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Last reviewed on 9 August 2021
Ref: 12955
School types: All · School phases: All

Be ready for your next section 8 inspection when Ofsted restarts routine inspections in autumn 2021. Here's what happens before, during and after, and what Ofsted will be looking for.

Extended timings for the first inspection following COVID-19

Due to a backlog of inspections caused by coronavirus, Ofsted has extended its inspection intervals for the first inspection after the pandemic.

Normally, you'd receive an inspection under section 8 approximately every 4 years - but this period will be extended by up to 6 terms for the first inspection after the pandemic.

For subsequent inspections, if your school continues to be 'good' or 'outstanding', you'll receive a section 8 inspection approximately 4 years later.

Read more about Ofsted changes for September.

How formerly exempt 'outstanding' schools are inspected

Following the removal of the 'outstanding' exemption, Ofsted will begin carrying out inspections of 'outstanding' schools when routine inspections restart in autumn 2021.

Your school will now receive a section 8 inspection before 1 August 2026 if:

(If your school was last inspected

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