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SIAMS – Section 48 Inspections

Latest SIAMS updates

The National SIAMS website has been updated for this academic year.

Regularly updated relevant new information is available from the Church of England Education Office website. This includes a list of anticipated inspections for the current academic year, updated policies and the New Inspection Framework (September 2023). It also contains a report on findings from SIAMS inspections in for previous academic years.

SIAMS from September 2023 will no longer grade schools it inspects.  Instead a school will receive a context driven judgement that is based on evidence gathered from 6 or 7 high level inspection questions.  The context of the school and how it informs the school’s Christian vision will be evaluated. The impact of the vision is central to this; inspectors will be considering how the vision and provision it provides ensures every pupil and adult flourishes in the fulness of life.

The new SIAMS Framework (September 2023) will ask the following high level inspection questions:

IQ1 – How does the school’s theologically rooted Christian vision enable pupils and adults to flourish?

IQ2 – How does the curriculum reflect the theologically rooted Christian vision?

IQ3 – How is collective worship enabling pupils and adults to flourish spiritually?

IQ4 – How does the theologically rooted Christian vision create a culture in which pupils and adults are treated well?

IQ5 – How does the theologically rooted Christian vision create an active culture of justice and responsibility?

IQ6 – Is the religious education curriculum effective?

And for VA schools or former VA schools now academies:

IQ7 – What is the quality of religious education in voluntary aided or former voluntary aided schools, or in former voluntary controlled schools in which denominational religious education is taught?


Preparing the Section 48 Self Evaluation Form (SEF) is the joint responsibility of the head teacher and the foundation governors/trustee governors. However, the best examples of impact of the school’s vision are the result of wide consultation including: foundation governors, pupils, parents/carers, members of the local community, the incumbent, members of the local parish and diocesan advisers.

The SEF should be presented in a summary form of no more than 2 pages for the inspection and it should form part of the school’s improvement and development process. Behind the summary SEF, a school may wish to have a longer document for internal use.

Inspection Question Resources

  • Christian Aid have produced some excellent resources on the Global Neighbours website to support with developing courageous advocacy
  • The Archbishop of York Young Leaders Award is now a central part of the national Church of England Team and is a fantastic opportunity for pupils to develop leadership skills in the context of becoming courageous advocates
  • The Diocese offers a Collaborative Review in preparation for SIAMS, please contact Chris Allen for further details.
  • Spirituality remains a core thread woven through the new Inspection Framework.  How the school understands what spirituality is in it’s own context and how it plans intentionally for spiritual development within the taught curriculum as well as beyond will be considered by inspectors. As a starting point please download our Spirituality in Schools information and our Model Spirituality Policy.
  • Spirituality Guidance – schools can access Spirituality Training as a staff meeting or by booking the central courses on Eventbrite.

If you would like further support with SIAMS or developing your vision, please contact Chris Allen on 01603 882346 or email him on