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Ofsted Gradings, Good or Bad?

23 June 2018

Blog

There are rumours that the Ofsted grading system may have an overhaul which will put an end to the Good and Outstanding grades and there will just be a pass/fail given. In my career I have had mostly positive Ofsted experiences with one not so great. I have enjoyed having Outstanding twice. But would it bother me if that grade went? Not at all!

What difference would it make? The differences between a really good “good” grade and outstanding are subtle. It’s very frustrating to be a whisper away from Outstanding and not be able to upgrade. Twice Ofsted inspectors have said...you’ll get it next time. Well that’s not guaranteed! A pass fail system would be fairer. It also upsets me when I hear another professional, not always working in a setting say “good is just basic”. Not helpful, not nice, don’t do it if you’re the one that says it. We’re trying amazingly hard here on the ground!

Would I try as hard with no grades above good? Hell yeah! I want to give children the best, I want my teams to be the best. Ofsted run a tight ship, so you have to aim high to show off on the report that follows. Most of all we always are looking for ways to improve and never stand still. It’s for the children, not for Ofsted.

Would it take the pressure off? To some extent. Trying to match the last Outstanding does have its downfall. You never want to be shown to be going down in quality. But inspectors can be objective and to some extent personally influenced however consistent you try and make the system. With two settings I feel they both deserve the same, but it’s not always the case.

So I will watch this space on this one. I’ll continue to follow the Ofsted Big Conversation and stalk Ofsted online for any developments.