Monday, 18 October 2010

ICT guidance for Ofsted inspectors

It is important to note that this guidance is intended only to inform the judgements made by specialist inspectors carrying out subject survey visits. It is not for use on Section 5 whole-school inspections. The statements copied below refer to what is considered to be Outstanding practice. If you are interested in the other ICT statements or other subject guidance notes click here.
This advice was published 30 September 2010.

Achievement in ICT

Pupils show exceptional independence and discernment in their use of ICT. They are able to think for themselves and take the initiative in, for example, asking questions, carrying out their own investigations and in working constructively with others. They show significant levels of originality, imagination or creativity in their understanding and skills within the subject. Appropriate to their age and ability, they make highly effective use of a wide range of equipment and software. Their knowledge and understanding of how to keep themselves safe when using new technologies is extremely thorough and comprehensive. They are highly enthusiastic about using ICT.

Quality of teaching in ICT

Teachers of ICT communicate high expectations, enthusiasm and passion about their subject to pupils. They have a high level of confidence and expertise, both in terms of their specialist knowledge and technical skills and their understanding of effective learning in the subject. As a result, they use a very wide range of innovative and imaginative resources and teaching strategies to stimulate pupils’ active participation in their learning and secure outstanding progress across all aspects of the subject.

The Curriculum in ICT

The imaginative and stimulating subject curriculum is skilfully designed to match to the full range of pupils’ needs and to ensure highly effective continuity and progression in their learning. All strands of the statutory ICT National Curriculum are covered extremely well for all pupils, in ICT lessons or in a planned and monitored way across the school curriculum. Pupils are able to use their ICT skills in realistic and challenging situations. Excellent links are forged with other agencies and the wider community to provide a wide range of enrichment activities to promote pupils’ learning and engagement with the subject. Students in KS4 have access to a wide range of appropriate ICT qualifications, including vocational options.

Effectiveness of Leadership and Management of ICT

Leadership is informed by a high level of subject expertise and vision. There is a strong track record of innovation. Subject reviews, self-evaluation and improvement planning are well-informed by current best practice in the subject and in education generally. Subject leadership inspires confidence and whole-hearted commitment from pupils and colleagues. There are effective strategies to delegate subject responsibilities where appropriate and to share good practice and secure high quality professional development in the subject. The subject has a very high profile in the life of the school and is at the cutting edge of initiatives within the school. Access to ICT equipment is outstanding, and the school is likely to have promoted the use of mobile technologies. The school has a virtual learning environment (VLE), which gives pupils and staff very good access to their work and to the school’s learning resources at all times, and has a significant impact on pupils’ achievement.

Overall effectiveness in ICT

Overall effectiveness in the subject is likely to be outstanding when:
Achievement in the subject is outstanding, or achievement is good and outstanding leadership and management underpin the capacity for sustained improvement in the subject. At least one, of teaching or the curriculum in the subject, is outstanding, and neither is less than good.

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