Ofsted warns standards slipping in some schools

By Pete Madeley | Education | Published:

Standards in schools across some areas of the Black Country and Staffordshire have dropped over the past year, Ofsted has warned.

The report reveals huge discrepancies in how schools have fared across the Black Country and Staffordshire

The education watchdog’s annual report into educational performance reveals huge discrepancies in how schools have fared in 2017-18.

It came as Ofsted announced changes to its inspection process from next year, with more of an emphasis on the curriculum rather than exam results.

Across the West Midlands, 84 per cent of all schools were judged in the top two categories of good or outstanding at their most recent inspection, compared with 86 per cent nationally – a fall of one per cent on last year.

Analysis of the figures shows that for inspection outcomes in primary schools, Sandwell and Dudley both dropped four per cent to 84 per cent and 77 per cent respectively, Staffordshire fell three per cent to 86 per cent, and Walsall slipped one per cent to 79 per cent.

Only Wolverhampton saw an improvement over the year, with the number of good or outstanding schools rising two per cent to 81 per cent.

For secondary schools, Walsall went down five points to 74 per cent and Dudley dropped two per cent to 68 per cent.

Wolverhampton saw a four per cent rise in performance to 68 per cent – although the figure still represents the joint lowest number of highly rated schools across the region.

In Sandwell standards increased by two per cent to 72 per cent, while in Staffordshire there was a one per cent rise to 72 per cent.


England saw a one per cent fall in primary inspection outcomes to 87 per cent, and for secondaries the picture remained the same at 75 per cent. A total of 2,200 West Midlands pupils (four per cent) did not progress from Year 10 to Year 11.

Lorna Fitzjohn, Ofsted West Midlands director, said: “Most children in this region have the chance to go to a good nursery, school and then, if they choose, college. And, in our Ofsted annual report, there is a lot of good news.

“It’s particularly pleasing to see significant progress at some schools.

“But it is worrying that in the West Midlands more than 2,000 pupils did not progress from Year 10 to 11.”

Pete Madeley

By Pete Madeley

Political Editor for the Express & Star. Responsible for local and national political stories, opinion, comment and analysis.


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