The schools we inspect pay an annual fee for our inspection services. They pay once a year regardless of whether they are inspected that year. The annual fee covers two routine inspections which together form the inspection framework. These inspections can take place at any time over a six year period. The annual fee also covers any additional inspections necessitated by concerns or regulatory action by the Department for Education (see Different Types of Inspection for more information). It is an important principle that ISI inspected schools pay for the inspection service as a whole, not per inspection, and that the independent sector does not seek to rely on public funding to support this important aspect of the regulatory process.
The annual fee charged to our schools is made up of a flat fee and then a per pupil charge on top of that, so larger schools pay more than smaller ones. We work with our schools to ensure that our fee model is as equitable as possible. The annual fee that we charge schools covers the direct costs of inspection, as well as the core costs relating to the service provided to schools. These include the infrastructure which enables inspections to be scheduled, teams built and all logistical arrangements made; a dedicated safeguarding department; inspector recruitment and training; the development of frameworks; quality assurance processes; a range of ISI services and publications such as the ‘ISI Commentary on the Regulatory Requirements’, the regular ‘Update to Schools’, heads’ inspection induction days, the support desk for inspectors and schools, and consultations.
ISI is a not-for-profit company limited by guarantee and we do not pay any dividends to our members. We do not receive funding from the Department for Education, or any other public body; nor do we receive anything from the Independent Schools Council or the school associations.