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making ‘outstanding’, stand out

29 July 2013

The 2012 Ofsted framework places more weight on the quality of teaching and learning. In the last academic year more than 100 schools have been downgraded by Ofsted inspectors, losing their sought after ‘outstanding’ rating.

Under the new regime a school cannot be classed as outstanding overall unless its teaching and learning is outstanding. As a result, schools that were top rated under the old regime have faced re-inspection, leading to some downgrading.

Primarily, schools are about teaching so many commentators in education welcome an Ofsted regime that focuses on just that. Others may well question whether the quality of inspection - a concern raised by many schools and professional associations - is to blame for a perceived drop in standards. Either way, schools should now know where they stand: safeguarding was once the key to Ofsted success; the quality of teaching is now the focus.

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