That was the week that was…

Thursday (Ofsted – 4 days)
My day starts, as usual on Thursdays, with a group of wildly enthusiastic primary students. I arrive at my own school at break to be greeted by The News. *They* have called. Well, we were expecting it – bring it on. Am I coming into school at the weekend? Absolutley not. I am the calm, unruffled type you know.

Friday (Ofsted – 3 days)

That can’t have been me that you saw, filling the car with boxes of files. Oh no. I am the calm, unruffled type you know, must have been someone else.

Saturday (Ofsted – 48 hours)
It is my Mum’s birthday, but sadly I am not at her birthday lunch, I am at home, with a lot of folders. I dive into the first box and start marking ICT work that frankly doesn’t need marking, because I did it last week. Then I mark some more ICT work, despite having done that last week too. It appears Ofsted paranoia has set in.

Sunday (Ofsted – 24 hours)

I have caved in and agreed to go to school, since I am team-teaching a class on Monday. We spend longer writing an epic lesson plan than it will take to deliver the actual lesson. I find another box of ICT folders that don’t need marking. I mark them anyway. I return home and write some more lesson plans. I have produced a very impressive stack of paper, if I find a really wobbly table, it might even come in handy…

Monday (Ofsted, day one)
I have my first sighting of an inspector as I arrive at stupidly early o’clock. I greet him cheerily, although frankly I wish he would just disappear. Bizarrely, my wish comes true: I see no inspectors at all in my lessons, although just as I begin to suspect that the whole thing has been an Ofsted hallucination on my part, I do spot an inspector walking down a corridor.

Tuesday (Ofsted, day two)
People keep asking me if I’ve been seen yet. No, not once. I reach the end of Tuesday without having been observed at all. I am the invisible woman.

I decide to stop for the unofficial meeting where we get told how it went. There are cheers and applause for the head when she tells us we are officially ‘Good’. I am very embarrassed when the Paris trip (which hasn’t actually run yet) and my primary teaching (which no-one actually saw) get mentioned. Then I go home and do a load of marking. Yes, it’s *that* time of year again.

Wednesday? Wednesday? Flipping ‘eck, what is Wednesday? It turns out that this week isn’t over yet and I still have to teach actual students. Eek.

It starts snowing. Again.

Some of the very enthusiastic actual students turn up at STEM Club after school to paint their fabulous Escher tiles. I have turned into a knackered zombie. I decide that an early night is in order.

The snow and the grid-locked roads have other plans. It takes me three hours to get home, something I manage only after depositing the car in an insalubrious car park in Dubious Area and walking the last couple of miles. Saint Mr TLC cooks my dinner, overlooks my unspeakable tetchiness and walks back to Dubious Area with me a couple of hours later to retrieve our lonely little car. My multi-school timetable on Thursdays just doesn’t work without it. My early night turns into more of a pumpkin hour sort of thing. Bother.

Thursday and Friday
Well, they happened, apparently.

Anyhoo, I can inform you that sleep is a marvellous thing and there’s a new week ahead. There is fun going forward, so I hear. Bring it on.

7 comments to That was the week that was…

  • Isn’t that always the way – the more you prepare, the less likely they are to observe. And yet “they” know. You see, all that preparation wasn’t in vain. You got a mention! The other thing I find brilliant about OFSTED is the grading. If, at any point, a teacher called pupil’s work “good” it would mean “ok”. However, an OFSTED “good” is really “Bloody good, just of an excellent”. Perhaps they should add the “bloody” in future?

    Anyhoo, well done.

    • Lois (three-legged-cat)

      I like the sound of that. Bloody Good is officially the new Good. How about Utterly Splendid for Outstanding?

      Nominations are open for other categories 🙂

  • They’ll get you next time 😉

    • Lois (three-legged-cat)

      Yes, they probably will, especially since I might get extra lucky if they visit one of our feeder primaries on a day when I teach there. But I’ll not think about that 😛

  • Yorkshire Pudding

    The idea that complete strangers can spend half a week in a school and come up with one of four headline verdicts is absurd. I am sure that in your school there are one or two very poor teachers and some (probably like you!) who are absolutely brilliant, yet they all get the same bland and meaningless verdict – “Good”. Oh whoopy-do we’re good! Bollix!