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Multi Academy Trust CEO recommended as new Ofsted chief inspector

The secretary of state for education, Gillian Keegan, has announced that she is recommending Sir Martyn Oliver for the post of His Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Education, Children’s Services and Skills at Ofsted. 

Sir Martyn has been selected as the preferred candidate because he is an accomplished school and trust leader with a track record of driving up standards in areas with high levels of disadvantage.  

He is currently the Chief Executive of Outwood Grange Academies Trust (OGAT), a large multi-academy trust (MAT) which has grown under Sir Martyn’s leadership from 17 academies to 41 primary, junior, secondary and alternative provision academies in the North of England. 

He was knighted in 2022 in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List for improving the education of thousands of children. 

While supported by OGAT, 35 schools have been inspected – 28 have improved their Ofsted rating (including eight which were Inadequate or Requires Improvement when they started working with OGAT and are now rated Outstanding) and six have stayed the same (including two remaining as Good, and one remaining Outstanding). There are 10 schools rated Outstanding in the trust. 

He is also a trustee of the Education Endowment Foundation, the National Institute of Teaching, and the Office for Students and was a founding trustee of the Confederation of School Trusts.  

Secretary of state for education, Gillian Keegan, said: “Sir Martyn Oliver has demonstrated exemplary leadership and an unwavering commitment to driving up standards in areas of disadvantage in his time as a school and trust leader. 

“I want to sincerely thank Amanda Spielman for successfully steering Ofsted over the last seven years, introducing key reforms including hugely important new education and social care inspection frameworks. 

“I am confident the breadth of Martyn’s experience will enable him to build on this vital work as Ofsted moves into the future.” 

The government said that under Amanda Spielman’s leadership, Ofsted has evolved, most notably with the introduction of its Education Inspection Framework for schools, early years, and further education in 2019. This has brought a new focus to the importance of a rich, knowledge-based curriculum.  

It added Sir Martyn has the right experience to provide strong direction during this time across the range of Ofsted’s functions, from schools and colleges to childcare providers and children’s services. 

Sir Martyn Oliver, CEO of Outwood Grange Academies Trust, said: “I am deeply honoured and hugely privileged to have been recommended for this role. Subject to the pre-appointment hearing, I can promise that I will work extremely hard and very closely with the whole sector so that we can together build on what has been done to date to create the best system in all areas of education, children’s services and skills for the benefit of children and young people. 

“Working with others, prioritising inclusion, and aiming for the highest standards in all areas have been key principles for Outwood Grange Academies Trust under my leadership and these would remain the case if I am appointed to the Ofsted role.” 

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