Ofsted – What Hubs Must Do


Music Hubs should not be simply asking schools what they need, or offering services that schools can take or leave. They must act as champions, leaders and expert partners, who can arrange systematic, helpful and challenging conversations with each school about the quality of the music education and how the school and hub can work together to improve it.

By April 2014

Music Hubs should:

  • prepare a school music education plan that enables them to:
  • promote themselves with schools as confident, expert leaders of music education in their areas, not simply as providers of services
  • expect and secure that all schools engage with them and the National Plan for Music Education
  • have regular supportive, challenging conversations with each of their schools about the quality of music education for all pupils in that school
  • support all schools in improving the music education they provide, especially in class lessons, and support them in evaluating it robustly
  • offer expert training and consultancy to schools, which supports school leaders and staff in understanding what musical learning, and good progress by pupils in music, are like
  • ensure that their own staff and partners are well trained and ready to do this work
  • spend a suitable proportion of their staff’s time on working with school leaders strategically, alongside their work in teaching pupils directly
  • publicise their work effectively to schools and explain how it can contribute to school improvement
  • facilitate school-to-school support as appropriate
  • promote high-quality curriculum progression in schools and ensure that hubs’ work in schools is integral to this
  • robustly evaluate the impact of their own work on pupils’ music education.

Schools should:

  • make better use of the provision and funding provided through hubs as part of the National Plan for Music Education
  • expect music hubs to provide them with expert advice and challenge – the challenging conversation – and take action on this
  • evaluate their musical provision more accurately, especially teaching and the curriculum, and seek training and advice as needed.

Taken from ‘Music in Schools: What Hubs must do. The challenging conversation‘ Ofsted November 2013

During Ofsted Inspections

Possible questions asked on inspection:

  • What is the impact of your school’s work with its local music hub?
  • How often is music taught to all classes? How do you judge the quality of music lessons?
  • Are you aware of Ofsted’s subject specific guidance?
  • Do all pupils / students benefit from music in school or is it just a few?

Taken from ‘Schools and Inspection, Section B6’ Ofsted March 2014