Long gaps between inspections are threatening standards in Haringey schools, warn Liberal Democrat councillors. They have blamed the government policy of exempting schools that were rated 'outstanding' in their last inspection from routine inspections.
Muswell Hill Primary School was last inspected in December 2006, almost thirteen years ago. Rhodes Avenue, St James and Belmont were also last inspected over a decade ago. Whilst, Alexandra Park and Fortismere have not been inspected since 2011.
Sakina Chenot, councillor for Fortis Green and Haringey Lib Dem spokesperson on education, argues that:
“Some of the pupils who were at Muswell Hill Primary during its last inspection, will now have graduated from university. That’s ridiculous. A school can change a huge amount in just a few years, let alone thirteen!
“The Government’s view seems to be that once a school has been rated as ‘outstanding’, it cannot be improved any further and can’t deteriorate. Sadly, we know this is not the case. Half of schools previously rated as ‘outstanding’ lost that grade at their next inspection.”
Dawn Barnes, councillor for Crouch End and Lib Dem parliamentary candidate for Hornsey & Wood Green, added that:
“This is further evidence that the current inspection regime is broken. A Lib Dem government would scrap Ofsted and replace it with a new inspectorate that considers not just academic standards, but also pupils' welfare more broadly. We would also ensure that every school is inspected at least once every three years.”
Note to editor (1): Details of when Haringey schools were last inspected can be found by following this hyperlink.
Note to editor (2): Liberal Democrat policy on school inspections can be found on pp. 27-30 of this document.