Jump to content
Home
Forum
Join Us
Articles
About Us
Tapestry

Unbelievable Ofsted Key Issue


Guest
 Share

Recommended Posts

We have just been inspected and one of the FS team was observing a group of children and writing down the learning/interactions etc. Now have a key issue of "staff need to use questioning more to develop child initiated learning". :o Tried my utmost to explain that actually it is crucially to not intervene and question all the time and that actually taking a total back seat is a very effective and essential way of looking at learning and planning future steps etc etc blah blah blah but to no avail. Am furious!!! Feel so upset when have spent so much time developing this practice and so passionately believe in it. There are loads of things we are working on to develop and would have been quite happy for one of those to be a key issue but for a fundamental part of your practice to be challenged - what is the world coming to????????

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's really aggravating when they won't listen to the rationale behind what we do, isn't it! Mine was to use more opportunities to encourage calculation! That was because I didn't ask a child to count how many bobbins she'd threaded, when actually the fact that she'd manipulated was much more important! We know she can count, and it really isn't necessary to 'spoil' every WOW moment with mundanities like that!

Edited by Cait
Link to comment
Share on other sites

It is the fact that the philosophy is not understood is what scares me. Your example is the same Cait. Is so damaging for us and the children. Thank god I have a fab HT, DHT, chair of Governors and SIP who appreciate what am doing and why!!!!! Would be a total nightmare if I worked somewhere where they agreed with the inspectors!!!!!!!!!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is why so many of us are frustrated and confused because their are so many different opinions. I agree totally with what you are trying to achieve and this is what I try to do but I sometimes question myself because of pressure from mangement and parents. I have parents who are really keen on play based learning but at the same time are asking how well their are doing at reading, writing and numeracy. One member of staff who asks what is the objective for that?? and we would do nothing else except assessment if she had her way.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

MCK how really awful for you. :o

Can you find out the experience of the inspector before the draft report and then if you see they have no EY experience you can appeal as this jusgement goes against some of the fundemental principles of the EYFS!

Edited by Guest
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I just thought I would add a comment from our recent Ofsted report

 

" Staff are very good at entering into the spirit of play with children but also have the skill of standing back and observing giving children time to learn at their own pace."

 

You cant win can you

 

Our overall report was excellent with no major issues - Got good across the board which didnt really reflect the written report.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

"staff need to use questioning more to develop child initiated learning".

 

We had the same - I wonder whether it was the same inspector?

 

I really believe (having been PGCE trained specifically for the EYFS) that OFSTED are not yet up to date with the current thinking and that they have a lot of catching up to do!!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It would be much better for us if they all had EYPS and then we could truly value their opinions! How galling to have EYPS and STILL be marked like this by Ofsted!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It would be much better for us if they all had EYPS and then we could truly value their opinions!

You lining up my next challenge, Cait? :o

 

MCK: what does your head teacher feel about this? Do you think an appeal is likely?

 

Maz

Link to comment
Share on other sites

From FAQ in the OFSTED website

 

13. What is meant by the terms ‘child-initiated’ and ‘adult-led’?

 

An activity is child-initiated when the child engages in it by choice using the resources that are available, or when a child takes ownership of an activity provided by adults by changing its focus. Adults may capitalise on these interests by providing further resources and by engaging in the activity with the child/children to observe and assess the learning that is taking place.

 

An adult-led activity has a specific focus and is planned by the adult to encourage a particular aspect of learning, to discuss a particular topic or to provide an opportunity to learn a particular skill. The adult may introduce the material, skill or idea, initiate the activity, and may direct elements of the learning. However, once introduced the activity may provide an opportunity for children to practise on their own or to modify it.

 

My bold but given this I reall do think you have a case to appeal!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi there MCK. It is annoying when an inspector either doesn't share your passion or just doesn't 'get' what you are dong (or not doing). Ive been on the receiving end of the worst and the best experience of OFSTED and as others have said, so much does depend on the person.

 

But, just to put an alternative perspective too. Your inspector doesnt know you, or your setting. They will comment on what they see on the day, and will make judgements based on that. Perhpas at the time you were being observed, you (or your colleagues) were, as you say, sitting back and consciously NOT intervening but what the inspector might have seen was practitioners not interacting, therfore concluding that an opportunity for shared sustained thinking was possibly missed. Questioning (sensitive, open and appropriate of course) IS an important part of our practice, and perhaps what the inspector saw at that moment didnt reflect that.

 

Obviously I cant possibly know if this is the case or not as I wasnt there either but it is worth sometimes stepping back and seeing 'what the inspector sees' just for a moment. They dont see the everyday practice that we are passionate about, they see a snapshot, a moment in time, and that inevitably means that sometimes they WONT actually SEE something and will feel the need to comment on it.

 

Although you feel that the comment was unjustified, it may give you and your colleagues an opportunity to reflect on when and how you do use questioning in your setting. So when the frustration subsides a bit, can you turn it into a positive?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi MCK,

 

I can only sympathise, it is sooooo frustrating when you know you are doing something that works so well that you are passionate about and an OFSTED inspector comes in and judges without listening to justification.

I felt exactly the same last September when I had my OFSTED, however the inspector was absolutely OBSESSED with the entry data since the last inspection and that was the only thing I got questioned on despite only filling in 1 years worth, I subsquently discovered inspectors are not even supposed to look at entry data now AGHHHH! So frustrating!

You are not alone, but at least as you say it is a lot easier when you have a senior support network :) x

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi there MCK. It is annoying when an inspector either doesn't share your passion or just doesn't 'get' what you are dong (or not doing). Ive been on the receiving end of the worst and the best experience of OFSTED and as others have said, so much does depend on the person.

 

But, just to put an alternative perspective too. Your inspector doesnt know you, or your setting. They will comment on what they see on the day, and will make judgements based on that. Perhpas at the time you were being observed, you (or your colleagues) were, as you say, sitting back and consciously NOT intervening but what the inspector might have seen was practitioners not interacting, therfore concluding that an opportunity for shared sustained thinking was possibly missed. Questioning (sensitive, open and appropriate of course) IS an important part of our practice, and perhaps what the inspector saw at that moment didnt reflect that.

 

Obviously I cant possibly know if this is the case or not as I wasnt there either but it is worth sometimes stepping back and seeing 'what the inspector sees' just for a moment. They dont see the everyday practice that we are passionate about, they see a snapshot, a moment in time, and that inevitably means that sometimes they WONT actually SEE something and will feel the need to comment on it.

 

Although you feel that the comment was unjustified, it may give you and your colleagues an opportunity to reflect on when and how you do use questioning in your setting. So when the frustration subsides a bit, can you turn it into a positive?

 

I totally see what you mean Mundia but I did have the conversation afterwards about differnet ways to observe and that both were equally important in our practice. I am in no doubt at all that the use of questioning is not an issue at all in FS in our school and was prepared for all sorts of other things to be raised and would hold my hands up and say - yes, we need to work on x y and z. We are not outstanding and am not saying at all that we are anywhere near yet but we have a well founded ethos and principles and feel betrayed about what has happened having spent a long time developing good observational practice. It feels wrong that because something is seen and perceived to be one thing that the professional discussion afterwards is of no influence. Inspector could have come back and witnessed the other way of observing at another time. I can not bear the thought of parents reading the report and thinking we are not much good.

 

We are awaiting the wording in the draft report .....

Link to comment
Share on other sites

From FAQ in the OFSTED website

 

13. What is meant by the terms ‘child-initiated’ and ‘adult-led’?

 

An activity is child-initiated when the child engages in it by choice using the resources that are available, or when a child takes ownership of an activity provided by adults by changing its focus. Adults may capitalise on these interests by providing further resources and by engaging in the activity with the child/children to observe and assess the learning that is taking place.

 

An adult-led activity has a specific focus and is planned by the adult to encourage a particular aspect of learning, to discuss a particular topic or to provide an opportunity to learn a particular skill. The adult may introduce the material, skill or idea, initiate the activity, and may direct elements of the learning. However, once introduced the activity may provide an opportunity for children to practise on their own or to modify it.

 

My bold but given this I reall do think you have a case to appeal!

 

Can I have the link for this quote please? Am hunting on ofsted site but am lost!!!!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

MCK you have pm if my reply worked - still new to that part!

 

 

Just thought others may find this interesting, you really have to dig deep on the Ofsted website for documents

 

http://www.ofsted.gov.uk/Ofsted-home/Forms...-September-2005

 

scroll down and you will find Feb guidance

 

This is the link for FAQ

 

http://www.ofsted.gov.uk/Ofsted-home/Forms...asked-questions

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I too really feel for you. I really worry about this "what we see on the day" attitude that Ofsted have. From your experience (and mine too) it shows that even if you explain yourself to your inspector your report can still show an unrealistic image of your setting. My inspector was very impressed that a child independently got a tissue, wiped his nose and put it in the bin and I was comended for this in my report - if she had come the following day she would have seen a child snot into her hnd and wipe it on mytrousers :o what a load of ******** it all is.

Like Cait I was told that "although children can count beyond 10 they cannot relate number to objects" She had asked 2 children - obsessed with being big and big numbers at the time - how many babies were in the puzzle they had just completed and of course they both went "1234. 10, 150, 200" etc - therefore she deemed from that snapshot moment that children in my setting cannot count objects and this is on my report.

I wished I'd appealed at the time - I really would advise you too otherwise it will gall you for teh next 3 yrs that you ahev an innaccuracy on your report

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue. (Privacy Policy)