Ofsted: mythbusters every teacher and leader need to know

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10 May 2016
ATL's approach of debate not demand has secured an official memo from Ofsted setting out a list of paperwork and practices which inspectors DO NOT require schools to provide as part of the inspection process.

Read the Ofsted mythbuster memo here.

The memo confirms Ofsted does not:

  • require the presentation of individual lesson plans
  • specify a single format for lesson planning
  • expect to see extensive written dialogue in exercise books.

There is a common understanding that not everything you do needs to be written down.

FE and skills

Ofsted has published a similar mythbuster for FE and skills providers.


Through your dialogue with ATL at summer conferences, surveys and responses to our Shape Education postcards, you told us that workload linked to preparing for Ofsted caused the most significant stress in your working life.

ATL wants a confident, empowered workforce which actively participates in whole school planning. We want you to be offered different levels of support relevant to the different stages of your career. Teacher assessment should be proportionate and part of a collaborative process to support effective teaching and learning. The ability to exercise your professional judgement with confidence is essential for your pupils' education.

You can use the Ofsted memo as a means of starting a professional dialogue with your colleagues – speak to your ATL rep about how that dialogue might be best facilitated in your staffroom.

ATL's work on inspection

Should you have any feedback about this mythbuster memo and how it is – or isn't – being used in your workplace, please contact ATL with your thoughts and experiences.

ATL has led the way in calling for fairer, more effective inspection. You can read more about ATL's work and campaign here.

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