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SCHOOLS STANDARDS MINISTER BACKS OFSTED REPORT

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Estelle Morris, the schools standards minister, has backed up views expressed in an Ofsted report on the performanc...
Estelle Morris, the schools standards minister, has backed up views expressed in an Ofsted report on the performance of local education authorities following the inspectorate's inspections of 44 authorities, reports The Guardian (p7).

The report, presented yesterday by Chris Woodhead, chief inspector of schools, said that 40% of LEAs had 'more weaknesses than strengths' but also questioned whether councils had any impact on school standards at all (see LGCnet 27 June, OFSTED CONFERENCE WILL REVIEW THE CAPACITY OF LEAS).

Ms Morris said the disparity in delivery by LEAs was not acceptable. 'LEAs must adapt to meet the demands of the changing world and not seek to control schools,' he said.

But Doug McAvoy, general secretary of the National Union of Teachers, said: 'Ofsted's job is to evaluate but yet again it is overstepping the mark and making recommendations in the political arena.'
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