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Knowledge, authority and judgement: the changing practices of school inspection in England

Baxter, Jacqueline and Clarke, John (2014). Knowledge, authority and judgement: the changing practices of school inspection in England. Sisyphus Journal of Education, 2(1) pp. 106–127.

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URL: http://revistas.rcaap.pt/sisyphus/issue/view/300
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Abstract

School Inspection involves the construction and mobilisation of particular conceptions of knowledge, judgement and expertise. These constructions change over time and between different inspection regimes. In this paper we explore some of the shifting criteria and practices of inspection that have been visible in the recent development of school inspection in England as organised through the Office for Standards in Education (Ofsted). At stake in these processes are the shifting relationships between different types of knowledge (not least data and observation); the types of expertise and authority understood to be embodied in the inspector; and the forms of judgement that are exercised in inspection. In the work of Ofsted, these changing constructions and mobilisations of knowledge are also linked to the changing practices and criteria used in the evaluation of school performance: most dramatically the reclassification of the evaluation grade of ‘satisfactory’ to ‘requires improvement’. The paper explores the political and governmental pressures that drive changes in the construction and mobilisation of knowledge in school inspection and consider what new problems may arise as a consequence of such changes.

Item Type: Journal Item
Copyright Holders: 2014 The Authors
ISSN: 2182-9640
Project Funding Details:
Funded Project NameProject IDFunding Body
Governing by Inspection: School Inspection and Education Governance in Scotland, England and Sweden (D-09-036-JC)RES-062-23-2241-AESRC
Keywords: evaluation criteria; discourse
Academic Unit/School: Faculty of Business and Law (FBL) > Business > Department for Public Leadership and Social Enterprise
Faculty of Business and Law (FBL) > Business
Faculty of Business and Law (FBL)
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) > Social Sciences and Global Studies > Social Policy and Criminology
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) > Social Sciences and Global Studies
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS)
Item ID: 44064
Depositing User: Jacqueline Baxter
Date Deposited: 20 Aug 2015 10:20
Last Modified: 07 Aug 2019 23:32
URI: http://oro.open.ac.uk/id/eprint/44064
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