Assessment at Stretton Sugwas
The new National Curriculum has been statutory since Sept 2014. Summer 2016 was the first year when statutory assessment did not use levels.
The new National Curriculum is premised on the concept of mastery - something which every child can aspire to and every teacher should promote. It is about deep, secure learning for all, with extension of able students (more things on the same topic) rather than acceleration (rapidly moving on to new content). Effective assessment will clearly show how secure pupils are in their learning and prompt the teacher into planning the most appropriate next steps for learning.
The overriding principle of good assessment is that it should be clearly tied to its intended purpose. There are three main forms of assessment: in-school formative assessment, which is used by teachers to evaluate pupils’ knowledge and understanding on a day-to-day basis and to tailor teaching accordingly; in- school summative assessment, which enables schools to evaluate how much a pupil has learned at the end of a teaching period; and nationally standardised summative assessment, which is used by the Government to hold schools to account. Good formative assessment ranges from the probing question put to a pupil as they think something through; quick recap questions at the opening of a lesson; scrutiny of the natural work of pupils; right through to formal tests.
As an academy we promote these key Assessment Principles:
- Assessment is at the heart of teaching and learning.
- Assessment is fair and honest.
- Assessment is ambitious and appropriate
- Assessment is consistent.
- Assessment outcomes provide meaningful and understandable information.
We view assessment as the starting point, not end point, for pupils’ learning. Continuous assessments are used by teachers to develop the next steps in pupils’ learning. Pupils then have an on-going dialogue about their ‘targets’. Written and oral feedback is used, including pupil self-assessment and peer assessment of pieces of work and work is planned against age related expectations and the ability of the children.
Ofsted expect the school to demonstrate good evidence of pupil progress over time and show clearly what ‘typically’ happens in school. The key evidence for this will be in the children’s books. However, we do need to demonstrate how children’s achievement is being recorded and monitored.
Our aim is to give reliable information about how each child, and their class, is performing. To enable this we use a range of techniques depending on the subject:
- ScholarPark (online management system) for tracking that is meaningful, as pupils work towards age-related expectations in the new curriculum
- Track using Excel to clearly see what objectives are achieved by which children.
- Use quizzes and questionnaire to check the level of understanding the children have attained and the knowledge they have gained.
- Provide information that is easily understood and transferable and covers both qualitative and quantitative assessment
- Differentiate attainment between pupils of different
abilities, giving early recognition of pupils who are falling behind and those
who are excelling
- Ensure assessment is closely linked to improving the quality of learning and teaching
- Ensure feedback to pupils contributes to improved learning and is focused on specific and tangible objectives
- Produce recordable measures which can demonstrate progress over time
- Make comparisons against expected standards