Arab Today, arab today uk secondary schools \underperforming\
Last Updated : GMT 00:26:33
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today

UK Secondary schools \'underperforming\'

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today UK Secondary schools \'underperforming\'

London - Arabstoday

More than six-in-10 state secondaries in England were found to be not good enough under the new regime established to provide a more accurate picture of school performance. Around one-in-eight schools were given the lowest possible rating – more than four times higher than previous figures. Since January, Ofsted has placed a greater focus on key areas such as classroom teaching and behaviour. Schools are no longer inspected on “peripheral issues” such as equality, community cohesion, children’s spiritual development and pupil wellbeing. Last night, critics claimed that the findings reflected the “reality of what’s going on in schools”. But head teachers’ leaders have criticised the new system which they claim has been set up to attack schools rather than raise standards. Research by the National Association of Head Teachers found that almost all members believed Ofsted’s judgments were effectively biased and subject to \"political interference\". Speaking before the start of the union’s annual conference on Friday, Russell Hobby, NAHT general secretary, said: “The quality of Ofsted inspections is far too variable, too subjective. Pupils, parents and teachers deserve better than a roll of the dice for the result.” But Chris McGovern, a former head teacher and chairman of the Campaign for Real Education, said: “Schools are now inspected on the things that really matter and these figures reflect the reality of what’s going on in schools. “I am not surprised that these figures paint a much less flattering picture because schools are no longer assessed against a range of pointless, non-academic issues.” Under the new system, inspectors focus on just four areas – teaching standards, leadership, pupil achievement and behaviour – instead of the previous 26 separate assessments. Schools are no longer forced to complete “self-evaluation forms” in which heads rate themselves against 27 criteria. The new regime also focuses more strongly on schools previously ranked inadequate or satisfactory – Ofsted’s two lowest scores – rather than those named as good or outstanding. It already moved towards this system in 2009. Figures released following a Parliamentary question show that more than 300 schools were inspected under the first few weeks of the new regime. Of those, 13 per cent of secondaries were inadequate and 48 per cent were satisfactory. Just six per cent were outstanding and a third were “good”. It represents a dramatic fall in standards compared with previous data. Figures based on the last inspection of all schools – compiled at the end of 2011 – show that just three per cent were inadequate and 30 per cent were merely satisfactory. A quarter was outstanding. The shift was less marked for primary schools. Among those inspected in January, 15 per cent were inadequate, 30 per cent satisfactory, 52 per cent good and five per cent outstanding. Figures based on the most recent inspection for all primaries showed two per cent were inadequate, 29 per cent satisfactory, 51 per cent good and 18 per cent outstanding. An Ofsted spokeswoman said: “Given our increased attention on schools that are doing less well and the tighter focus on four key judgements, it is no surprise that the initial trend in outcomes for the new inspection arrangements shows an increased proportion of schools inspected going into special measures. “Inspectors are spending more time in classrooms observing the quality of teaching and looking in detail at the difference schools are making for pupils.”

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