it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    It made some members of staff very upset because they did not get very good marks because a couple of kids really played up deliberatley (they were delt with by the head - but inspectors just went "well that is what I saw so there!!!"
    Anyway rant over - I have a lot of reading to do (aaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhh!)
  13. NeilW

    NeilW Member

    A friend of mine, who has been teaching for a number of years has been through her third Ofsted this year too - and it has driven her to illness.

    She works in a school in a fairly "rough" area of a big city.

    As has been pointed out, having "documented", up-to-date plans for the inspectors to see consumes HUGE amounts of time prior to the inspection.

    The thing she finds most difficult is the fact that the inspectors come in and critise: they offer no advice on how to address the problems they see. The "old" (pre-ofsted) system had many more short inspections, often by the same LEA inspector, who offered constructive advice on improving what they saw.

    As an experienced teacher (head of a four subject department), she's thinking of leaving the profession altogether following the inspection as she's so dissolutioned with the system.

  14. SammyT

    SammyT Member

    yeah its true!
    My department got inspected at A level as well and my head of department asked how we could do better and the inspecter said we couldn't!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Explain that when we did not get top marks (we did not do bad though!!!) it is such a stupid system!!!!!!
  15. Moy

    Moy Active Member

    Well I have been working in Aberdeenshire since Regionalisation and they are just about to advertise for another Head of Instrumental Service.
    So in the space of about 10 years we are now about to have our 4th or is it 5th change........must be stress. :cry:

    Hope nobody applies because the best was when we had no boss. Things seemed to run very smoothly.
  16. amgray

    amgray Member

    My wifes school has recently been inspected by HMI after an Ofsted. One teacher was criticised for handing out christmas cards 5 mins from the end of the day as it wasn't on the plans!!!!

    This is 1 week from the end of the Christmas term and at the end of a PHSE (Personal, Social and Health Education) lesson for 5 year olds.

    Inspector Jobsworth strikes again!!!