Post 16 INSET : Preparing for a Deep Dive at Sixth Form

sixth form

“Thank you, you made everything seem less scary”

Richard Stubbs, Head of Maths, Abbey Park School

The Ofsted Ready Sixth Form: Preparing for a Deep Dive

The new Ofsted framework really gives more time to look at areas and subjects in some depth: the now-famous Jacques Cousteau ‘deep dive’. This allows the school time to talk in rich detail about its teaching in different subjects.

What is an Ofsted Deep Dive?

Ofsted deep dives are a key part of the new Ofsted Inspection Framework’s curriculum focus. An Ofsted inspection of any school or college, will now include ‘deep dives’ into particular subjects or areas (e.g. maths ) which Ofsted will choose and inform you of prior to the inspection.

The sixth form is given its own judgement which will contribute to the overall ‘quality of education’ judgement

An Ofsted deep dive is an in-depth examination of a subject by inspectors. It is part of the inspectors requirement to monitor the 3 Is – Intent, Implementation and Impact – of the curriculum.

According to the new framework, the intent behind a deep dive is to “establish a coherent base on quality of education”; so multiple deep dives will give inspectors a connected sample of lessons with which to establish a clearer idea of the overall teaching quality of the school or college.

Arrange for a Mock Deep Dive in your school  or subject area

Contact our Inspection team to arrange a ‘Mentoring Dive’ to reassure your team & allay any fears 


 1 – To clarify the Ofsted expectations
2 – Give time to exploring the progress within subjects and how this is monitored in schools or colleges at sixth form.
3 – To be prepared for a ‘deep dive’ line of enquiry
4 – Plan necessary actions that will enable you self-evaluate with accuracy and approach inspection with confidence

With a renewed focus on the quality of your school curriculum this one day course will look at how judgements will be informed through the evidence available in your school.
Guiding you through questions and lines of enquiry this workshop will help you feel prepared and ready to articulate your approach with clarity and confidence.

Are you deep-diving into sixth form subjects? 

As a subject leader do you know what the new Ofsted framework introduced in September 2019 means for you and your role. There is certainly more emphasis on the curriculum and each individual subject will be under scrutiny.

  • How can you make sure that you are ready?
  • How can you prepare your department/colleagues for inspection?
  • How can you and your team prepare for a deep dive into the curriculum? 

“Each deep dive will typically focus on a sample of four to six subjects, looking at a wide variety of pupils in different year groups, including sixth for ( where available) across that sample.”

Ofsted 2019

The day will give you the time & direction to draw up a personalised plan.

You might also be interested in The Ofsted Ready Leadership Team

or The Ofsted Ready School 

INSET Outline

The Ofsted 2019 Inspection Framework

• Headline changes in the new Ofsted framework
• Unpacking the ‘Quality of Education’ standards
• Intent, Implementation and Impact and Cultural Capital

Your Curriculum

• Progression of knowledge and skills
• Age and stage appropriate learning
• School pedagogy
• Sources of evidence

How judgements are made

• What subject leaders need to know
• Lesson Visits and work scrutiny
• Use of assessment
• Pupil Outcomes

Planning for a deep dive in your school or college

• Sample questions for subject leaders
• Work scrutiny examples
• Planning for accurate self-evaluation

School feedback on this training has been overwhelmingly positive :

“Very well delivered and above & beyond what was advertised! “

Alan Glasgow, HOD IT & Computing, Norton Hill School

“Outstanding – extremely helpful & has built my confidence”

Miranda Rawlinson, HOD History, Pate’s Grammar School

“Really useful for what a deep dive means and what to say to Ofsted”

Justin Jones, HOD English, KLB School

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