Ofsted risks put off school leaders, say heads
Published: 5th May 2012 11:56:32
Over 50% of deputy and head teachers do not want to apply for further posts as school leaders, the National Association of Heads Teachers warns.
The association says many good candidates are put off headship by the demands of Ofsted inspections.
From September schools given notice to improve by inspectors will only have two more chances to improve standards before being put into special measures.
The NAHT says heads need time to turn struggling schools around.
Speaking at the NAHT annual conference in Harrogate, general secretary Russell Hobby said: "It's three strikes and you're out - you have to wonder who is going to take on a school with two satisfactory Oftseds [inspection reports] when they then have a 12 month window to turn around that school.
"If they're going to take on those schools, they need to know they've got time and space to make those changes - otherwise we'll just see superficial measures to get the headline figures up.
"It's three strikes and you're out."
Meanwhile the incoming president of the NAHT and Yorkshire head teacher, Steve Iredale, accused ministers of playing Russian roulette with children's educations.
"Is it not time for governments, of whichever persuasion, to see the bigger picture and work towards the greater good for all children and the future economic success of our country rather than playing Russian roulette with their lives?
"You really do have to ask, does political meddling really have a place in our children's learning?"
Mr Iredale was also critical of Ofsted and the new chief inspector, Sir Michael Wilshaw's plans to introduce no-notice inspections from the autumn.
Currently, schools get up to two days' notice of an inspection.
Mr Iredale also challenged ministers to work with heads "in an open and honest way" to develop policies for schools.
"I am fed up to the back teeth of policies which are clearly created on the back of a fag packet and are consequently damaging our health, that of our children and the future prosperity of our nations."
The NAHT conference is also being addressed by the Education Secretary Michael Gove.
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Harvard CitationBBC News, 2012. Ofsted risks put off school leaders, say heads [Online] (Updated 5th May 2012)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/1426724/Ofsted-risks-put-off-school-leaders-say-heads [Accessed 25th Apr 2014]
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With the doors to its brand new £1million training centre officially open, one of the UK's leading apprentice training providers, Bristol based S&B Automotive Academy, is showcasing its world-class facilities by launching a series of foreign student exchanges for the first time in its 41-year history. To get a flavour of what life is like as an apprentice in the UK, the Academy hosted 16 apprentice engineers and bus drivers from the G9 Automotive College in Hamburg, Germany, as part of a Europe-wide vocational training initiative called the ‘Leonardo Programme’ with support from the European Social Fund. In a reciprocal arrangement, S&B will be sending nine apprentices to Germany during February 2012 so that they can get an appreciation of life in the automotive industry on the Continent. A further three German exchange groups are being planned for next year. Designed to assist the development of vocational skills and training across Europe, including work placements for trainees, the Leonardo Programme has a budget of €1.75bn, which is helping to encourage UK organisations to work with their counterparts abroad. In what is expected to be another challenging year for employers in the UK automotive sector, S&B’s Chief Executive, Jon Winter, claims that the exchange initiative will bring many benefits to the Academy and its apprentices: “In a world of global automotive brands, it’s important for our learners to understand the international context of the industry they have chosen to make their career. This new exchange programme will enable apprentices and Academy staff alike to achieve a better understanding of the challenges and opportunities within the automotive arena in Europe. With the Academy’s influence also extending to the USA and Asia, there’s every possibility that this initiative could move further afield in the future.” Continued Winter: “The need for skilled technicians across the world is on the increase and we actively encourage our apprentices to look at broader horizons during their training. Many of them have already learned the phrase ‘Vorsprung durch Gelehrtheit’, quite simply, ‘Advancement through learning.” In the 2010/11 academic year, S&B doubled the number of successful Apprenticeships over the previous year with some 350 apprentices graduating from the Academy. At the same time, achievement levels reached an all-time high with an overall success rate of 85%. For those learners on the Advanced Apprenticeship three-year programme, success rates were even higher, at over 98%. PHOTO CAPTION: As part of their exchange visit, S&B Automotive Academy arranged for the German apprentices to visit Hampshire bus operator, Bluestar, at its Barton Park depot. The students are pictured with S&B’s Andy West (3rd right) and Steve Prewett, Bluestar’s Area Engineering Manager (2nd right). Ends http://www.sandbaa.com
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