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Schools: Inspections

Department for Education written question – answered on 13th January 2020.

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Photo of Angela Rayner Angela Rayner Shadow Secretary of State for Education

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to his Department's press release, Raising expectations of children and parents, high standards for teachers and tackling bad behaviour: how schools in left behind areas can improve, published on 8 January 2020, whether he plans to fund Ofsted to trial a longer, deeper inspection approach with some of those schools.

Photo of Nick Gibb Nick Gibb Minister of State (Education)

The Department is committed to tackling entrenched underperformance in schools wherever it exists.

Last September, following confirmation of the biggest funding boost for schools in a decade, totaling an additional £14 billion over three years, the Department announced that we will provide more support for persistently underperforming schools from high-performing, experienced school leaders. These mechanisms are now being put in place.

We also confirmed that we would work with Ofsted so that it can provide more detailed analysis on areas of improvement for these schools. We have been doing so and will be confirming details in due course. This announcement can be found at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/new-drive-to-continue-boosting-standards-in-schools.

On 10 January, the Department also launched a public consultation on removing the exemption from routine inspection for schools previously rated outstanding by Ofsted. The aim is to lift the exemption from September 2020, subject to the consultation outcome and parliamentary approval. Ending the exemption will mean all parents have up to date information about every school and can be confident that their children’s schools are continuing to deliver the best education. The Department will provide additional funding for these inspections for 2020-21, and funding for subsequent years will be determined through the forthcoming Spending Review.

The press release can be found at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/raising-expectations-of-children-and-parents-high-standards-for-teachers-and-tackling-bad-behaviour-how-schools-in-left-behind-areas-can-improve.

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