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To say what I really think in an ESTYN (ofsted) parents meeting?

(30 Posts)
piefacedClique Mon 09-Oct-17 12:33:36

Exactly that really... dd school has had a turbulent few years and there have been multiple changes in leadership and long term staff sickness.... ds has gone through periods there of being very unhappy, in a poorly behaved class and being unchallenged by work (think doing maths homework’s now year that he was going independently this time last year). Dh and I are both teachers and at times have taken a back seat however recently have been more proactive in raising concerns we have. There is another acting headteacher in place this year however it is too soon to see if the changes she puts in place are effective. Suddenly school looks very estyn prepped and children (the weekend before they arrive) all have shiny targets in their books despite actually having no idea what his targets are himself! School have known estyn will inevitably be in this year as they are already overdue so aibu to think they should have done this sooner! This week is the estyn visit and we still have big concerns.... so do I sit quietly in the meeting, knowing that in my parents questionnaire I have answered honestly or do I raise my concerns in the meeting? Ive been through 4 inspections as a teacher but don’t know the format of the meetings so have no idea what to expect! We have always been very supportive of the school but it has become increasingly obvious that there have been significant areas which have been overlooked by past leadership team and that school is not doing as well as it could/should. The last thing I would want is to hang the staff (who work exceptionally hard in the whole) out to dry but I would hate for the inspection to come out having missed areas of concern because the last head was an estyn inspector so knows the holes to plug as it were!

Subtlecheese Mon 09-Oct-17 12:36:06

Then you know exactly what to say. There have been problems. That you've noticed recent improvements and the staff are working hard.
It's bad leadership you're describing.

AuntLydia Mon 09-Oct-17 12:38:26

You should absolutely speak up. You can give a nod to the hard work of the teachers and make specific complaints about the leadership team. You owe it to your child and his friends more than you owe keeping quiet to the school/teachers.

PoundsShillingsPence Mon 09-Oct-17 12:42:26

Speak up but keep it factual and to the point, give examples where possible. The meetings are usually quite informal and there will not be any school staff there, although parent governors are allowed to attend (and could report back to head).

MerryMarigold Mon 09-Oct-17 12:43:39

I think if you've been honest in the questionnaire then there's no need to bang on. How many times do you need to say the same thing? It may just create an awful atmosphere, although if the school is as bad as it sounds, there will be other parents doing the job for you.

To me, it just sounds a bit vengeful because you are angry at the school, which is fair enough. But the likely fallout of a bad inspection will be the staff. Surely a trained inspector will know that multiple changes in leadership will have an impact on students?

piefacedClique Mon 09-Oct-17 12:45:55

Thanks both. That’s reassuring.... it’s been obvious in the past that when we’ve raised concerns that’s it’s pissed off staff members. A number of staff are also parents so will I’m sure be at the meeting and I’m certain comments made and who said them will go straight back to the leadership team!

piefacedClique Mon 09-Oct-17 12:50:01

I’m definately not trying to be vengeful MerryMarigold, I just think sometimes pre ta are a little to passive about the standards they expect in a school and am always been a bit nicer nicely about problems. I’ve worked in a school which has had significant intervention from estyn after a visit so I know how tough a bad inspection would be on the staff. I think are right tho, there will be plenty of parents doing that on my behalf!

piefacedClique Mon 09-Oct-17 12:53:24

Awful typos! Apologies 🤦🏼‍♀️

MerryMarigold Mon 09-Oct-17 17:26:09

I guess you can guage how it's going and take it from there. Nod along or intervene if everyone being too kind. Good advice to keep it factual and frankly one useless bit of homework won't cut it. (My ds's school is outstanding and he gets homework -y4- that he can do in 2 secs every single week. I think it's basically to pacify pushy parents but has no impact whatsoever). There must be other worries eg. Attainment, unhappy children, unmotivated staff , with examples.

sharksDen Mon 09-Oct-17 17:50:47

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piefacedClique Mon 09-Oct-17 18:13:47

Wow sharksDen! Thanks for your advice! That’s what I was after by the way not a criticism of my comments which were written on a small phone with a small baby on my lap!

sharksDen Mon 09-Oct-17 18:26:30

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KityGlitr Mon 09-Oct-17 18:31:01

Message deleted by MNHQ as it quotes a deleted post.

sharksDen Mon 09-Oct-17 18:34:06

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bridgetreilly Mon 09-Oct-17 18:37:34

Of course speak up. That's what the meeting is for. Why wouldn't you?

piefacedClique Mon 09-Oct-17 19:26:33

As I thought a third of the attendees were teaching or support staff who have children in the school so the responses were generally positive. There were a number of awkward silences linked to the key questions and a number of parents who gushed their way through the whole thing. I raised a concern which was noted. Most importantly I suppose I was more detailed in the parental questionnaire. There is lots of really good work being done in school but as a previous poster mentioned many probs seem to lie with leadership and management and sadly that was a question which was not part of the agenda.

I have no personal grudge with the school, I along with the other parents want the best for our children and I’ve been very supportive and understand the pressures on teaching staff. I think we’ve all just been very British in the meeting and haven’t wanted to offend!

piefacedClique Mon 09-Oct-17 19:28:24

I’ve not gone in to detail about the ins and outs of my concerns sharksDen because it wasn’t necessary to do so in the context of my question and would have been very outing! Was just after advice.

sharksDen Mon 09-Oct-17 19:32:40

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piefacedClique Mon 09-Oct-17 19:35:18

So nothing constructive to add then?

sharksDen Mon 09-Oct-17 19:42:51

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piefacedClique Mon 09-Oct-17 19:47:50

Who do you suppose I am then?

And what have written which is bitchy? This Coming from the poster who offered nothing productive but instead decided to bitch about the quality of my post as opposed to offering advice?

sharksDen Mon 09-Oct-17 19:52:44

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

piefacedClique Mon 09-Oct-17 19:54:25

🤦🏼‍♀️! Is this a reverse? Thanks for your input tho!

KityGlitr Mon 09-Oct-17 19:56:17

Ignore the troll. A genuine poster wouldn't have dug their heels in quite so desperately when called out on their embarrassing bullshit.

piefacedClique Mon 09-Oct-17 20:00:20

Thanks kityGlitr. I’ve just come back from it feeling deflated and disappointed!

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