President of the Family Division, Sir James Munby, has offered guidance
which clarifies what judges can say when speaking to Ofsted staff who conduct inspections of local authority children’s services. Among other things, the guidance outlines when it is and is not appropriate for judges to give Ofsted staff their views. He stresses that it is not appropriate for judges to give individuals feedback on their performance.
Highlights from the guidance include:
- it is appropriate for judges to speak to Ofsted inspectors when discussing the ‘quality of the preparation of public law cases that the local authority brings before the family court’;
- it is not appropriate for judges to give individuals feedback on their performance;
- giving feedback is voluntary and judges may decline to do so.