Press release

Inspection of Portsmouth school improvement support

Ofsted has today (23 March 2016) published the outcome letter of its inspection of Portsmouth City Council’s support for school improvement.

The inspection of Portsmouth council was conducted by Her Majesty’s Inspectors (HMI) between 8 and 12 February 2016. Seven schools were inspected as part of this exercise and a telephone survey of a sample of 15 schools and academies was carried out between 1 and 8 February.

In addition, inspectors held discussions with elected members, senior officers and school improvement staff. Inspectors met with headteachers, principals and governors from schools, colleges, academies, teaching school alliances and the schools forum. Discussions were also held with representatives of services that deliver support for school improvement and with contracted consultants.

A range of documents were also scrutinised by the inspection team, including council plans, the strategy for school improvement, information about pupils’ achievement, case studies about schools receiving support, notes of visits to schools made by education officers and Ofsted school inspection reports.

The inspection followed the focused inspection of Portsmouth schools in February 2013 and monitoring by HMIs of educational standards achieved in the local authority since that time.

Notes to editors

  1. Read Portsmouth City Council’s school improvement outcome letter
  2. Read the framework for the inspection of local authority arrangements for supporting school improvement. The aim of these inspections is to assist local authorities in their duty to promote high standards and fulfilment of potential so that all children and young people benefit from at least a good education. This inspection framework acts as a powerful lever for improvement by helping to challenge inconsistencies. It enables Ofsted to report more rigorously on the contribution of local authorities to improving education in England. The inspection is not universal. Ofsted will normally inspect only where concerns about performance are apparent or where requested to do so by the Secretary of State, although, in the future, we may inspect local authorities to gather evidence of good practice.
  3. The Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills (Ofsted) regulates and inspects to achieve excellence in the care of children and young people, and in education and skills for learners of all ages. It regulates and inspects childcare and children’s social care, and inspects the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service (Cafcass), schools, colleges, initial teacher training, work-based learning and skills training, adult and community learning, and education and training in prisons and other secure establishments. It inspects services for looked after children, safeguarding and child protection.

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