The Northern Rocks Education Conference was held on Saturday 7th June at Leeds Metropolitan University. You can read more about the event here. Mary Myatt (Lead Ofsted Inspector @MaryMyatt) was one of the speakers. Her session was on Ofsted; FAQ. Prior to the conference, Mary tweeted asking people if there were any questions they would like covered in her session. This was a brilliant idea! Many of her followers (including me) who couldn’t be at the conference tweeted back with questions. Mary has blogged about the questions she was asked and the replies. My question was about governance. The question and the reply are reproduced below, with Mary’s permission.
Q: What does Ofsted expect governors to do when looking at books, going into classrooms?
Ans: An inspection team will expect the governors to have a clear view about the strengths of the school and the areas for improvement. As part of their role, they might go into classrooms and look at books in order to have discussions with teachers and leaders about the quality of provision. This would provide them with information about how the school is meeting the targets it has set itself in the development plan. Some schools consider samples of work during governing body meetings. It is up to the school and governing body to agree how governors should go into classrooms and look at children’s work.
Following on from my previous post, it is good to have clarity, from a Lead Inspector, about this part of the governors’ role. Remember, we are going into classrooms not to make judgements about the teachers or lessons but to see for ourselves how the school is doing and is it meeting the SDP targets. Another important point to remember is that a clear protocol agreed by the governors and the staff must be in place before we step into a classroom.
With thanks to Mary Myatt
Read what the Department has to say about governor visits.
NGA’s classroom visit form and guidelines