How Can I Find Out EXACTLY What Ofsted

Thinks About Lesson Observations?

You would need to trawl through every Ofsted Inspection Report
for 2014 – well, good news! We’ve done it for you.
We have cut through all the obscure “coded” language
to bring you the most concise and informative summary of report extracts
on the subject of Lesson Observations there is (and it’s free). An easy to read
4 page PDF – fill in the box to the right ->->->->

The Off Sted Code

“A mysterious story of intrigue and hidden messges. Since the dawn of time

providers and colleges have puzzled over its arcane rituals and obscure language.

Watch as we break down the code for you before your very eyes!”

The Off Sted Code

A short video which asks some probing questions –
take a look and see how you score on this Q & A!

Evaluating A Lesson Observation System

Lesson observation system






When evaluating if the Observation Manager lesson observation tool would benefit your company consider the following: 

  1. Is your current teacher observation procedure as streamline and effective as it could be?
  2. Are observer’s judgments aligned to Ofsted lesson observation criteria?
  3. Is your procedure supporting staff to improve their  approaches to teaching and learning?
  4. Can you readily identify good practice?
  5. Do your observation results inform your self assessment?
  6. Can you readily find out e.g how many lessons were graded 1 an 2 in the last 3 months and/or the last date a tutor was observed?
  7. Do you use e-observations that enable judgements to be recorded electronically and automatically collated?
  8. Are the results and action points recorded in such a way they readily provide evidence to external agents of the work you are doing to continually improve your organisation’s teaching and learning?
  9. Have you got an easy to manage Lesson Observation Feedback system?

If the answer to any of these questions is NO then Observation Manager is the answer – How to Buy

For an Overview of Observation Manager (including video) take a look at this link

Why Observation Manager will make a big difference to your organisation


•  Easy to use, low cost, web based shared resource available 24/7 on any device with Internet Access- PC’S , Laptops, iPads, iPhones, Android devices etc.

•  A software solution (hosted by us) that’s as good as tailor-made with judgement criteria customisable by you to meet your company’s specifications and reflect Ofsted requirements.

•  You can rest assured that all Follow Ups are implemented, with Action Points logged to show what’s being done to improve the quality of teaching and learning.

•  Reduces costs – customisable electronic observation proforma to record observation judgements  –  e-observations.  No need to printout unless you want to.  Validation can be by digital signature.

•  Reduce staff time because there is no need for  ‘double entry’ – reports and tutors’ records are automatically updated as criteria grades are entered on the observation proforma.
Read More…

Lesson Observation Criteria

Ofsted lesson observation criteria




“Leaders and managers improve teaching and learning through rigorous performance management and appropriate professional development ”
 [box] To make this judgement, inspectors will evaluate the extent to which:

*** strategies are effective in improving the standard of teaching, learning and assessment

*** leaders and managers review and develop constantly the performance of teachers and trainers through dialogue, coaching, mentoring and support and training

*** systematic and rigorous performance management is effective, including using appropriate procedures for tackling underperformance

*** leaders, governors and supervisory bodies (where appropriate) monitor the quality of the experience provided for learners and their outcomes

Read More…

What Can Be Done About The “Moving Goal Posts” In Observation Best Practice?

Observation of teaching and learningOne thing I think we can all agree on is that in our line of work the ‘goal posts are always moving’.  This is to be expected (and a positive thing) if provision is to improve and what was deemed outstanding practice becomes the ‘norm’ for all.

This is particularly so when we look at the observation of teaching,learning and assessment.  The surprising thing is when you consider that providers have had observation strategies in place and have diligently been carrying out observations for years that Ofsted are now reporting so many weaknesses in this area.

With this in mind it is really worth taking a few minutes to look at the effectiveness of your current observation process.  Having been a provider myself I appreciate how busy you are but a few minutes to reflect will pay dividends.

Consider the following:

  • Does your observation process enable you to understand the performance of your staff so that you can better target and easily monitor their CPD?
  • Is your observation process having an impact on improving learners’ progress and achievements?
  • From your process can you readily identify trends so as to support planning to improve standards of teaching and learning?
  • Does your observation process make it easy to pick out and share good practice?
  • If the answer to all of these questions is YES, then Ofsted will not be making comments like this about you:

‘The process of observing and evaluating teaching and learning is not a key driver in quality improvement.’

‘The findings from the observation of assessment are not used sufficiently well to improve learners’ experience on their programmes.’

‘The observation process has been ineffective in giving tutors and assessors clear guidance on how to improve their delivery.’

‘Observations of teaching, learning and assessment do not identify existing good practice to ensure that it can be shared effectively, or to find common areas for improvement.’

We have just released version 2 of Observation Manager – a time saving, cost effective and comprehensive tool that enables you to make the most of your observations judgements (avoiding the weaknesses mentioned above)

New features include:

  1. Observee’s start date at company
  2. Observee’s qualifications
  3. Risk Banding for observee’s
  4. The ability to plan in multiple observations for an observee
  5. A Good Practice indicator
  6. 3 Good Practice reports
  7. A subcontractor filter
  8. A branch filter
  9. A Good Practice category filter

Click here to download a leaflet