5 November 2020


ISI’s joint working with Ofsted

The Independent Schools Inspectorate is approved by the Secretary of State for Education to inspect independent schools in England.  ISI inspects just over half of all the independent schools in England, and Ofsted inspect the others.  Ofsted is also responsible for the external quality assurance of ISI.

In November 2019 both ISI and Ofsted welcomed a new, collaborative way of working.  In the interests of improving outcomes for all pupils, ISI and Ofsted now work to share best inspection practice, in both safeguarding and educational quality.  In the autumn of 2019 both inspectorates worked together to take action against two failing schools.  On top of this, in early 2020 Ofsted shadowed an ISI inspection and attended a training event, and ISI have attended an Ofsted online training event.

The pandemic and subsequent suspension of routine inspections has meant that some of the planned collaborative working has been postponed.  In the meantime regular meetings and discussions take place between senior staff from both organisations. 

ISI and Ofsted are both wholly committed to forging a strong, productive partnership in order to encourage and sustain improvements in educational outcomes for all pupils.  ISI’s mission is to enable children to be safe, well-educated and to thrive, and strong relationships with expert partners play a critical role in delivering this.