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Gove attacking OFSTED

(18 Posts)
JessM Sun 26-Jan-14 09:20:39

This is interesting, and rather shocking. Gove appears to undermining OFSTED. Having undermined local education authorities via cuts, academies and free schools is he intent on letting schools get on with it, with the only controls being central? - What are your stats like? Not good enough? Well then we The Department will take unilateral punitive action - sack the head, force the school to become an academy or close it down and let the local free school take the kids?
All this totally at odds of course with the notion that schools should have some freedom.

Iam64 Sun 26-Jan-14 09:39:59

I just heard this news on radio 4. My initial response on reading that Michael Wilshaw is, in his words, "spitting blood" was that here we have two big male beasts, circling each other, ready for a real scrap.
Great! Just the example we need to set for our children isn't it.
I've heard Wilshaw on the radio a number of times recently, and can't say I've either warmed to him, or been impressed him. This week, he's talked about the need for social workers to tell parents they're are 'bad parents', as says he did when a head teacher. Oh, right, that'll sort it then Michael.

These two Michaels combine to make a minefield in education and in the approach to working effectively to improve educational standards

Aka Sun 26-Jan-14 09:57:18

It's a well known stratey isn't it Jess?
You divide and rule and cut down opposition one by one. I didn't see anyone out up much opposition when he cut the power of LAs and now it's OFSTED. Wonder who'll win this power struggle?

Aka Sun 26-Jan-14 09:57:39


Nelliemoser Sun 26-Jan-14 10:12:03

To put it in technical terms, I really am beginning to wonder if Gove has a screw loose! He has no professional experience of education and seems to have no idea that as a politician his job is to listen to the concerns of the populace.

He should be talking to the professionals and academics who are "in the business " of education and taking note of their experience. Not riding roughshod over their knowledge.

I would prefer that any politician makes a "U turn" on policy after listening to advice and research on his subject than to blindly carry on with half baked policies so as not to appear to be a weak politician. His attitude in this very frightening.

Whatever ministerial role he takes on he should never forget that even that woman Margaret Thatcher was eventually brought down by her own cabinet colleagues because they could not cope with her overbearing arrogance any longer.

JessM Sun 26-Jan-14 10:34:17

Exam :
Use of English Language.
Please tick, a, b or c

If you are angry are you:

a/spitting feathers
b/spitting tacks
c/spitting blood


Aka Sun 26-Jan-14 10:54:00

Let me dig out my Angus McIver 'First Aid in English'.

Mishap Sun 26-Jan-14 11:58:07

The problem with OfSted is that the judgement can depend on the inspector to an unacceptable degree. Some are human and understand that a very tiny school with one third SEN is unlikely to shine with its data and are willing to listen to the back story and look at what good things the school is doing; and others are inflexible.

There has to be some sort of inspection, as schools and their governors are unsupported by the LEAs which are withering away.

This attack is unedifying; but I do not entirely agree with the substance of the attack, which, if I have read it right, is that OfSted is a bit wishy-washy lefty in its educational attitudes - if it were, I do not think it would be so wedded to data.

Mishap Sun 26-Jan-14 12:17:19

Having just read the article in the ST, Gove's gripe (and that of his mates) seems to be that OfSted is giving academies and free schools bad reports where that is appropriate. What did he expect?

JessM Sun 26-Jan-14 22:12:36

Ah is that what it is. You can criticise LA schools but not any academies or free schools. well that explains why he is in a strop.

Penstemmon Sun 26-Jan-14 22:28:49

I think Gove recently had to begrudgingly accept that there has been some good news from LA schools. This information comes from OFSTED.

OFSTED, trying hard to be a politically independent (if imperfect) inspection service have applied the same judgement criteria to Academies as it does to LA schools and have discovered that it is not what you call a school or who puts the money into the school budget that matters! You get brilliant Academies and LA schools and weaker Academies and LA schools. Therefore to promote Academies over LA schools is based on political ideology rather than educational improvement.

Eloethan Mon 27-Jan-14 00:15:21

I have no confidence in either of them.

Iam64 Mon 27-Jan-14 17:51:36

I don't either Eloethan.

JessM Mon 27-Jan-14 17:58:55

I think OFSTED will vary in its judgements according to the sympathies (or not) of the team that does the inspection. But they try to make it as standard a process as possible. Gove is just on a ideology driven trip and wants to be party leader.

redeagle777 Fri 21-Feb-14 14:24:13

Message deleted by Gransnet for breaking our forum guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

JessM Fri 21-Mar-14 08:07:40

Head of Ofsted to announce another round of changes to inspection programme. Hope for the sake of the teachers that the actual inspection criteria are not changing again. Some schools have not had an inspection yet since the last changes.

Lilygran Fri 21-Mar-14 08:41:28

Wilshaw on Today has just said that if he finds a not-very-good school where the head is doing his best to improve things and is on the right lines, he will always write to praise him for his efforts. The school still gets a poor assessment, though!

Mishap Fri 21-Mar-14 09:00:13

That seems a fair thing to do - and the praise for the head should be part of the report. I suspect that this is where the school I am governor to will fall - we are all working our tripe out to raise standards and hope very much that this will be recognised in the inspection report. We have inherited several problems which we are actively striving to deal with. It would be entirely unfair if no mention were made of this.