September 2016 Update


The Department of Education published an updated version of Keeping Children Safe in Education on 5th September 2016.–2?mc_cid=485ddf377f&mc_eid=741fc3e474

This was revised from the version they published in May 2016. All the changes can be found in Annex H (Pages 71 – 75).

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Ofsted and CQC Local Area Inspection Letters

From May 2016 Ofsted and CQC have been carrying out Local Area Inspections judging the effectiveness of the area in implementing the SEND reforms as set out in the Children and Families Act. Seven outcome letters have now been published.

  • Stoke on Trent
  • Hertfordshire
  • Brighton and Hove
  • Bolton
  • Enfield
  • Gloucestershire
  • Nottinghamshire

They can all be found on the Ofsted website:

Special educational needs in England: January 2016

The statistical information based on the January census data was published in July.  The key messages are:

  • The number of pupils with special educational needs has reduced from 1,301,445 in 2015 to 1,228,785 in 2016
  • 236,805 pupils have a statement of special educational needs or EHC plan. This is an increase of 640 since 2015, but remains equal to 2.8% of the total pupil population
  • 991,980 pupils are on SEN support. This is equal to 11.6% of the total pupil population. This has declined in each of the past six years, falling from 18.3% of pupils in 2010 to 11.6% in 2016


Delayed changes to first aid in the Early Years

In July 2016 the DfE proposed that all newly qualified EYFS staff would be required to hold a paediatric first-aid certificate. In their consultation report and government response they stated that:

Subject to Parliamentary approval, we intend to amend the necessary regulations with a view to them coming into force in September 2016. We also intend that a revised EYFS which reflects the proposed changes will be published shortly alongside the amended regulations”

However, due to ministerial changes this does not to appear to have been given Parliamentary approval yet.

National Autistic Society School Report 2016

The NAS School Report 2016 is based on surveys of around 1,000 parents, carers and children and young people on the autism spectrum. Two years on from the introduction of a new Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) system in England, they wanted to find out whether the new system is meeting their needs.

The survey found that:

  • 74% of parents have not found it easy to get the educational support their child needs
  • 69% of parents said that their child had waited more than a year for support after concerns were first raised – and 16 per cent had waited more than three years
  • While 50% of parents say they’re satisfied with their child’s SEND provision, just 33% are satisfied with health care and 30% with social care
  • 17% of parents say they appealed to the SEND Tribunal against their local authority’s decisions on their child’s education

Ofsted Handbooks

Ofsted have updated key inspection documents for September 2016 but with minimal changes. They have also republished the non-association independent school inspection handbook with minor updates in September 2016. Sean Harford – Ofsted National Director – Education has produced a blog outlining the changes.

Changes to Ofsted’s section 5 School Inspection Handbook include:

  • Updated information about how staff and pupils are now consulted during inspections online
  • Clarification on who inspectors will meet with to inspect governance
  • Added references to inspectors having consideration for governors’ development in the role as part of the effectiveness of school leadership
  • Amendments to grade descriptors to reflect changes to national assessment and accountability measures
  • Regarding pupil outcomes, revision to guidance about inspecting the performance of disadvantaged pupils to take account of the new measures relating to pupil progress

Changes to guidance on section 8 short, monitoring and unannounced behaviour inspections are:

  • A small amendment to reflect the fact that Ofsted inspectors (as distinct from Her Majesty’s Inspectors) may now be asked on occasion to lead section 8 ‘no formal designation’ inspections
  • Details on new monitoring arrangements for schools rated ‘requires improvement’ and schools causing concern

Changes to the non-association independent school inspection handbook include:

  • A paragraph added on page 10 to say that, during the initial telephone call to the school, the lead inspector must find out if the school operates from more than one site, confirm the addresses of each additional premises and inform the relevant regional Senior Her Majesty’s Inspector for independent schools
  • An insertion made to paragraph 119 to clarify that, where there are fewer than five pupils on roll within the early years or post-16 phases, inspectors may choose not to report separately on these phases
  • New paragraphs added under ‘outcomes for pupils’ to reflect the section 5 guidance on disadvantaged pupils
  • Amendments to grade descriptors to reflect the changes in the section 5 handbook

Inspecting safeguarding in early years, education and skills

Ofsted have also revised their Inspecting safeguarding in early years, education and skills document.


What must schools publish on-line?

The DfE have updated its guidance on what maintained schools must publish online

  • The school’s contact details
  • Admission arrangements
  • Information on how to access the school’s latest Ofsted report
  • The school’s most recent KS2 results (Primary)
  • The school’s most recent KS4 results(Secondary)
  • The school’s most recent KS5 results (Secondary)
  • Information on how to access DfE performance data
  • Information on curriculum provision, content and approach
  • Names of any phonics or reading schemes used at KS1 (Primary)
  • Details of pupil premium allocation, its use and impact
  • Behaviour policy
  • Charging and remissions policy
  • The school’s statement of ethos and values
  • A special educational needs (SEN) information report
  • Complaints procedures
  • Details of the PE and sport premium (Primary)
  • Year 7 catch-up premium details (Secondary)
  • Governors’ details
  • Annual accounts for at least the previous two years (Academies)
  • An annual report (Academies)
  • The current memorandum of association (Academies)
  • The trust’s articles of association (Academies)
  • The trust’s funding agreement (Academies)
  • Charity trustees’ and members’ names (Academies)

KS 1 and KS2 Assessment 2017

We are still awaiting the outcome of the second phase of the Rochford Review and the future of       P Scales. It is unlikely that anything will now change this academic year especially as the DfE have recently announced that the interim frameworks for teacher assessment at the end of key stage 1 and 2 which were meant to be for 2016 only have now been extended to 2017.

This also means that the Pre-key stage interim frameworks introduced in 2016 will be used in 2017 as well.