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An examination of the perceptions of additional inspectors involved in maintained school inspections (post September 2012)

An examination of the perceptions of additional inspectors involved in maintained school inspections (post September 2012)

Okolo-Angus, Ogugua (2017) An examination of the perceptions of additional inspectors involved in maintained school inspections (post September 2012). EdD thesis, University of Greenwich.

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The study undertaken examines the perceptions of Additional Inspectors (AIs) involved in maintained school inspections post September 2012, following revisions to the 1992 Ofsted framework. Ofsted inspectors are now required to modify their inspection practice by making four judgements about the effectiveness of schools as compared to the previous twenty-four judgements required pre-2012. Key themes of accountability together with concerns about ‘game playing’ to survive their inspection experience and the culture of performativity and its impact on practice are examined.

A mixed-method approach based on 41 questionnaire responses and in-depth interviews with 4 Additional Inspectors were used to examine the perceptions and experiences of Additional Inspectors and obtain quantitative and qualitative data. Insider research which is highlighted in chapter 3 enabled access to the participants and is a feature of this study because of the researcher’s role as an experienced Ofsted Inspector with extensive knowledge about Ofsted inspection practice.

Phase one of the study highlighted the concerns that AIs had about procedural inspection issues in addition to the differing levels of accountability that warranted further exploration in phase two. Phase two concluded that inspecting in maintained schools is a complex and exhausting process that highlights issues of self-identity and performativity. The perceived lack of power and increased accountability are significant perceptions of AIs that give rise to ‘game playing’ as part of a performative culture to enable them to survive their inspection experience.

This study concludes that inspecting in maintained schools is a challenging experience for AIs who must cope with the demands of an increased accountability agenda imposed upon them by the inspectorate. AIs engage in social performances to cope with such demands and this has a dramatic effect on both their professional and personal lives. AIs believe that the significant changes to the Ofsted inspection framework post September 2012 has diminished their personal levels of autonomy through the process of inspecting maintained schools and heightened the levels of power and control by the inspectorate.

The original contribution of the thesis is to an under researched area, namely in enabling the AIs’ voices to be heard by examining perceptions of their inspection experience following significant revisions to the Ofsted framework post September 2012. A contribution is made to the existing literature about AI’s social performances from which they have been affected personally and professionally.

Item Type: Thesis (EdD)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Additional Inspectors (AIs); school inspections; Ofsted inspectors;
Subjects: L Education > LB Theory and practice of education
Faculty / Department / Research Group: Faculty of Education, Health & Human Sciences
Faculty of Education, Health & Human Sciences > Department of Education & Community Studies
Last Modified: 05 Apr 2019 15:38
Selected for GREAT 2016: None
Selected for GREAT 2017: None
Selected for GREAT 2018: None
Selected for GREAT 2019: None
Selected for REF2021: None

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