A former National Schools Commissioner (NSC) from the Department for Education has requested that Ofsted pause all school inspections for the next 18 months.
The former Commissioner, Sir David Carter says that schools should be given time to recover from the impact of coronavirus, and so should not be inspected during the next academic year.
Taking to Twitter, he said that Ofsted inspections should not resume until at least 2021, warning that students will have missed six months of teaching and and that some staff may not even return.
”It’s going to be a national mission to make up for lost time.Geoff BartonGeneral Secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders
“In terms of inspection I cannot see how it can restart ahead of Sept 2021,” he wrote.
“One – kids will have missed six months of school; two – some staff may not return and that needs incredible sensitivity; three – year 10 are doing GCSEs on six months less teaching; four – schools will feel empowered to say enough is enough.”
His sentiment was echoed by Geoff Barton, the general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, who also called for time to be given for students to readjust to school life before inspectors return.
He said: “We are talking about the longest period of time children will have sprnt away from structured learning in this country for a very long time. Longer than during the Second World War.
“If young people are going to be without structured learning for six months than the focus of the profession is going to have to be making up for lost time.
“We are going to need to work on getting children to re-socialise and to get used to what is expected of them in school again. This is going to be the focus of the first term at least.
“It’s going to be a national mission to make up for lost time.”
When Will Inspections Resume?
Ofsted had already announced a suspension on all routine inspections before school closures were officially implemented. This came after rumours of them undertaking ‘panic inspections’ right before schools were closed.
It has also announced it will not hold schools accountable on this year’s GCSE and A-Level grades.
However, there is still as of yet no sign of when inspections will properly resume.
“Any thought about accountability measures, inspections and league tables will have to wait,” Mr. Barton said.
“If we work on the assumption that schools return in September then I think the earliest we could think about the inspections returning would be January 2021.”