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Replace Ofsted

There is an urgent need for a better approach to school inspection.

NEU statement on Ofsted

The NEU has called for an immediate pause in Ofsted inspections in response to the coroner’s verdict and conclusions in the Ruth Perry inquest.

Read our full statement here

For more than 30 years, Ofsted’s toxic regime has been driving school leaders and teachers out of the profession and fuelling a mental health crisis among school staff.  

The National Education Union is proud to have been part of the Beyond Ofsted Inquiry – an independent inquiry made up of members of the NEU, industry experts, parents and academics and chaired by former schools minister Lord Jim Knight. It sought to establish an alternative to Ofsted that is supportive, effective and fair.

The Beyond Ofsted Inquiry’s final report was published in November 2023 and calls for radical and transformational change to the inspectorate.

Read the Inquiry’s recommendations

What can school leaders do?

The Beyond Ofsted Inquiry has called for an immediate pause to all routine Ofsted inspections to allow time to rest and regain the trust of the profession. Duty of care must be any inspectorate’s top priority.
School leaders can support this by:

Removing reference to Ofsted

Remove all references to your school’s Ofsted grading from banners on your school gates and letter heads. Don’t mention it at parents’ evenings/open days.

Stepping down from Ofsted roles

We urge you, alongside our sister union the NAHT, to step down from serving as Ofsted inspectors.

Play video Replace Ofsted hand-in video

Why must we replace Ofsted?

Schools must remain accountable – but we need a new system of inspection that is supportive, effective and fair. Nearly 40 per cent of teachers leave the profession within ten years, citing excessive workload caused by accountability as the main reason for choosing to go. No education system can succeed whilst it haemorrhages teachers and school leaders.

Blogs on what people think about Ofsted

Hungry for change

Students Hamza Shahbaz and Gabriel Perez detail their experiences of campaigning for much needed change in the education system, specifically around the outdated Ofsted inspectorate.

Ofsted, we need to talk

Michael Farrelly, senior leader in a Special primary school, explains how Ofsted is a driving factor in the teaching recruitment crisis.

Is Ofsted ‘independent’?

Education journalist Warwick Mansell questions Ofsted's claim of impartiality regarding recruitment to its controversial "curriculum unit"

Ofsted news

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