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History and the New Ofsted Framework

With the New Framework being launched a little earlier than the proposed September start date, coordinators will be clamouring to ensure that their various curriculums are up to standard when Ofsted arrive. Here are 3 things to remember when considering History within the New Framework.

1. The curriculum ISN'T changing

If you have been following the guidelines of the 2014 curriculum then the chances are are that your school should be doing fine. Neither the content of the curriculum nor the structure of it are changing, but the way that Ofsted are inspecting and judging is. Focusing more on foundation subjects and questioning leaders will become a common feature of the New Framework, so preparing yourself for this is a necessity.

2. Look carefully at the 3 I's

The 3 I's of the New Framework are the fundamental elements that relate to the curriculum. The 3 I's are: Intent, Implementation and Impact.

Intent: the main crux of this is that the History curriculum within your school challenges every student and doesn't necessarily differentiate, other than for children with SEND. This section also states that the curriculum is coherently planned and sequenced, utilising specialist teaching only when necessary.

Implementation: There are a few key aspects to this section. The first being that leaders provide their colleagues with the support they need to feel comfortable enough to teach outside of their specialist areas.

By doing so, they will hit the second marker, in addressing misconceptions and providing effective feedback and responding to needs without additional differentiation.

Long-term learning is the third aspect and this is something that links nicely with the Intent, in that children build on their previous learning by revisiting certain concepts and providing comparisons with knowledge gained previously. If your curriculum is planned coherently, then this should be evident throughout.

Assessment takes the number four spot and states that all subjects should have effective assessment that is useful and easy to interpret. Assessment in history is crucial in understanding misconceptions and gaining an insight into what the children do and don't know.

Finally, appropriate acquisition of resources should help create useful learning environments. Within History, this could relate to displays of primary source material that is pertinent to topics and lessons, knowledge organisers that help give teachers the contexts for their topics or general resources that allow the children to learn effectively.

Impact: If the Intent and Implementation sections have been planned well, then the Impact should be evident. Children should be able to demonstrate their abilities and show their progressions in their understanding of content, application of skills and the ability to employ enquiry to any-given topic.

3. Be prepared

Auditing your foundation subject, whether it is History or not, will help you gain a clearer picture of how your subject looks across school. Identifying topics, skills, content, resources and teacher confidence will all play a part in assessing where the strengths and areas for development are within your school. Using the Audit resource on my Coordinators Materials page is a great start.

Also, lining up a set of potential enquiries that Ofsted might pursue will help certify that your curriculum is as it should be. Thinking deeper about the reasoning behind your curriculum structure and WHY it is structured that way is key to ensuring that you have a coherent sequence that guarantees opportunities to embed previous learning, provide full curriculum coverage, show progression of skills across key stages and develop children into budding historians.

Meeting the needs of the entire curriculum should have always been the main focus of Ofsted's inspection framework and now it is. Preparing yourself with a clear vision of history across your school will help you demonstrate your command of your subject and prove that History is being taught well throughout.


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