Headlines: March 8th, 2001

The Office for Standards in Education (OFSTED) and the new Adult Learning Inspectorate (ALI) have issued the proposed Common Inspection Framework for inspecting post-16 non-higher education and training.The framework intends to set out the foundations for new joint inspections, setting out descriptions of good practice in education and training that inspectors should be looking out for.

The framework attempts to recognise good practice, regardless of the setting for a very wide range of learning circumstances, such as in college or in the workplace.

The framework will be used by both inspectorates from 1 April 2001 for inspections of sixth form colleges, further education colleges, work-based learning, the New Deal, adult and community learning and the University for Industry. The role of the joint inspections is set out in Part III of the Learning and Skills Act 2000, the legislation which also set up the ALI.

School sixth forms are not covered under the new legislation. But in order to harmonise the inspection of sixth forms and colleges as closely as possible, school inspections will in future include a closer focus on sixth forms.

The main section of the framework reveals the evaluation requirements that apply to the inspection of an individual provider, with inspectors asked to consider such questions as:

How well do learners achieve? How effective are teaching, training and learning? How are achievement and learning affected by resources? and, How effective are the assessment and monitoring of learning?

The framework can be found at www.ali.gov.uk/documents/CIF-FINAL.pdf

OFSTED recently announced the first FE colleges to be inspected under the new framework next month. They are: Teesside Tertiary College, Middlesbrough; Redbridge College, Romford; and Brooklands College, Weybridge.