Timing of Section 48 (Pikuach) Inspections – Important Changes

18th February 2016

Most headteachers now know that schools judged to be ‘outstanding’ are exempt from future, routine inspection.  However, all schools that were judged ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ at their last Section 48 (Pikuach) inspection must be scheduled for their next Section 48(Pikuach) inspection within 5 school years from end of the school year within which they were last inspected.  For example, if a school was inspected at any time between September 2012 and July 2013, the next inspection would be scheduled during the school year September 2017 and July 2018.

Any school with a Section 48 (Pikuach) inspection judgement that was less than ‘good’ can be scheduled for its next Section 48 (Pikuach) inspection at any point after 3 years from the date of the last Section 48 (Pikuach) inspection, but no later than 5 school years from the end of the school year within which the last inspection took place. For example, if a school was inspected in September 2012 the earliest it should be inspected again is September 2015. The latest date that the inspection could take place would be July 2018.

It is important to note these changes because a number of headteachers are under the impression that an impending Ofsted inspection means an impending S48 (Pikuach) inspection which is not necessarily the case.

Jeffrey Leader, Director