Since entering 2023, the educational sector news has been dominated by two key elements. Firstly the strikes we discussed last week, of which NEU members are to begin strikes from February 1st. Equally, Ofsted has dominated the news in the past 2 weeks.
This week Ofsted have recognised that their complaints policy is flawed after an 8-year low in the percentage of complaints with upheld aspects.
The review will take a look at moving the policy from a bureaucratic approach to a more humanised approach, with the ability to see the “bigger picture” over individual incidents.
The aim is to ensure that all complaints are looked at equally and to remove the rigid structure of complaint handling to replace it with a case-by-case human aspect.
Aside from a review of the complaints policy, Ofsted is also looking to review its inspections. This follows reports that there have been inconsistencies in the way that judgements are delivered and therefore the rating that they receive.
Unfortunately, this has come to light in the process of processing complaints, whereby students have been asked questions that are deemed “inappropriate” for the course of the inspection. Including asking a child if he thought it was a “white middle-class school” and asking a young girl if she felt uncomfortable walking upstairs in a skirt.
To combat the issue, new training is being rolled out across the country called “seeing the bigger picture”.
This story has been more of a stark warning from Ofsted to the education sector as a whole. Following on from their 21-22 report, they have warned about the pressures within schools due to the difficulty in the recruiting process. They have also emphasised that the children are those being affected the most.
With the crisis on the increase, where schools have teaching gaps, these are currently being filled with an agency, temporary or HLTA’s, rather than full-time teachers.
While the workforce crisis is affecting the UK, here at The Learning College we are doing all we can to help schools. This includes creating partnerships to get Teaching Assistants upskilled to take on more responsibility, including offering HLTA courses. We have also partnered up with a recruitment agency that offers both full-time and agency staff. If you require assistance, please contact the team today to see how we can assist you.