Directory: Churches and People

Section 48

Statutory Inspection of Anglican and Methodist Schools

All Church of England dioceses use the National Society’s framework for the Statutory Inspection of Anglican and Methodist Schools (SIAMS) under Section 48 of the Education Act 2005. This framework sets out the expectations for the conduct of these inspections.

The Diocesan Board of Education values the Section 48 Inspection process as a means of helping schools to develop both their Church school distinctiveness and their Christian ethos.  The inspection process is based on the National Societys Inspection Framework and Evaluation Schedule.

The Framework provides a process for evaluating the extent to which Church schools are distinctively and recognisably Christian institutions.

Section 48 reports are published on the Church of England website 

Inspection focus

Section 48 Inspection focuses on the effect that the Christian ethos of the Church school has on the children and young people who attend it. Church schools will employ a variety of strategies and styles, which reflect their particular local context or church tradition in order to be distinctive and effective. Inspectors will, therefore, not be looking to apply a preconceived template of what a Church school should be like.

The principal objective of the Section 48 Inspection is to evaluate the distinctiveness and effectiveness of the school as a Church school.

Section 48 Inspections are carried out by accredited National Society inspectors, who spend the equivalent of one day at the school, talking with children and adults, gathering evidence and making judgements around four key questions:

  • 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? (in Voluntary Aided schools and academies)

  • How effective are the leadership and management of the school as a Church school?

Further information

SIAMS Handbook - updated September 2017

Protocol for conduct of SIAMS Inspections

Detailed resources

National society - evaluation schedule, 275 KB PDF document
National society - framework for inspection, 244 KB PDF document
National Society self-evaluation model, 346 KB Word document
Lincoln framework comparison 2009-2013, 71 KB PDF document