Best Practice

Ofsted: Leadership and Management

In the third of our series focusing on the four core inspection judgements, we hear from schools judged outstanding for leadership and management and offer advice for other schools seeking to improve in this crucial area. Suzanne O’Connell reports

Every judgement in an Ofsted report is vital to you as headteacher. However, the judgement of leadership and management has a particular significance. This is where the inspectors have focused specifically on your ability as a school leader and the leadership skills in others that you have fostered. 

During the feedback session it is often the last verdict to be given. However, the leadership judgement does not always reflect the school’s overall judgement for effectiveness. There are schools where a new leader has really galvanised those around them and progress and improvements need recognition. 

As the number of judgements in the inspection framework has shrunk, so leadership and management has absorbed them. Inspectors are asked to consider partnerships with parents and the community, safeguarding, curriculum, and spiritual, moral, social, cultural (SMSC) aspects within the leadership and management judgement. More recently we have seen reporting on primary school sport funding and systems leadership added to the list. In this article we speak to three schools who have been given an “outstanding” judgement for leadership and management in this new inspection framework. We ask them to reflect on their experience, what the inspectors liked and what their advice is to other schools. 

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