Are OFSTED inspectors getting harsher?
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    Default Are OFSTED inspectors getting harsher?

    In their marking?
    I used a CM who was rated good but I don't believe she deserved that grade, dyou think OFSTED inspectors are toughening up now?

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    They are just focussing on different things I think...

    Having said that, I was told by my LEA that my Ofsted inspection was notoriously harsh and she told me that prior to my inspection she hadn't given an outstanding for 2 years, confirmed by my DO. Today I noticed that she has given another setting outstanding .......none in 2 years, 2 in the space of a month.......( no other outstanding has been given in our area since September, as far as my research has found, 1 inadequate, 2 RI and the majority good.)

    Perhaps because the focus is now on teaching and learning and showing progress instead of showing endless paperwork, childminders will be higher graded.

    We are getting graded on what we do best, playing with the children rather than our ability to produce/ copy the correct paperwork.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FloraDora View Post
    They are just focussing on different things I think... Having said that, I was told by my LEA that my Ofsted inspection was notoriously harsh and she told me that prior to my inspection she hadn't given an outstanding for 2 years, confirmed by my DO. Today I noticed that she has given another setting outstanding .......none in 2 years, 2 in the space of a month.......( no other outstanding has been given in our area since September, as far as my research has found, 1 inadequate, 2 RI and the majority good.) Perhaps because the focus is now on teaching and learning and showing progress instead of showing endless paperwork, childminders will be higher graded. We are getting graded on what we do best, playing with the children rather than our ability to produce/ copy the correct paperwork.
    What does "DO" stand for Flora?

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    Quote Originally Posted by mumofone View Post
    What does "DO" stand for Flora?
    District Officer from LEA - also I meant to write inspector, not inspection!

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    Quote Originally Posted by mumofone View Post

    What does "DO" stand for Flora?
    Or development officer from local authority (LA)

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    Quote Originally Posted by FloraDora View Post
    District Officer from LEA - also I meant to write inspector, not inspection!
    Thank you! I keep seeing it on the forum and have been wondering what it means!! :-)

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    Quote Originally Posted by loocyloo View Post
    Or development officer from local authority (LA)
    Great thank you :-) :-)

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    I am also a member of Independent Facebook page and there does seem to be an increase in childminders getting Outstanding for the first time (me included), - I think the inspectors have finally realised that if we "ticking" all the criteria for outstanding it doesn't matter if we are working in a home from home setting, we should still be entitled to the grade.

    I have just had an e-mail from my LA congratulating me on my grading and asking if they can mention it in the next e-bulletin, they said that since Sept - 9 childminders and 2 Nurseries have got Outstanding in inspections in Somerset.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mumofone View Post
    In their marking?
    I used a CM who was rated good but I don't believe she deserved that grade, dyou think OFSTED inspectors are toughening up now?
    Why don't you think she deserved it?
    When someone tells you nothing is impossible, tell them to go slam a revolving door

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    Quote Originally Posted by mumofone View Post
    In their marking?
    I used a CM who was rated good but I don't believe she deserved that grade, dyou think OFSTED inspectors are toughening up now?
    I think that Flora Dora gave a very good reply...it is what they need to focus on now that has changed ...not the useless amount of paperwork that we used to produce...unfortunately some settings still do.

    Inspectors do have an evaluation to 'tick' so what they judge us on is very clear....also we must not forget that the grade they give us has to be checked by Ofsted Quality Assurance...hence the reason we are not allowed to divulge it until confirmed

    Maybe that inspector who never gave outstanding has been put right now....also Ofsted annual statistics show that cms consistently do well in Outstanding grades

    DO....in some LA it meant development officer...not sure why...now most switched to the self appointed title of 'consultants'

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    When my inspector gave me Outstanding she said I couldn't tell me what grade I had until I received it in writing - when I asked if that was in case the "control panel" didn't agree with her grading, she said no, that she had more than enough evidence to support my grade.

    Another childminder recently in my town was given Good, her inspector said she was giving her Outstanding on "welfare" and that she had never awarded that section Outstanding before (she was a relatively new inspector), so that means that she never awarded a full Outstanding to anyone yet - I'm just glad I got my inspector who had been doing the job for many years.

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    When I was inspected she said I could talk about my grade ..but not the content, as the grade was secure but QA may discuss the wording and content with her before passing it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mumofone View Post
    I used a CM who was rated good but I don't believe she deserved that grade,
    What we think someone deserves and what Ofsted actually award are often two very different things!

    I know plenty of childminders who I would say were definitely "good", but then they get graded much lower. And others who you wouldn't leave a dog with who get a much higher grade than anyone would have thought.

    Ofsted gradings are a mystery. It's best not to try and second guess what an inspector might think.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mouse View Post
    What we think someone deserves and what Ofsted actually award are often two very different things!

    I know plenty of childminders who I would say were definitely "good", but then they get graded much lower. And others who you wouldn't leave a dog with who get a much higher grade than anyone would have thought.

    Ofsted gradings are a mystery. It's best not to try and second guess what an inspector might think.
    Unfortunately I know childminders who's day to day practise doesn't appear to be good but because we know when we are being inspected, they prepare well and show themselves in a better light than usual. This is such a shame for their LO's as they are very capable of being a good or better childminder but choose not to be on a regular day, even in front of other childminders at groups!

    I also read very disturbing requests for help and support on basic things on the independent facebook page when some childminders get the call - then read that the childminder has been given a good grading, again upping their practise with support from peers for the day. Some childminders have offered to lend resources for the day too, and playrooms are completely revamped for the visit.
    The inspectors can only judge on what they see on the day and I presume they assume that it is typical of daily enabling environments, resources and practise.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FloraDora View Post

    Some childminders have offered to lend resources for the day too, and playrooms are completely revamped for the visit.
    I have a friend who used to be an inspector when Social Services were in charge. She used to look out for the one black doll that got passed from childminder to childminder when their inspections were due! Some things never change!

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    I used be asked if someone could borrow some of my resources for inspection and I always said no!
    I moved so don't get asked now!
    I will happily lend things that are going to be used for particular activities but not just for inspection!
    Nursery had asked to borrow a particular book and the story bag that went with it, a couple of weeks in advance ... lol ... The week they had it ... ofsted made their appearance!

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    Quote Originally Posted by FloraDora View Post
    When I was inspected she said I could talk about my grade ..but not the content, as the grade was secure but QA may discuss the wording and content with her before passing it.
    Thanks for sharing that info Flora Dora...useful to know

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    Quote Originally Posted by mumofone View Post
    In their marking?
    I used a CM who was rated good but I don't believe she deserved that grade, dyou think OFSTED inspectors are toughening up now?
    Imagine a game of football.

    OK, now imagine a game of football where:-
    • the goalposts keep moving
    • ...........and changing in size
    • you have no idea where the pitch begins and ends
    • the club chairman is paying you to play a different game to the one the referee is running
    • ....and the supporters aren't interested anyway
    • the rules keep changing
    • ......and, if you ever ask the referee for clarification, s/he refuses to even tell you what game you're playing



    You're now beginning to get a rough idea of how arbitrary the inspection process is.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bunyip View Post
    Imagine a game of football. OK, now imagine a game of football where:-[*]the goalposts keep moving[*]...........and changing in size[*]you have no idea where the pitch begins and ends[*]the club chairman is paying you to play a different game to the one the referee is running[*]....and the supporters aren't interested anyway[*]the rules keep changing[*]......and, if you ever ask the referee for clarification, s/he refuses to even tell you what game you're playing You're now beginning to get a rough idea of how arbitrary the inspection process is.
    Lol haha can always count on you bunyip!! :-)

    This is how it really does seem though reading some reports, some seem to be desperately finding a reason not to award someone an outstanding even though their saying their set up is great and then others seem to be awarded good for doing the basics!

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    Quote Originally Posted by mumofone View Post
    Lol haha can always count on you bunyip!! :-)

    This is how it really does seem though reading some reports, some seem to be desperately finding a reason not to award someone an outstanding even though their saying their set up is great and then others seem to be awarded good for doing the basics!
    Oh yes, I forgot to mention....... since they have targets, only so many teams are allowed to win, so I guess the rest have to end up as no-score draws.

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