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Ofsted publishes new framework for youth work inspection and consults on connexions inspections


The Office for Standards in Education (OFSTED) has published a new Framework for the inspection of youth work and its associated self-assessment schedule.

OFSTED is also consulting on the draft Framework for the inspection of Connexions partnerships - the government funded service designed to support and encourage young people to remain in or return to education and training during their teenage years.

The youth work inspection Framework will be used by Her Majesty’s Inspectors (HMI) from OFSTED when they inspect the 150 local authority youth services in England, at a rate of about 15 each year. Local authority youth services across the country employ over of 25,000 staff, including managers, full-time and part-time youth workers. The total annual budget for youth work was over £256 million last year across the country, although there is a wide variation in the amount that individual authorities choose to spend on services for young people in their areas.

Youth services are usually given about two months notice of inspection. The lead inspector, with a small team, will spend some three days scrutinising documentation provided by the local authority, including the self-assessment schedule, in order to plan the inspection. The inspection itself generally takes place in a single week, during the day and the evening, when the HMI team of between five and nine, will be deployed observing youth work sessions and talking to young people and youth workers about the service. The full report is published about 12 weeks after inspection.

The Department of Education and Skills (DfES) now requires each youth service inspected to produce an action plan in response to the key issues for attention identified in the report. Where a service is judged to be poor, a re-inspection will occur within two years.

The new Framework builds on the 1994 and 1997 versions and is more clearly focused than previously on the effectiveness and efficiency of the provision in meeting the needs and raising the achievement of young people.

The Connexions Service provides a new approach to guiding and supporting all young people during their transition to adulthood and working life. Connexions partnerships are being formed in each of the Local Learning Skills Council areas in order to develop and co-ordinate the local delivery of the Connexions Service. The first 16 partnerships have now been established; the remaining 31 will follow from April 2002. OFSTED has the responsibility under the Learning Skills Act 2000 for the inspection of Connexions which will be carried out by teams of HMI. OFSTED expects to publish a survey report in 2002 highlighting best practice and areas for development from the first 16 partnerships.

Copies of the documents can be downloaded using the following links - the first three are in .pdf format requiring Acrobat Reader, the response form is a MS Word document format:

are being sent to all local authorities.
Copies of:
Those responding on the Connexions consultation draft should send their comments to be received by 31 August 2001 to:
Connexions Response,
2nd floor,
Alexandra House,
33 Kingsway, London WC2B 6SE,

or email

[email protected]


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