Schools facing more frequent inspections

| 02/07/2018 | 18 Comments

(CNS): All local schools are to be inspected every two years going forward instead of every four, as stipulated in the the Education Law, after the Education Council, Education Minister Juliana O’Connor-Connolly and the Office of Education Standards decided to increase the regularity of inspections to ensure that a high standard is achieved and consistently maintained by all local educational institutions. With education still in the spotlight and pressure mounting on schools to improve their performance, the new council, made up of private sector as well as education officials, believes there should be a more rigorous inspection regime.

In May 2018, the Cabinet approved an increase to the budget of the Office of Education Standards by CI$260,000. Officials said this will be used to support the implementation of the two-year cycle from September 2018, as well as increase the number of island-based inspectors who will contribute to the regular inspections of educational institutions.

Education Council Chair Dan Scott said the law requires schools to be inspected at least once every four years, but in an effort to strengthen education provision across both public and private educational institutions, it should be more frequent.

“The council believes that a more rigorous inspection cycle will help ensure students are thriving and achieving the necessary academics and technical and vocational education and training (TVET) in order for them to access tertiary education and the world of work,” Scott stated in a release from the education ministry.

“The inspections will hold the institutions accountable and help highlight the strengths and challenges of our education system. This is just one way the Education Council is actively working toward enhancing the quality of the education received in the Cayman Islands,” he added.

Based on the new inspection standards, schools’ performance will be examined in six key areas: students’ achievement; personal and social development; the quality of teaching; the curriculum; leadership; and health, safety and support.

All educational institutions, from early childhood to the Cayman Islands Further Education Centre, both private and public, will be inspected at least once in the period between September 2018 and June 2020. This change means that there will be 25 educational institutions inspected between September 2018 and June 2019 and a further 25 in the following academic year.

“I am pleased that my fellow Cabinet members felt this change was in the country’s best interest and have agreed to provide the Office of Education Standards the additional support needed to complete the inspections within the recommended two-year cycle,” O’Connor-Connolly said. “I think it is important that students are benefitting from a world-class education and our country’s educational institutions are rich with opportunities for students to maximise their God-given potential,” she added.

Director for Education Standards Peter Carpenter said research had shown that inspections help schools’ improvement, and effective collaboration between inspection and school leadership can radically transform student outcomes.

“It is notable that many of our schools, particularly in the private sector, have not been inspected for a number of years,” he said. “A two-year cycle will offer more regular opportunities for teachers and school leaders to receive advice and support from educational professionals helping to steer our schools toward improved standards and better outcomes for our students.”

Once completed, the inspection reports will be published in full by the Office of Education Standards and posted on the Portfolio of the Civil Service website.

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Comments (18)

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  1. RICK says:

    Caymanian created a monster where schools are concerned .
    It’s is known that the goverment has put Caymanians at a disadvantage but barring expats kids to private school which will always produce far better productive young folk.
    Meanwhile Caymanian kids are left behind

  2. Anonymous says:

    My niece is a school teacher here in the U.K and the behaviour of a lot of these children is appalling. In fact downright disgraceful! They obviously haven’t been brought up but dragged up! They curse the teachers using the “F” word and even be known to physically assault them. It’s no good me being a teacher because they’d fire me the first week because I would not tolerate such abusive behaviour from my own let alone any other child. The biggest mistake they made was getting rid of the cane. We were terrified of teachers when I was in school and held total respect for them. If not, we’d know the outcome. The boys would have the cane across their knuckles and the girls would have a trainer shoe across their bottoms. I know as I had a few across my bottom. Did it do me any harm? No! It taught me to respect my elders and certainly behave myself. If I went home and complained that I had my behind tanned i’d Have another tanning then for misbehaving in school. I take my hat off to all teachers they certainly have their work cut out with these students of today. I also understand the frustration of teachers with so much cut backs from Government. You need to invest in schools and enable students to have the best possible education and training. If not, we know the route they are going down.
    Invest CIG in the Mash Team and education and don’t forget a Construction Training College. These children are this islands future. Their education is paramount. Let’s get this island something to be proud of with very little crime once again.

  3. Teacha II says:

    Here’s a suggestion… Let the Inspectors, the Experts, show everyone how to get the job done, not for a day, not for a month, but for a whole year. Let them put their money where their mouths are. Give the inspectors the worst classes and parents that the Cayman Islands elementary and secondary schools have to offer, and invite teachers from all across the Islands to observe the Inspectors in action, to see “best practices” being put to use, to see how they deal with violent, rude ignorant and unmotivated parents and students.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Are teachers ever consulted on these imitatives,or are they treated as cheap labour with no voice. It would be interesting to find out if this additional inspection regime was ever shared with the infamous “Teacher Forum”. The Teacher forum an Education Department managed talk shop meant to create a false impression that teachers are consulted. Mrs Rodrigues created this when teachers asked for a voice. LoL
    Until teachers are given a voice that can influence policy change they will continue to wonder what the hell is going on with the smoke and mirrors, education system. No increments, virtual imprisonment and scrutiny and interrogation on entry to a building, lunch times and bathroom times are only on paper, they are not real, parents making demands on just about everything, then failing calling the ministry. Sorry teachers, you don’t have any voice.
    Thanks for this open forum so the whole world can see. If for any reason you don’t believe me, ask a public school teacher.

    • Anonymous says:

      A teacher needs to set the standards of their classroom on day one and run the room with consistent, but fair rules. I was an inner city high school teacher for over two decades and set the tone on day one and never had students swearing in class at me or others. Respect needs to be taught and shown. This was from 1990-2014. I am still in the classroom ( in another district) and still demand respect and give respect and have no cussing students or poor behavior.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Where is succession planning. We are not in control in key areas starting at the school level.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Office of Education: Inspects Schools…*
    “They look like they aren’t functioning well..”
    Action: ………… ? ………. leaves.*

  7. Educator says:

    Now they need to resurrect Mary Rodrigues to do the job she was trained for but never allowed to do.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Another attempt to improve education by inspection. More pressure on poor teachers to fix societal problems in Cayman. Teachers are the most scrutinised group of public servants worldwide with very little sympathy from the public. Teachers are pressured to improve teaching and learning with reduced resources and relevant training, at the same time they have to deal with “Inclusion” , the introduction of significantly disturbed behaviourally challenged students in the classroom and parents who want, as all parents do, the best outcomes for their kids.
    Tell me why would a sane person submit themselves to such abuse? That’s what you get.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Just like the Cayman Islands National Youth Policy, this is another BS. They have no slightest idea what to do with the dismal state of education.
    One thing is to know how to pave driveways, another is to how to bring education system to that of the best in the world.

    • Anonymous says:

      You have to hire the best teachers and pay them a decent salary.

      • Anonymous says:

        The strategy was to hire good teachers from 1st world countries, use their friends from third world countries to steal their ideas, and then make-up excuses to fire 1st world teachers.

        You can’t fix stupid and you cant fix stupider from trying to fix stupid.

        • Anonymous says:

          if that was the strategy then all they got was some free loading so called ‘1st world’ teachers who saw Cayman as a nice vacation spot until they’re ready to move to another exotic locale with their padded resume of things they’ve never done.

          • Anonymous says:

            Yeah, I think you just hate expats a little too much.

          • FTCST says:

            Ignorant Local who has not yet learned that it is best to keep silent and appear The Fool rather than open the mouth and remove all doubt. Thank you for your contribution!


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