In Scotland HMIE operates as an executive agency of Scottish government ministers under the terms of the Scotland Act 1998. The Inspectorate operates independently and impartially while remaining directly accountable to ministers. The core business of HMIE is inspection and review in order to improve the quality of education and raise attainment. The HMIE inspects and evaluates pre‐school education, primary and secondary schools, teacher education, community learning and development, further education, and the education functions of local authorities in Scotland. Schools are rated on a scale of one to six, from unsatisfactory to excellent. These inspections are the equivalent of Ofsted inspections in England and Wales. See also Her Majesty's Inspectorate.