Ofsted to continue interim visits remotely during second lockdown

Following the announcement that education providers will remain open during the second national lockdown, Ofsted has stated that they will conduct their autumn term interim visits remotely where possible. Regulatory work will continue to be carried out when responding to concerns around unregistered schools, safeguarding and breakdowns in leadership.  

Ofsted has also published their findings report from inspections conducted between September 2019 and August 2020 under the new inspection framework which found that 86% of inspected schools were rated ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’. An Ofsted spokesperson said that standards have “improved significantly compared to 10 years ago”. 

Prior to the announcement of the second national lockdown, Ofsted intended to restart full inspections in January 2021. The inspectorate has not yet specified whether the date to restart full inspections will be changed or reviewed as a result of the second lockdown. Key voices in the sector think resuming full inspections in January is now no longer feasible given the current situation with the pandemic. ASCL, NAHT, NEU and the NGA have written recently to Ofsted to advise Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector, Amanda Spielman, that as a collective, they don’t think full inspection should be starting again in January.