Alliance comments on Ofsted's proposals for a new Education Inspection Framework

Neil Leitch, chief executive of the Pre-school Learning Alliance, said:

“We have long called for a shift in the focus of Ofsted inspections away from outcomes and towards the quality of what is being delivered, and so this aspect of today’s proposals does feel like a step in the right direction.

“That said, it’s hard to see how this shift aligns with the DfE’s increasingly outcome-focused approach to early years, not least the impending introduction of revised Early Learning Goals which are likely to focus on narrower, easier-to-measure skills like literacy and numeracy over broader development indicators.

“In fact, it’s difficult to understand where the early years fits into this new framework more generally. Instead, the way today’s announcement has been framed by Ofsted very much suggests that these changes were driven by a desire to inspect schools differently, and it’s unfortunately hard not to feel that early years, and the other areas of the education system, weren’t much more than an afterthought.

“The Common Inspection Framework was introduced for good reason. If Ofsted is going to make significant changes to the inspection system, it should be driven by the needs and concerns of all education providers, including early years, and not simply what will work best for schools.”


For further information or to interview, Neil Leitch, Chief Executive of the Pre-school Learning Alliance, please contact:

Deri Jones

Pre-school Learning Alliance

T: 020 7697 2598



Notes for editors

The Pre-school Learning Alliance is the largest voluntary sector provider of quality affordable childcare and education in England.

Through direct provision and its membership of 14,000 nurseries, sessional pre-schools and parent and toddler groups, the Alliance supports over 800,000 children and their families in England. The Alliance also develops and runs family learning programmes, offers information and advice, runs acclaimed training and accreditation programmes and campaigns to influence early years policy and practice.

For information about the Pre-school Learning Alliance, visit our website: