Schools: Standards

Department for Education written question – answered on 28th November 2014.

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Photo of Rosie Cooper Rosie Cooper Labour, West Lancashire

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what timeframe her Department has set for schools in special measures to improve their performance before it takes action.

Photo of Edward Timpson Edward Timpson The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Education

We have a duty to take swift action where we know children’s education is suffering. Schools in special measures will usually receive a monitoring inspection within 3 months and up to 4 further monitoring inspections over an 18-month period following the inspection that placed it in special measures. A school will normally be re-inspected within 24 months unless it is removed from special measures at a monitoring inspection.

Guidance for local authorities on intervening in ‘Schools Causing Concern’ is available online at:

There are a range of powers that the local authority and the Secretary of State may use to drive school improvement. There is a clear expectation that a school in special measures will convert to an academy with a strong sponsor as this is the most reliable way of securing the radical improvement the school requires. The Department writes to these schools to begin this process within five days of being notified by Ofsted of the judgement.

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