A recent report from the school inspection body Ofsted has said that there are too many schools in theUKwhich are not encouraging children to reach the potential that they are capable of. Ofsted have said that too many schools are at a satisfactory level and are not going above and beyond on teaching quality. In over 40% of schools in theUKteaching levels were either satisfactory or worse.
Miriam Rosen is the chief inspector at Ofsted and she has commented, “It is a great concern to me that many schools are failing to achieve a level beyond satisfactory. It is essential that schools in theUKstart to improve as satisfactory as the minimum level schools should be achieving and they should really go above and beyond this.”
The report also showed that schools that were serving students from deprived backgrounds were performing significantly worse than those in areas of greater wealth. In the poorest areas of the country it is four times more likely that the school will be given a grade of inadequate compared to a wealthy area. Despite this, nearly 90 schools in the most deprived areas of the country received the highest grade of outstanding.
The education watchdog has issued a warning that schools in prosperous areas are often found to just coast along. Their results are respectable but the staff are not stretching pupils to achieve more. 800 schools involved in the inspection have been judged a satisfactory two times in a row. This suggests that schools that are given an inadequate grade make a lot of effort to improve their standards but a satisfactory grade encourages schools to just remain the same.
The schools Minister has commented, “Schools should be pushing pupils to achieve their full potential and it is a real concern to me that some are just happy to coast along with average results.”
Receiving a satisfactory grade means that there will be no intervention in the school but there are two higher grades above this which are ‘good’ and ‘outstanding.’ One fifth of schools in theUKare rated as outstanding, half of them are rated as good and around 30% received the satisfactory grade. Only 2% of schools are rated as inadequate, which is the lowest grade.
Ms Rosen continued, “Unfortunately, much of the teaching that our inspectors saw this year was of poor quality. Good teaching standards are essential to a good education and colleges are one of the institutions which are performing the worst. This year not a single college received an outstanding grade.”
Changes have recently been accepted and have changed the inspection system. Schools that are rated as outstanding will not have any further inspections so that more focus can be put on schools that are receiving satisfactory or inadequate grades. However, schools rated as outstanding often slip back to the good grade.