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Half of schools improve Ofsted rating

Almost half the schools inspected in England last term have improved their overall rating, Ofsted chief inspector Sir Michael Wilshaw has announced.

Out of more than 2,000 state-funded schools, 977 inspected by Ofsted between October and December last year were rated better than in their previous inspection. The proportion of ‘outstanding’ or ‘good’ schools rose to 74%.

Sir Michael highlighted the changes to Ofsted’s inspection regime for the improvements. Last September, Ofsted replaced the ‘satisfactory’ rating with ‘requires improvement’, which they say has upped standards.

Schools classed as outstanding no longer require regular inspections. Of 2,102 schools, 9% were rated outstanding, 55% good, 31% need improvement and 6% inadequate.

Sir Michael said: “I’m clear that scrapping the satisfactory judgement and replacing it with ‘requires improvement’ is injecting a sense of urgency in both schools and local authorities.

“Heads and governing boards now have a much greater focus on tackling the central issues of school improvement. This is encouraging and I congratulate all those head teachers who are successfully leading the drive to get their school to ‘good’.”

Christine Blower, the general secretary of the National Union of Teachers said: “At last some positive words from Sir Michael Wilshaw who has described as 'very encouraging' the fact that three quarters of all schools are good, or outstanding. The NUT says congratulations to them all.

“Many schools will have been working under considerable pressure and stress to improve their inspection rating and this may have been at the expense of working in a way that really is in the interest of all children.”

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