Commenting on Ofsted’s Annual Report, published today, Chris Keates, General Secretary of the NASUWT, the largest teachers’ union in the UK, said:

“Sir Michael Wilshaw’s final Annual Report as Chief Inspector of Schools confirms that it is the hard work, dedication and professionalism of teachers and headteachers that is key to delivering high educational standards and improvements, year on year.

“However, the latest Annual Report also confirms that without a clear focus on the need to support the capacity of the system to sustain these improvements, standards of education are being put at risk.

“It is evident from the Chief Inspector’s report that the progress which Ofsted inspectors have observed again this year has been secured often despite Government policy rather than because of it.

“The Chief Inspector is right to send a clear warning about the Government’s obsession with further structural changes as being the way to raise standards for pupils; what matters is creating the conditions in which teachers can focus on teaching and learning, without unnecessary and wasteful distractions.

“The current crisis in the recruitment, retention and morale of the teacher workforce is a further issue on which Ofsted and the NASUWT agree has real potential to undermine the ability of schools to meet the educational needs and entitlements of all children and young people.

“The failure of the Government to ensure that all teachers benefit from attractive pay and conditions of service and a manageable workload is hampering the ability of schools to continue to be world class.

“Ofsted’s Annual Report should serve as a wake-up call to the Government to focus on ensuring the conditions are in place to ensure that all pupils continue to be taught by qualified and committed teachers.”

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