The SIAMS Inspection Process


A new SIAMS Inspection Schedule came into operation in September 2018.   

Self Evaluation 

All schools are expected to maintain a Self-Evaluation file related to the SIAMS Framework. There are several variations of the Self-evaluation form, these are the forms recommended for use by the Diocese: 

SIAMS Self-evaluation Form (2018) | DOCX

SIAMS Excellence Case form | PDF

Academies are normally inspected "as if" they retained their maintained status as VC or VA. However, sponsored academies are sometimes different - it depends on the wording of their Supplemental Fundung Agreement. Please check with Jane Sheat.

Ideally, your self-evaluation audit tool is a working document - updated at regular intervals and populated after consultation with a number of stakeholders. Speak to a member of the team if you would like advice on completing your self-evaluation.

Please remember that the audit tool and other forms are the Inspector's gateway to the effectiveness of your School as a Church School. The audit form should be clear, concise and focus on the impact of the school's Christian vision. 

When will my school have a SIAMS inspection?

Schools judged Outstanding or Good in their last SIAMS will be re-inspected no sooner than the academic year that starts five years after the end of the academic year in which the last inspection took place.

Those judged Satisfactory or Inadequate will be re-inspected no sooner than the academic year that starts three years after the end of the academic year in which the last inspection took place.

The schedule will be constructed locally and approved by the Church of England Education Office.  Schools will receive seven days notice of a SIAMS inspection with a phone call and email confirmation from the DBE office in “week 1” indicating the preferred inspection day which will be no later than Friday of  “week 2”.

Dates between which your school has its last SIAMS

If graded Good or Outstanding your next SIAMS will be in the academic year

If graded Satisfactory your next SIAMS will be in the academic year

Sept 2015 to July 2016

2020 - 2021

2018 - 2019

Sept 2016 to July 2017

2021 - 2022

2019 - 2020

Sept 2017 to July 2018

2022 - 2023

2020 - 2021

Sept 2018 to July 2019

2023 - 2024

2021 - 2022

Sept 2019 to July 2020

2024 - 2025

2022 - 2023

After the phone call

Schools are required to forward to the inspector a copy of their Self-Evaluation Form (SEF) - usually within 24 hours of receiving the notification email. It is helpful if schools also give the inspector an idea of the availability of the various people/groups that are normally seen - Incumbent; Co-ordinators; School Council; Headteacher; Governors, etc.

The inspector will respond within 48 hours with a Pre-Inspection Plan (PIP) which will summarise their interpretation of the SEF and inform the school of specific areas/topics that will be a focus during the inspection. It is likely that a confirmed timetable for the inspection will also accompany the PIP – or follow within a further 24 hours.

On the day of the inspection

On the day itself the inspector will probably interview the Incumbent together with any other members of the local Church community who have specific contact with the school – certainly to include one or more Foundation Governors. They will also expect to interview groups of children, as well as the Headteacher, Chair of Governors and appropriate co-ordinators (CW and RE).

In an Aided school they will expect to see RE lessons in all the Key Stages the school serves.

At the end of the inspection day you can expect verbal feedback from the inspector and should arrange a meeting for this purpose – membership is by agreement with the inspector but could include the Chair, Incumbent, Senior Leadership Team and Foundation Governors.

After the inspection

  • Within 10 working days you will receive a draft report from the inspector (this will have been subject to Quality Assurance checks) and your responsibility is to check it for factual errors – usually within 24 hours. Once returned to the inspector the final report is published very shortly afterwards.
  • Schools are required to circulate the report to their parents – it is seldom more than two pages in length (three for an Aided school) – and to publish it on the school’s website if possible (this within five days of receipt of the final report). The Diocesan Board of Education publishes reports on its website and they are available on the Church of England Education Office website as well.
  • As a follow-up it is good practice to produce a SIAMS Action Plan which can either be incorporated into or sit alongside a school’s OfSTED Action Plan and/or School Development Plan. This is also the time to reflect on the SEF and set in train a schedule of revisions, therefore making it a working document and always up-to-date.
  • The responsibility of paying for the inspection rests with the Diocesan Office and, unless a school has contracted additional work from the inspector (very rare), no fees are payable by the school.

This page was last updated 2 July 2020.