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Preparing for a visit from Ofsted can feel daunting, but we’ve outlined our top tips for keeping calm and having a smooth inspection to help you on your way. Unfortunately, there isn’t a secret recipe to an Outstanding Ofsted rating, but these tips can help to mentally prepare you for the visit.

First tip

The Chair of governors and the headteacher will normally take control of the planning for the governance part of the inspection. They should be clear about which members of the governing board will be able to go into school for the meeting and how they will get in touch with them on the day.

If you are attending the meeting with Ofsted inspectors, don’t be afraid to take some notes – you don’t have to remember or know everything inside out. Be enthusiastic about the school and always end your points on a positive.

Second tip

The Ofsted inspectors will want to see the evidence of what governors have done to help improve the school. It’s a good idea to have some examples to refer to, such as:

  • Examples of challenging and relevant questions in the minutes from the governing board meetings
  • Reports from link governors which focus on a particular area of school life
  • The monitoring plan which shows that governors are regularly checking in on how the school is doing, particularly in the areas that need to be improved

Third tip

Make sure the school’s website is up to date and includes all the required information and policies. This includes making sure all the names of the governors are up to date and the attendance of all governor meetings are available on the website. Keeping on top of updating the website might seem like a tedious job, but it will save you a lot of work once you get ‘The Call’.

Fourth and final tip

Don’t worry – it’s normal to be nervous about Ofsted coming to inspect your school. Try to be positive and remember that the inspectors are just as human as you.

Governors for Schools wishes you the best of luck with your next Ofsted inspection.