Tell Ofsted about your child’s school

Parents Education
20 August 2019
Sean Harford
Sean Harford is National Director, Education. Sean was appointed Her Majesty’s Inspector in 2003. Since joining Ofsted he has worked in school improvement, school inspection policy and organisational restructuring. His previous post in Ofsted was National Director, Schools. Before joining Ofsted, Sean was a teacher and a successful senior leader in a secondary school in the East of England, as well as associate adviser for a local authority. 
When we’re inspecting a school, we gather information from many different sources to build up a detailed picture. For instance, we talk to staff and children, we look at what children are learning and how well they are progressing, and we look at information provided by parents.

Ofsted Parent View gives you the chance to tell Ofsted what you think about your child’s school, from the quality of teaching to dealing with bullying and poor behaviour. The survey can be completed at any time; you don’t have to wait until the school is being inspected.

You may have heard that we are launching our new framework, the education inspection framework, in September. This means we’ll be inspecting in a different way and focusing much more on the curriculum – what and when children are learning, and how it fits together in a coherent sequence.

Parents’ views will be as important as ever in helping inspectors get a rounded view of the school, including what you value about the school, along with any areas of concern. So, alongside the new framework starting in September we will also update Ofsted Parent View. The statements which parents tell us they agree or disagree with need to reflect both what we look at on inspection and what parents want to tell us. We’ve tested these new statements extensively with parents and have based them on what you want to know and can answer, what inspectors want to know and what schools find useful.

We have added a statement for parents of children with special education needs and/​or disabilities (SEND) which has been welcomed by many. The new framework puts more emphasis on how schools are making sure that they are inclusive for children with SEND and take their needs into account.

Some of the new statements that parents are asked whether they agree with or not, are:

  • There is a good range of subjects available to my child at this school
  • My child can take part in clubs and activities at this school
  • The school supports my child’s wider personal development

We found that some of the current statements were difficult for parents to answer.

For example, the current question on bullying is This school deals effectively with bullying’. Many parents answered don’t know’ either because they felt they couldn’t answer outside their own experience, or because their child had not been bullied. The question on bullying now reads:

My child has been bullied and the school dealt with the bullying quickly and effectively’ – with a new answer option: My child has not been bullied’.

We also removed the statement asking whether parents agreed that their child was well taught, given the limited information available to them.

School results from previous years will still be available on the site, so parents will be able to see what previous answers have been given.

Ofsted Parent View is an old site. It’s served our inspection needs reasonably well, but we’re now in the early stages of a project to replace it with a new service that will better meet the needs of parents, inspectors and schools. We’ll be working closely with schools and parents over the coming year to explore and test our ideas for that new service.

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