Ofsted took nearly a year to take action after it was notified about a secondary school where safeguarding failures resulted in a girl allegedly being sexually exploited by an older boy, Tes can reveal.
The older boy – who at the time had been charged with the rape of two other girls, and was later convicted – was allowed unsupervised contact with girls in the school, his alleged victim said. Concerns were raised about his relationship with the girl, but the senior leadership team failed to act.
The latest incident follows reports by Tes that revealed “systemic flaws” in Ofsted’s inspection model in relation to peer-on-peer abuse, after it was found to have given clean bills of health to schools responsible for serious safeguarding failures.
John first called Ofsted to raise his concerns about the school in May last year. However, he said it was a “very short frustrating call”, and he was told that Ofsted “only inspected schools, they did not investigate schools”.
He called again about a month later. “I told them what had happened, they just hung up,” he said.
Several weeks later, he called them three times in one day. He was “fobbed off” on the first two occasions. When he called back the third time, he was determined they would listen to him.
He asked to speak to a manager, and when the operator continued to be obstructive, said: “Look, my daughter has been raped in school by a boy convicted of raping two other girls, and I can’t get any answers or any help.”
The inspectorate told him: “The responsibility for the day-to day running of a school and the resolution of individual issues falls to the senior leadership team.
“Ofsted inspectors will only consider the matters in the complaint that relate to our inspection functions. They will not investigate any individual matters.”
At the time, Ofsted was coming under pressure from the Commons Education Select Committee over its inaction in relation to peer-on-peer abuse, and John believes this is one of the reasons why he finally began to make progress.
Read the full harrowing article and Ofsted’s response Ofsted failure over school where pupil rapist ‘groomed’ teenager
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