How Ofsted inspects governance

Get to grips with how governance is inspected under the 2019 Ofsted framework, and the role of governors on inspection day.

Last reviewed on 24 August 2022
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School types: All · School phases: All
Ref: 2896
  1. The impact of COVID-19
  2. Governance is inspected as part of ‘leadership and management’
  3. What inspectors are looking for
  4. Evidence inspectors will use
  5. Governors’ role on inspection day
  6. How governance is inspected if you’re in a MAT
  7. Grade descriptors
  8. How to prepare your governors for inspection
  9. Demonstrating governors' impact

The impact of COVID-19

Ofsted will take into account the disruption caused by COVID-19 when making judgements, and inspectors will seek to understand the specific impact of the pandemic on your school community.

References to the pandemic are embedded throughout the handbook. For example, see paragraphs 83 and 91 of the School Inspection Handbook (September 2022).

Governance is inspected as part of ‘leadership and management’

Ofsted inspectors assess governance as part of the overall judgement of 'leadership and management'.

There isn’t a separate judgement or grading for governance, but inspectors will include a section on governance in the inspection report.

What inspectors are looking for

Understand their role and carry it out effectively Make sure the school has a clear vision, ethos and strategic direction Make sure resources are well managed Hold executive leaders (the headteacher or CEO, for example) to account for educational performance