Ofsted’s inspection of schools

Ofsted (the Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills) inspects a wide range of education and skills providers and social care services for children and young people, and regulates providers in some settings such as children’s homes. Through its work, Ofsted aims to raise the standard of education and quality of life for children and young people.

Through its inspection of schools Ofsted plays a vital role in the functioning and assessment of the education system. During 2016-17, Ofsted inspected 5,131 schools in England. The Department for Education and local authorities rely on Ofsted’s school inspection judgements to gain assurance about the quality of education in schools, and to intervene where schools are failing. Parents and carers use Ofsted reports to help make choices about which school they would like their children to go to.

This study will examine the extent to which Ofsted’s approach to inspecting schools is providing value for money. We will assess if Ofsted:

is well-placed to inspect schools efficiently and effectively;

 inspects schools in an efficient and effective way; and

 knows if its school inspections are having a positive impact.

If you would like to provide evidence for our study please email the study team on enquiries@nao.gsi.gov.uk putting the study title in the subject line. The team will consider the evidence you provide; however, please note that due to the volume of information we receive we may not respond to you directly. If you need to raise a concern please use our contact form.