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Leadership & Management
Items related to leadership and management in education.

Inspection handbook for non-association independent schools.


  1. This handbook describes the main activities undertaken during inspections of non-association independent schools in England under section 109(1) and (2) of the Education and Skills Act 2008 from September 2015.[1] It sets out the evaluation criteria that inspectors use to make their judgements and on which they report. This includes the extent to which the school meets the requirements of the Education (Independent School Standards) Regulations 2014 (referred to as the independent school standards).[2]
  2. The handbook has two parts:

n  Part 1. How non-association independent schools (referred to as schools) will be inspected.
This contains information about the process before, during and after the inspection.

n  Part 2. The evaluation schedule.
This contains the evaluation criteria inspectors use to make the graded judgements about schools. It includes the kinds of evidence used and activities carried out by inspectors to make their judgements.

  1. This handbook is primarily a guide for inspectors on how to carry out school inspections. However, it is made available to schools and other organisations to ensure that they are informed about the process and procedures of inspection. It seeks to balance the need for consistency in inspections with the flexibility required to respond to the individual circumstances of each school. This handbook should not be regarded as a set of inflexible rules, but as an account of the procedures that normally govern inspection. Inspectors will exercise their professional judgement when using it. This handbook is for school inspections to be carried out from September 2015 under the new ‘Common inspection framework: education, skills and early years’(the CIF).[3]
  2. This handbookapplies to standard inspections. It does not cover the range of additional inspections that Ofsted undertakes of independent schools: emergency, progress monitoring, pre-registration and material change inspections. Guidance on these inspections is available in the ‘Handbook for additional inspections of non-association independent schools’.[4]


Read the full handbook.

[1] Education and Skills Act 2008;

[2] The Education (Independent School Standards)
Regulations 2014;

[3] ‘Common inspection framework: education, skills and early years’, Ofsted, 2015;

[4] ‘Handbook for additional inspections of independent schools’, Ofsted, 2018;

Children's Commissioner intervenes in Council cuts.

Vulnerable children cannot get help from some cash-strapped councils, the Children's Commissioner for England has warned.

Anne Longfield said she feared the financial crisis at Northamptonshire County Council would have "catastrophic consequences" for some children.

Both Northamptonshire and East Sussex councils are planning major service cuts due to funding shortfalls.

Ms Longfield wants the government to protect children from any council cuts.

The Department for Education said it was working across government to ensure Tory-run Northamptonshire County Council met its legal duties to children despite its troubled finances.


Earlier this week, the authority outlined a "radical" £70m savings plan, which did not rule out cuts to children's services.

Read more.

Education tech revolution?

Tech companies in the UK and abroad, including Apple and Microsoft, have been urged to help foster an education revolution by putting technology at the heart of the classroom.

The education secretary, Damian Hinds, said only a minority of schools and colleges were taking advantage of opportunities to bring education to life by, for instance, enabling children to take virtual trips through the Amazon or to control robots.

Technology can also slash the time teachers spend on burdensome administrative tasks, he said on Tuesday, but Hinds implored the UK’s burgeoning tech industry, along with the Silicon Valley giants, to provide support.

Read more.

Call for maintenance grants to be reintroduced.

The head of an elite group of universities has called for maintenance grants to be restored to help improve diversity in higher education.

Tim Bradshaw, who leads the Russell Group, told the Independent the grant could make a "substantial difference" to young people "nervous" about debt.

He said it could also encourage more people to consider applying at all.

The government says it has made significant progress in getting disadvantaged students into university.

Read the full story.

Should private schools provide places for looked after children?

Private schools should provide boarding places for thousands of looked-after children as a way of resisting pressure to strip them of their charitable status, the government has said.

Education Minister Nadhim Zahawi claimed that Labour "would never be able to abolish" private schools if they helped to improve the life chances of vulnerable children.

Mr Zahawi praised 40 independent schools for taking part in a government-backed scheme that provides places for looked-after children.

The education minister told Newsnight that hundreds of other private schools should also join the Boarding School Partnership if they wanted to survive in a hostile political environment.

Private schools have faced increasing pressure in recent years from across the political spectrum to be stripped of their charitable status which grants them tax breaks.

Read more.


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