School Improvement Strategy


Monitoring and Risk Assessment


Maintained Schools

Each maintained school will be categorised, using common language, clear criteria and clarity about the support and challenge package that accompanies it. This process ensures that resources are used to support the right schools. The categories can be summarised as:

  • Light Touch: Good and outstanding schools with no known concerns
  • Light Touch +: Schools judged as good or outstanding but recognized that capacity to provide external support may be limited, perhaps due to a new Headteacher or temporary staffing issues, or specific targeted support is needed
  • Support and Challenge: Schools judged by Ofsted to require improvement (RI); schools judged as good or outstanding identified as vulnerable to a decline in Ofsted grading; schools where analysis of performance data places them at serious risk of decline
  • Support and Challenge +: Schools judged by Ofsted to be inadequate or likely to be judged by Ofsted as inadequate at the next inspection or where there are serious and significant other concerns.

Detailed criteria can be found here.

Initially this categorisation will be carried out in phases by the SAfE senior team with representatives from the relevant phase council. Additional information from the LA will contribute to the categorisation.

During the first half of the autumn term, maintained schools will be informed in writing of their initial categorisation and will be invited to submit their own self-evaluation against the criteria which may lead to changes in the school’s categorisation. The self-evaluation will also contribute to identifying where strengths in the school system are and will help schools assist each other in improving performance and driving towards equity and excellence for all.

A school may move category at any time during an academic year leading to an increase or decrease in funded support. In this event the school will be informed in writing.







Senior leaders from SAfE will meet at least annually with representatives of all multi-academy trusts and standalone academies. Where a trust has at least one school identified as meeting the criteria for challenge and support they will meet with the representative termly.

All academies will be invited to submit their own self-evaluation in order to contribute to generating robust insights into real areas of strengths and room for improvement in the educational landscape across Surrey and will help schools assist each other in improving performance and driving towards equity and excellence for all.

"Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other."

John F Kennedy


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