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Care Inspectorate and Education Scotland Shared Inspection Framework - Collaborative Working Group

The Scottish Government published Education Governance: Next Steps - Empowering Our Teachers, Parents and Communities to Deliver Excellence and Equity for Our Children on 14 June 2017. This outlined a range of reforms designed to help us achieve our shared national vision for children and young people: excellence and equity.

The review made the following key point and recommendation in relation to early learning and childcare inspection:

Some establishments are subject to inspection by both the Care Inspectorate and Education Scotland and while both Inspectorates have adopted a more joined up approach to inspection, respondents to the Governance Review reported that the current process is unsatisfactory, overly bureaucratic and can lead to confusion for parents. We believe that there is more that can be done to bring these two inspection processes more closely together.

The report committed Education Scotland and the Care Inspectorate to further enhance their single shared inspection model for early learning and childcare and ensure that an institution will only be subject to a single inspection per cycle.

Next steps

Both organisations are committed to developing of a single shared inspection framework. Already colleagues from both organisations have a strong track record of working together to inspect services and support improvement for our youngest children which provides us with a strong foundation to take this work forward. 

We have established a "Shared Inspection Framework Collaborate Working Group" which will be co-chaired by Catherine Agnew - Chief Inspector (Children's Services), care Inspectorate and Janie McManus - Assistant Director) , Education Scotland  and will be supported by staff from both organisations.

The working group has been tasked with developing a shared Inspection framework for all early learning and childcare (ELC) and out of school care settings which will be ready for implementation by December 2018.

In the interim period both organisations will continue to work closely through our programme of shared inspections of settings provided funded ELC. The Care Inspectorate will also deliver their programme of inspections including the inspection of all childminding settings whether or not they are providing funded ELC.

Stakeholder Reference Group

An external Stakeholder Reference Group will be established and co-chaired by Kevin Mitchell, Executive Director of Scrutiny & Assurance, Care Inspectorate and

Graeme Logan, HM Chief Inspector (Interim), Education Scotland.  This group will be responsible for providing support and challenge to the working group and provides the ELC and out of school care sectors with an opportunity to contribute to the development of the single shared inspection framework.  This will support our commitment to openness and transparency of our work and a shared ownership of the new framework.

We are at the very early stages of this development and will consult more widely with the sector as the work progresses. 

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