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7. HMI, and the kind of work that they now do within OFSTED, has removed the national teams of specialist HMI which were so well-informed about standards in their fields and able to carry out national inspections of particular activities with a high degree of authority. HMI have essential roles as expert judges of standards and quality, and in relation not only to school inspection, but in the broader processes of policy inspection.

know how to assess them. The result is a limited development of dance as an art form. Dance specialists should inspect dance lessons. Nottinghamshire Local Education Authority

Policy Inspection 216.

Inspectors can only comment on what is going on in the school at the time of their visit. While in many ways this is wholly defensible, it does mean that what is inspected can be unrepresentative. OFSTED has come to have an important influence on national educational policy. Yet the national programme of school inspection is not now designed to provide a broad base of evidence on how particular policy initiatives are working out in practice. The absence of such advice can create an information vacuum for policy-makers. Inspection should be able to inform policy-makers, schools and teachers about the state of the education service so as to point to what needs to be done by whom to speed good practice and minimise shortcomings. That requires more iterative inspections, carried out by expert inspectors in relation to specific themes and issues. A particular case is the effect of the current emphasis on the core curriculum on provision for non-core subjects, and the impact on the broader curriculum of the literacy and numeracy hours..

The Whole Curriculum 217.

Effective and appropriate systems of pupil assessment and of school inspection are vital to the quality of education and to raising standards. We see them as of special importance in raising standards in creative and cultural education and in making these functions of education as effective and accountable as the rest. The problems as we see them now derive from the fact that assessment and inspection are not primarily focused on the kinds of development we are advocating. The effects of this are not neutral. The practical effect is to discourage and inhibit creativity in teachers and in students. For example, following the Secretary of Stateテ不 announcement in February 1998, suspending the programmes of study for art, music, PE and humanities in Key Stages 1 Raising Standards

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ken robinson et al 1999_all our futures  

All Our Futures: Creativity, Culture and Education Report to the Secretary of State for Education and Employment the Secretary of State for...

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