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NAHT: Make inspection part of heads' duties

28/04/2014 Joanna
School inspections should become part of headteachers' duties, according to the country's largest heads' organisation.

The National Association of Headteachers (NAHT) will discuss the proposal at their annual conference next weekend. A document which is to be put to the conference will include a move to make every NAHT member duty-bound to become a school inspector, the Independent reports.

It is aimed at addressing the standard of inspections - an issue which has attracted widespread debate, with some think tanks claiming the existing arrangements are unsatisfactory.

Ofsted chief inspector Sir Michael Wilshaw has already said he would like to see more headteachers become inspectors. He has also announced a review into three private contractors which carry out most inspections.

Russell Hobby, the NAHT's general secretary, said: "One of the proposals in our manifesto is that we ask members whether it should be a duty of membership of the NAHT to participate in the inspection process.

"All members would be inspecting other heads' schools. We have had an informal survey of our members and 80 per cent said it would be a good idea."

The NAHT has already set up an informal inspection service, dubbed "Instead". It is seen as helpful in preparing schools for their official visit by Ofsted.

Under the new proposals, however, Ofsted inspectors could be relieved of the duty of inspecting all state schools and would be able to focus on schools that are struggling.

Mr Hobby believes the main problem currently affecting the system is the "lack of experienced school leaders" in inspection teams.

The conference is preparing to discuss some motions which are critical of Ofsted, including one regarding the ease of triggering an emergency inspection.

Recently, Ofsted announced a number of changes to the inspection regime, saying institutions which are currently rated as 'good' should not be subjected to routine full inspections.

Instead, a full inspection would only be carried out when a steep decline or significant improvement is observed in a good school.

Posted by Charlotte MichaelsADNFCR-2164-ID-801715579-ADNFCR
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