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Part 4 of, and Schedule 6 to, the 2006 Act set out that a school causing concern is one which is “eligible for intervention”. This is where a:
Performance standards and safety warning notices should be used as an early form of intervention, particularly where standards are unacceptably low and other tools and strategies have not secured improvement.
A performance standards and safety warning notice may be given by a local authority in one of three circumstances. Where:
The definition of what constitutes low standards of performance is set out in section 60 (3) of the 2006 Act. This is where they are low by reference to any one or more of the following:
Cases where schools are performing below the floor standards would be covered by point 1 above. There is a clear expectation that in those cases, where the school has a history of performing below floor, conversion to an academy with a strong sponsor will be the normal route to secure improvement. It should be noted that local authorities are not limited to giving a performance and standards warning notice only to those schools which are persistently below the floor. If standards in the schools need to be challenged for another reason (e.g. there has been a sudden drop in performance or a school consistently performs below the level expected), then a warning notice may be a suitable tool if the local authority believes it meets the criteria set out above.
A school is eligible for intervention and intervention powers may be exercised in the case where a performance standards and safety warning notice has been given and has not been complied with, and where the local authority have also given the school written notice that they propose to exercise one or more of their powers under Part 4 of the 2006 Act.
1 This guidance is not concerned with warning notices given under section 60A of the 2006 only those given under section 60 of the 2006 Act.
If, following an inspection under section 5 of the Education Act 2005, Ofsted considers a school to be inadequate (Grade 4), it will give a judgement that the school requires either 'significant improvement' (described as a school with 'serious weaknesses') or 'special measures', a school that is eligible for intervention. Where a school is eligible for intervention by virtue of this judgement, it is not necessary for the LA to give a warning notice to the school. If the school has already been given a warning notice by a local authority, this judgement means the school is eligible for intervention whether or not the period of compliance in the warning notice has expired or the governing body has made representations or intend to make representations to Ofsted.
There is a clear expectation that in these cases, where the school has been judged by Ofsted to have "serious weaknesses" or require "special measures", conversion to an academy with a strong sponsor will be the normal route to secure improvement.
From September inspectors will make a judgement on LAs’ statements of action. This judgement will be made at the first monitoring inspection of all schools judged to require special measures and those that have been judged to have serious weaknesses (HMI will review the statement of action together with a representative of the LA, the headteacher and Chair of the governing body as part of that first monitoring inspection).
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Information about the types of monitoring inspections carried out in maintained schools.