Inspecting RE: An examination of OFSTED inspections

The publication of the Religious Education Research Review was greeted positively by many teachers as it appeared to indicate that Religious Education was not only on Ofsted’s radar but potentially fairly high up their list of priorities.

The press release for the publication in May 2021 states,

”The review recognises that there is no single way of constructing and teaching a high-quality RE curriculum. However, it does identify some common features”

This article examines the inspections reports published between 1st May - 14th Oct 2021. We investigate whether inspectors are taking account of the factors identified in the research and if this is improving the potential of inspections to drive up standards in RE.

Members of NATRE will be able to download the full document and read extracts from inspection reports that include comments on the following:

1. Studying the curriculum in depth, knowing more and remembering more

2. A well sequenced curriculum to ensure that pupils learn the knowledge they need for later topics.

3. Planning an ambitious curriculum

4. Collectively enough

5. Adequate curriculum time is given to RE, so that leaders can deliver an ambitious curriculum.

6. Developing pupils’ personal knowledge helps them to relate the content to themselves (for example, their own prior assumptions).

7. There is sufficient training and professional development so that teachers have appropriate subject professional knowledge.

8. The importance of visits and visitors

9. Links to SMSC and Personal Development

10. Generally poor or non-existent provision

11. The importance of subject leadership

Download the full document on this link.

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