Continual assessment of our children’s abilities is absolutely vital to ensure that we can monitor their achievements and put in place provision that enables them to make further progress.
We assess children in different ways and at different times of the year. What follows is a summary of how we assess children:
We give oral feedback to children about their work; we ensure that all work is at least ticked and recognised and we adapt our planning to meet the children’s needs. The class teacher from Year 1 upwards also makes notes on any children who might have struggled with a concept in Maths or English during or immediately after the session. These notes are then used in the afternoon by teaching assistants who give extra support to “close the gap”.
We mark children’s work in Maths and English in close detail ensuring children are aware of what they have done well and what they have to do next to improve. Children’s ongoing targets are referred to in this as well as the learning objective of the lesson and the criteria needed to be successful in meeting the objective. We then ask all children in KS2 to respond to the marking comments using purple pen. This is known as “purple pen time” and is timetabled into lessons normally on a Friday. We also adapt our planning to meet the children’s needs.
Every two to three weeks:
Children’s reading, writing and maths targets that are stuck in the front of exercise books are reviewed by the teacher to see how well the children are doing against the targets.
Every half term:
Teachers meet with the head teacher to discuss all pupils’ progress and identify any issues that need to be addressed. Children’s achievements were previously converted into National Curriculum levels but from the autumn term 2015 they are now converted into “steps” (see National curriculum assessment from September 2015 section below).
Teachers use a range of resources and methods to inform end of year assessments. Teachers write end of year reports for parents for all children. All teachers pass on assessments and other information to the new teachers of the class in the following September.
Assessments are made of children’s abilities in every school year using the steps system outlined below (see National curriculum assessment from September 2015 section below) but there are also 4 points in a child’s school career that are significant, published and used by Governors, the local authority and OFSTED to help judge how well a school is meeting its pupils’ needs. Confusingly these points do not use the steps system described below.
- Reception: at the end of Reception, children are assessed against what are known as early learning goals (ELGs). If a pupil has attained well they are described as having a “Good level of development” (GLD)
- Year 1: Children in Year 1 are tested on their ability to link sounds and letters when reading. This is known as phonics screening. Children pass the phonics screening by reading a minimum of 32 words correctly in a test of 40 unfamiliar words
- Year 2 (end of Key stage 1): Year 2 children sit tests in Reading and Maths. These tests are marked by teachers and raw scores will be converted to scaled score around 100 where 100 represents expected achievement. Scores below and above the 100 score represent achievement below and above expectations. Writing is assessed by teachers using a national assessment framework.
- Year 6 (End of Key stage 2): Y6 sit KS2 SATs in Reading, spelling, punctuation and grammar (SPAG) and Maths. Writing is assessed by teachers using a national assessment framework. As with Year 2, raw scores are converted to scaled score around 100 where 100 represents expected achievement. Scores below and above the 100 score represent achievement below and above expectations. Scaled scores of 110 and above represent a higher standard of achievement. Unlike Year 2, the Year 6 tests are externally marked.
Year 2 and Year 6 assessments (including the progress made from the end of KS1 to the end of KS2) are also published annually on the DfE website (click here to view)
Once all assessment data is in for the school year targets for the following year in attainment and progress are set.
National curriculum assessment.
National curriculum levels are officially not in use any more and schools have to use their own assessment systems. We assess children against the new national curriculum and are using what are known as steps. This is not a national system but it is being used by many schools across the country.
|There is now a specific curriculum for each year group from Year 1 to Year 6. Our new assessment system takes account of this.|
|All children are assessed every half term against the curriculum for their current year.|
|How well they are doing within their year group is shown by being at different stages:|
|b= below the current year group’s expectations|
|b+ = moving towards the current year group’s expectations|
|w = working within the current year group’s expectations|
|w+ = working towards being secure in the year group’s expectations|
|s = secure in the current year group’s expectations|
|s+ = being very secure and showing mastery of the current year’s expectations|
National curriculum assessment steps expectations
|The table below explains how assessments relate to end of year expectations|
|Expected age attainment range|
|Working towards end of year expectation||Working just within end of year expectation||Working at upper end of year expectation||Working above end of year expectation|
|b, b+ or w||w+||s||s+|