Ofsted monitoring inspections to be done remotely

Ofsted has changed its plans for monitoring visits, which were due to begin next week, saying such visits will be done remotely rather than on site.

Ofsted explained: "The new government messages and the practical challenges of deploying inspectors across England have prompted this change."

Remote inspections of schools and further education providers will begin from 25 January, with a particular focus on how well children and learners are being educated remotely.

Ofsted will inspect schools rated ‘inadequate’ or ‘requires improvement’ as planned, but it will also follow up on complaints raised by parents across all grades of school in order to resolve issues. As these inspections will not involve an on-site visit, they will be unable to cover the full scope of a monitoring inspection. It will publish details of the inspection process shortly.

However, Ofsted will continue to undertake on-site inspections if it has immediate concerns – for example about safeguarding, the leadership of a school or a failure to provide education to children.

Regarding early years, Ofsted says it is not possible to provide the necessary level of assurance without an on-site inspection of the premises, so early years assurance visits will be paused until after the February half term.

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