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Ofsted

Volume 457: debated on Wednesday 7 March 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills (1) if he will place in the Library copies of the Ofsted staff surveys for (a) 2004 and (b) 2006; (124433)

(2) if he will publish Ofsted’s disciplinary procedures and guidelines on bullying in the workplace;

(3) how much was spent by Ofsted on external press relations and communications advice in each of the last three years; and what the planned expenditure was for the 2007-08 financial year;

(4) how many staff work for Ofsted; and how many left their posts in each of the last three years;

(5) which positions of employment are being advertised by Ofsted.

[holding answer 1 March 2007]: These matters are for Ofsted. HM Chief Inspector, Christine Gilbert, has written to my hon. Friend and copies of her replies have been placed in the Library.

Letter from Christine Gilbert, dated 2 March 2007:

Parliamentary Question Number 124433: Ofsted Staff Survey

Your recent parliamentary question has been passed to me, as Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector, for reply.

You asked whether we would place in the Library copies of the Ofsted staff surveys for 2004 and 2006.

As requested, a copy of the 2004 and 2006 staff surveys have been placed in the Library for your information.

A copy of this reply has been sent to Jim Knight MP, Minister of State for Schools, and will be placed in the Library of both Houses.

Letter from Christine Gilbert, dated 2 March 2007:

Parliamentary Question Number 124435: External Press Relations and Communications Advice

Your recent parliamentary question has been passed to me, as Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector, for reply.

You asked how much was spent by Ofsted on external press relations and communications advice in each of the last three years; and what the planned expenditure was for the 2007-08 financial year.

Ofsted manages external press relations through an in-house press team and since 2005 has made use of services provided by the Government News Network to support regional media enquiries. Through our Corporate Learning and Development team, we also run media training courses. The total cost of these services in 2004-05 and 2005-06 respectively were £309,907 and £330,895.

As we have not yet reached the end of this financial year, we are unable to give final costs for 2006-07, but these will be in the region of £400k. The forecast spend for 2007-08 is £470k. The increase reflects Ofsted’s expanded remit.

A copy of this reply has been sent to Jim Knight MP, Minister of State for Schools, and will be placed in the Library of both Houses.

Letter from Christine Gilbert, dated 2 March 2007:

Parliamentary Question Number 124434: Ofsted’s Disciplinary Procedures and Guidelines on Bullying

Your recent parliamentary question has been passed to me, as Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector, for reply.

As requested, I have enclosed copies of Ofsted’s Disciplinary Policy and Discrimination, Bullying and Harassment Policy for your information.

A copy of this reply has been sent to Jim Knight MP, Minister of State for Schools, and will be placed in the Library of both Houses.

Letter from Christine Gilbert, dated 2 March 2007:

Parliamentary Question Number 124436: Staffing

Your recent parliamentary question has been passed to me, as Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector, for reply.

You asked how many staff work for Ofsted and how many staff left their posts in each of the last three years.

At the end of December 2006, 2190 full time equivalent staff worked for Ofsted.

We have shown the figures in two parts. Each year we have had leavers due to staff turnover but, in addition, during 2005 and 2006 Ofsted undertook a significant restructuring programme entitled ‘Improving Ofsted’. This programme was undertaken to improve business efficiency and reduce our overall running costs. Ofsted closed eight of its twelve offices, resulting in a number of redundancies. We have therefore identified those leavers separately from the rest:

January to December

Normal leavers

Improving Ofsted leavers

Total leavers

2004

291

0

291

2005

344

198

542

2006

285

298

583

A copy of this reply has been sent to Jim Knight MP, Minister of State for Schools, and will be placed in the Library of both Houses.

Letter from Christine Gilbert, dated 2 March 2007:

Parliamentary Question Number 124437: Positions of Employment Currently Being Advertised by Ofsted

Your recent parliamentary question has been passed to me, as Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector, for reply.

You asked which positions of employment are being advertised by Ofsted.

The following positions are currently being advertised on our website (www.ofsted.gov.uk):

Childcare Inspectors (temporary posts), Midlands region

Contact Centre Administrators, National Business Unit, Manchester

The following positions have recently been advertised:

Director, Corporate Services

Director, Children

Director, Learning and Skills

Her Majesty’s Inspectors (HMI) - annual campaign

Administrators, Midlands (8 posts in Education and Children’s Directorate)

Case Officers, Complaints, Investigation and Enforcement, Midlands (5 posts)

The following positions will be advertised shortly:

Deputy Director, Corporate Services

Deputy Director, Children

Deputy Director, Learning and Skills

Deputy Director, Finance

Secondment opportunities for Headteachers/senior managers

Statistician, Post 16 Education team, Research, Analysis and International

Division

Our recruitment activity is slightly higher than normal because of the need to fill essential posts in the run up to the creation of the New Ofsted following the passage of the Education and Inspection Act last year.

A copy of this reply has been sent to Jim Knight MP, Minister of State for Schools, and will be placed in the Library of both Houses.