Tom Burkard writes for the telegraph on Ofsted blighting poor pupils

CPS research fellow Tom Burkard, author of Children Behaving Better and founder of the Phoenix Free School in Oldham, writes that Ofsted itself is blighting poor pupils on 2 December 2016.

“I don’t think anyone doubts that Sir Michael Wilshaw is sincere in his desire to raise standards in schools serving disadvantaged communities. He is admirably frank in admitting that Ofsted has failed to make much of an impact, especially in the North of England. He is right to highlight the shortage of good teachers — but he fails to understand that Ofsted itself is actually driving good teachers out of the profession.

Once a school is identified by Ofsted as needing improvement, teacher workload increases enormously. To provide “proof of progress,” secondary teachers may have to mark anything up to 200 workbooks every two weeks. This alone can create an almost surreal workload. “Performance Management” entails frequent lesson observations by senior management. Pupils soon get the message that their teachers aren’t true professionals — they aren’t trusted.

On top of this, teachers in failing schools must attend training sessions and endless staff meetings, even if they are already excellent teachers. Sadly, there is almost no evidence that any of these actions actually improve learning. Likewise, there is little evidence that exam results improve following an Ofsted inspection, and some evidence to show that they drop. ”

Read the full article at the Telegraph website.

Date Added: Friday 2nd December 2016