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Ofsted holiday for schools

PUBLISHED: 18:34 31 July 2010 | UPDATED: 15:04 02 August 2010

An elite handful of south Norfolk schools started the summer holidays with the news that they have been declared too good to need an Ofsted inspection in the near future.

An elite handful of south Norfolk schools started the summer holidays with the news that they have been declared too good to need an Ofsted inspection in the near future.

The schools, all rated good or outstanding in their last inspection, have been told by the chief inspector, Christine Gilbert, that they will not get another visit until September 1, 2011, at the earliest.

This includes 20 Norfolk schools, including Hethersett Woodside Infant and Nursery, Manor Field Infant and Nursery in Long Stratton, and Robert Kett Junior School in Wymondham.

As part of the government's drive to ensure that schools with problems are inspected more often, Ofsted is moving towards visiting the best schools no more than once every five years.

All good or outstanding schools are subject to an interim assessment, with the quango's staff studying each school's exam and test results, attendance, complaints made by parents or carers and other “significant issues”.

If problems arise, an Ofsted visit will be arranged. But if all is well, the school will have its next inspection deferred.

In a letter to the parents of each of the 20 Norfolk schools, Mrs Gilbert said: “I am pleased to inform you that our interim assessment shows that the school's performance has been sustained and that we can defer its next full inspection.”

“The next full inspection will not take place any earlier than September 1 2011, unless we receive information in the course of the coming year that causes us to inspect earlier.”

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