Following the suicide of headteacher Ruth Perry, teachers are calling for a fundamental reform of ‘punitive’ Ofsted inspections
Headteachers are in revolt. The system by which they are judged – Ofsted – is badly in need of reform, they say. Not only has it been downgrading schools for “unfair” reasons, they argue, but “punitive” inspections are placing a devastating personal strain on school leaders, costing them their health, potentially their careers and, in extreme cases, their lives.
This week, a wave of outrage swept through the teaching profession following the death of Ruth Perry. The 53-year-old headteacher at Caversham Primary School in Reading took her own life in January while awaiting an Ofsted report that would downgrade her school from “outstanding” to “inadequate”. Her family said in the past few days that they were in no doubt “Ruth’s death was a direct result of the pressure put on her by the process and outcome of an Ofsted inspection.”