The requirement to improve | Requires Improvement

“Requires improvement”.  It’s a curious phrase.  Although it’s made of English words, there’s something not-quite-English about the idiom; as if it’s been translated by a computer from a less friendly language.  It’s rather passive-aggressive, with the emphasis on the aggressive.

I doubt that it was used much before 2012, when Ofsted re-badged satisfactory as R.I..  I understand the intention and ambition behind the change.  Five years on, though, I’m increasingly convinced that the label of “Requires Improvement”, as a label that one part of the education system can stick on another part,…

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