Contact us

FAQs

How can I contact Ofsted?

 There are a number of routes that you can use to get in touch with Ofsted: 

  • email us at enquiries@ofsted.gov.uk
  • send us any questions or comments through the Contact form
  • telephone us: general helpline 0300 123 1231; education or adult skills 0300 123 4234 (8.00am to 6.00pm, Monday to Friday)
  • write to us:

Ofsted
Piccadilly Gate
Store Street
Manchester
M1 2WD

How do journalists contact the press office?

 Journalists can find all of the details about how to get in touch with our press team on the Contacting the press office page.

Where is Ofsted based?

 Ofsted has offices in Bristol, London, Manchester and Nottingham. To see their locations go to the Office locations page.

How can I make a complaint?

For details about how to make a complaint about Ofsted or about any of the services we inspect or regulate as well as information on whistleblowing, go to our How to complain pages.

How do I find school inspection reports?

Please go to the Find an inspection report page. You can then search for inspection reports via:

  • Name, address or URN
  • Distance from your home – simply input your postcode and a radius
  • Region, Local Authority or Constituency
  • Date published 

How often are there uploads to the site?

Reports are uploaded to the website every working day.

How do I find other useful content?

Resources such as publications and guides, good practice case studies, regulation forms and guidance as well as videos and podcasts can be found in the resources section. An advanced search allows you to filter by areas of interest, resource type, date published as well as reference number. Users can also use the search which is located on the top right of every page for a quick way to search for content.

What are the ‘Ref’ numbers in the resources section?

Most resources have a reference number (for example: 110070). If you know this number you can quickly find the resource by searching for it through the sitewide search located on the top right of every page. Please note that sometimes when a resource has a major update then its reference number may be updated too, so an old reference number may not bring back what you are looking for – please try again by searching for the resource by name.

How do I register on ofsted.gov.uk and what are the benefits?

Simply visit and complete the instructions at http://www.ofsted.gov.uk/user. Once registered you can signup to receive email alerts (see next FAQ), newsletters and information tailored to your needs through ‘My Ofsted’ as well as rating and commenting on resources.

How can I receive email alerts?

We offer an email alert system, which you can sign up to online. You can receive daily, weekly or monthly email alerts about:

  • inspection reports – by type of provider (for example – primary schools, adoption support agencies or children's centres) in any local authority area, constituency or region
  • publications
  • Inspection and regulation forms and guides
  • videos and podcasts
  • consultations
  • news.

In addition to email alerts you can also sign up to receive Ofsted News, which is our free online newsletter. To manage your preferences register and then login via www.ofsted.gov.uk/user and select the ‘My Subscriptions’ tab.

Why am I not receiving any alerts?

If you are not receiving any alerts please check that your subscription choices are not empty. You can review and manage your subscription choices within the ‘My Subscriptions’ tab of your profile once you are logged into www.ofsted.gov.uk/user.

Where can I find your latest news releases?

The latest Ofsted news releases can be found on our Latest news page, along with the ability to subscribe to RSS feeds for regular updates.

How can I find out more about Ofsted?

For further information about Ofsted, our role and remit, services we inspect and regulate along with who we work with and report to, go to the About us pages; they also have details about how we are structured and the members of our boards.

Does Ofsted have any vacancies?

For our vacancies, go to the Working for Ofsted page; do check back regularly for updates.

My school (or college) details are incorrect on the Ofsted website – how do I get them changed?

Details such as addresses that appear on a school’s or college’s page on the Ofsted website are supplied by EduBase. EduBase is a register of all compulsory age educational establishments (5–16 years old) as well as further and higher education establishments in England and Wales, which is maintained by the Department for Education.

If you have a query regarding your details, or to request an amendment you can contact EduBase by emailing helpdesk@edubase.education.gov.uk

When will a school's report be available from the school?

A school will receive its report 10 working days after the end of the inspection.

When will a school's report be on the website? 

A school's report should normally be published on the Ofsted website within 15 working days from the end of the inspection.

The latest report is not on the site yet. How do I get a copy in the meantime?

Please contact the school, which is required to produce the report on request. If you do not have a child at the school, the school may charge you for photocopying the report.

Why is the report not on the site, when the school already has it?

The inspection contractor sends the report to the school and to Ofsted. Ofsted's database releases it for upload after 15 working days from the end of inspection.

My school is new. When will it be inspected?

New schools are usually inspected for the first time in their second year. An inspection in the first year is unlikely.

I am looking for childcare; what guidance does Ofsted have to help me choose?

Why is the provider that I am interested in marked as ‘closed’?

There are several possible reasons why a provider has closed.

Common ones for early years and childcare providers are:

  • the provider is no longer required to register with Ofsted, because they are no longer providing childcare that requires registration
  • the provider no longer provides childcare and has resigned their registration
  • the provider’s registration has been cancelled by Ofsted.

For further information go to Registration not required; Information for parents about Ofsted's role in regulating childcare; and Displaying historical information of registered early years and childcare providers on the Ofsted website.

If a school is marked as ‘closed’ on the Ofsted website it may have become an academy. New academies are added to the website monthly. Once the new academy provision is on the website the academy and closed provider will be linked to each other under ‘providers at the same postcode’ on the provider page.

How long does a closed provider stay on the website?

From 15 December 2013 the following conditions apply.

  • A provider that closed prior to 15 December 2013 will remain on the website for three years from the date it closed except where:
    • an early years provider is linked to other early providers and has a complaints summary published: such a provider will remain on the website for five years from the date it closed.
  • A provider that closed after 15 December 2013 will remain on the website for five years from the date it closed.

I want to be a nanny/au pair. Do I need to register? Can I register online?

People who care for children in the child’s own home, like nannies or au pairs, do not usually need to register with Ofsted. However, if you want to you can register on the voluntary part of the Childcare Register. For further information go to the Register as a home childcarer page.

When you are ready you can apply using the Ofsted Online website.

The nursery (or any type of childcare on non-domestic premises) that I am interested in is in a school; does that mean that it is run by the school?

Not necessarily: for example, the nursery may be run by a completely separate organisation which is just renting space from the school. You will need to ask the nursery to explain to you its relationship with the school. The nursery’s registration certificate, which it must display, will also tell you the name of the organisation which is providing the childcare.

Please note that the school may have a nursery class; this will be separate from the nursery. The children in the nursery class will be pupils at the school; the children in the nursery will not.

What information is in the ‘View associated providers’ field?

There are two types of ‘View associated providers’ field.

  • Early years and childcare providers To find out how we use the field for these providers go to the Linking early years providers on our website page.
  • Children’s centres We inspect children's centres on their own and/or as part of a children's centre group. If a children's centre has been inspected on its own, the inspection report will be on its page. If it has been inspected as part of a children's centre group there will be a 'View associated providers' field with a link to the group. The group inspection report will list the member centres at the time of the inspection. Please note that the children's centre group inspection report may be more recent. For further information on children’s centre inspections go to the How we inspect children's centres page and the Children's centre inspections page.

What is the Freedom of Information Act 2000?

The Freedom of Information Act 2000 is a law affecting all public sector organisations. It came into force on 1 January 2005. It gives greater access to information held by all public organisations, local and central government, including Ofsted, and lets you find out about what we do, how we arrive at decisions and how we spend public money. For further information go to our FOI policy.

Does Ofsted still inspect learning and skills provision in prisons and young offender institutions?

Yes but we no longer publish separate inspection reports on our website. Since January 2012 our findings will be in the purposeful activity section of the report from Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Prisons (HMP). HMP reports are on the Ministry of Justice website.

Annual Report 2012/13

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