The Diocese of Ely Education Directorate

SIAMS Inspection

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New SIAMS Framework

A new SIAMS Framework will be in place from September 2018.  Briefings for headteachers and governors will take place from November 2017 onwards – dates and venues to follow.


SIAMS stands for the “Statutory Inspection of Anglican and Methodist Schools” and is the  national Church equivalent of Ofsted.  Each Church school or academy in England and Wales  is inspected on a five year cycle under SIAMS.  A Church school which has academised will be inspected as if it were still VA or VC.

For all questions relating to SIAMS, including pre and post inspection support, contact Shirley Hall

The SIAMS inspection process is based on the school’s own self-evaluation and the evidence that supports it. So listening to learners as well as documentary evidence is central to the process.

The overarching question behind SIAMS is, ‘How distinctive and effective is this school as a Church of England School?’ Four key questions are used to approach it:

  • How well does the school, through its distinctive Christian character, meet the needs of all learners?
    What is the impact of collective worship on the school community?
    How effective is the religious education? (This question is for VA schools only)
    How effective are the leadership and management of the school as a Church school

Inspections are carried out by inspectors registered with the National Society and trained by them.   The three  Dioceses of Ely, Norwich and St Edmundsbury and Ipswich (collectively known as ChurchschoolsEast) work together to administer SIAMS across East Anglia . The whole process is regulated by Section 48 of the Education Act 2005 and Inspectors are paid by the DfE via the National Society. The foundation Governors, in particular, have a collective responsibility for the smooth and efficient exercise of the SIAMS process in their own school.

SIAMS Reports are public documents and are posted on both the Diocesan website and that of the National Society. Reports are succinct (two pages only) and include clear evaluation statements, using the original OFSTED terms, outstanding, good, satisfactory or inadequate, in response to each of the key questions.

Inspection is just one mechanism to support school improvement and distinctiveness and should not be approached in isolation. Similarly, self-evaluation is not just a matter of filling in a form, but a way into thinking through from first principles and in practice what it means to be effective and distinctive as a Church School.

The key national documents schools  need to help them through this process in 2017-2018 are:

SIAMS Evaluation Schedule 

Latest SIAMS reports can be found on this website under the school’s name.