ISI Inspection Training

The new ISI inspection framework has a greater emphasis on the demonstration of governors’ effectiveness in terms of oversight of leadership and management at all levels of the school, and the active promotion of the wellbeing of pupils. ISI also promotes a culture of self-evaluation in the school and takes a particular interest in how governors quality assure their own work and that of the school’s leadership and management and how they assess and respond to risk.

Our training for governors focuses on how a school can put its best face forward for the inspectorate and how governors’ effectiveness can be demonstrated. Our workshops, which are highly interactive, focus on key elements of the inspection framework, its implications for school leaders, for pupil voice and for governors, ending with key questions governors should be asking in school.

Please contact Durell Barnes, Head of Governance and Compliance, at

Our team

Governance is led by Durell Barnes

Former Deputy Director and Head of Communications at the Independent School Inspectorate (ISI) for over ten years, Durell previously spent over twenty years working in schools, latterly as deputy head. He works alongside a team of specialists with in-depth experience of school inspections, leadership and governance.

During his time at the Independent School Inspectorate (ISI), Durell was involved in the development of several new inspection frameworks. He liaised with the Department for Education, Ofsted, Local Authorities and schools about safeguarding issues and was responsible for quality assurance He has been involved in the consultation about and quality assurance of the current framework in his role as chair of the ISBA inspections oversight committee. Durell was the keynote speaker on implementing the new inspection framework at the Westminster Education Forum conference on priorities for the independent sector in January 2024. He has been a governor of maintained, independent charitable and for profit and international schools. He was for several years the chair of the Independent Schools Examinations board, is a trustee of the Emmott Foundation and serves on the advisory board of Ivy House and The Wellbeing Hub.

Learn more

Governors’ Update

FREE termly information service relevant to all UK schools

A regular update on current DfE, ISI and Ofsted initiatives alongside other national priorities in the UK. Receive high-quality executive summaries of key information with signposting to appropriate follow-up materials.



"The analysis, honestly and positively, shared our shortcomings and then, with warmth and understanding, suggested steps forward. We would certainly work with RSAcademics in the future and can recommend them without hesitation."

Dr David Burnett, Headmaster, The Royal School Dungannon

Get in touch

Email Durell Barnes, Head of Governance & Compliance, at

Call Durell on +44 (0)1858 467449