The Value and Core Purpose of Assessment at Stanley Park High
The core purpose of assessment is to:
- Inform planning and ensure it meets the needs of all students.
- Provide holistic information about each student.
- Provide feedback to students in order to praise, encourage, motivate and inspire them to achieve their very best.
- Facilitate effective tracking of students across all subject areas in order to identify underachievement and trigger interventions to enable support students to achieve their very best.
- To measure the progress and attainment of our students and make rigorous comparisons with similar schools and national standards.
If assessment is to be of value it has to fulfil three key criteria:
- It must be intrinsically linked with our curriculum and teaching & learning.
- It must be accurate and supported with evidence.
- It must be shared regularly with students, parents and, where appropriate, other stakeholders.
We receive KS2 results and qualitative comments from primary schools. These are used in conjunction with MidYis results to determine each student's abilities and attributes on entry to our school. (Please note that MidYis is a test sat online in the June prior to entry. It does not require any preparation on behalf of the student.) All of this information is used to set high expectations for all students.
When students start their GCSE, BTEC and A Level learning programmes they will be given a target grade/number. In most cases this is at the start of Years 10 and 12.
The following are the methods of assessment that teachers at Stanley Park High use:
This is ongoing assessment that allows the progress of students to be monitored. Most marking done by teachers falls into this category. Formative assessment enables students to reflect on their work, helping them to know what they do well and to identify what they need to do next to improve their performance. This includes the following forms of Assessment for Learning:
- Oral Feedback
Speaking and listening to students is central to effective teaching, learning and assessment. It may take the form of brief, supporting comments in class, purposeful questioning or a longer discussion with individuals or groups about a particular piece of work or unit. Tutors play a critical supporting role in this aspect, particularly during the scheduled learning conversations that focus on each of their tutee’s learning across all subject areas.
- Written Feedback
When work is marked, teachers should ensure that students have a clear understanding of precisely what they have done well (www – what went well) and outlines what they need to do to improve (ebi – even better if). This feedback must relate to the objectives set for the piece of work, as well as utilise language from our vision statement.
Parents/Carers will be provided with the opportunities to review written feedback during learning review weeks. Please see below.
- Self/Peer Assessment
Assessment should aim to enable students to reflect on their own learning. Self and Peer assessment is supported by all other forms of assessment and should have a central and explicit place in teaching and learning. Self and Peer-assessment is only effective if the teacher participates, to ensure that students are developing the necessary skills to assess their, and others, strengths and weaknesses accurately and effectively.
This is assessment against the student’s own previous standards. It can measure how well a particular task has been undertaken against the student’s average attainment, against their best work, or against their most recent piece of work. Ipsative assessment tends to correlate with effort, to promote effort-based attributions of success, and to enhance motivation to learn. As a part of this we will use ‘Best so far’ to represent our emphasis on the quality of the presentation of students’ work.
Summative assessment demonstrates the extent of a student's success in meeting the assessment criteria used to gauge the intended learning outcomes of a module or programme. It is normally, though not always, used at the end of a unit of teaching. Summative assessment can provide information that has formative/diagnostic value. We use the following summative methods:
- Assessment Grades for Marked Work
We believe that whilst the use of grades have their place, comments on work are much more effective. Following the removal of NC Levels and Level Descriptors by the Secretary of State the school consulted with all stakeholders and determined that we will not use grades/levels on students’ work in Years 7, 8 or 9. The school uses the GCSE, BTEC and A Level grading scale for students studying for these examinations in Years 10-13.
- Internal Examinations
Students will sit formal internal examinations in all Year Groups according the schedule in Appendix A. Students will be given an overall percentage in all cases and this, in conjunction with formative assessment, will be used to determine the amount of progress each student is making. In Years 10-13 this percentage will be awarded a grade/number from the GCSE/BTEC/A Level scale.
- Testing in Class
In addition to the internal examinations students will sit tests in accordance with Core/Programme procedures. These may be used to inform the data entry periods in Appendix A. Throughout the year, Programme and Core Leaders will be standardising data with their teams to ensure that the data inputted is consistent and accurate across the school.
- Learning Review Weeks
From September 2016, each half term, the school will hold Learning Review Weeks.
Learning Review Weeks are formal weeks in the school calendar when students will bring home their exercise books and folders to allow Parents and Carers to have a school focused discussion with their child and review their learning. This will include looking through their work, discussing the feedback that has been provided by teachers and identifying any areas for development. There will also be an opportunity to make comments or raise any areas of concern, so that issues can be addressed immediately with tutors or subject staff.
Learning Review Weeks will take place during the weeks shown in Appendix A. Further information about the process will be sent to all Parents towards the end of September.
Data is entered in accordance with the schedule in Appendix A. Each Data Entry period generates a sequence of meetings to determine the appropriateness of each student’s progress, with interventions initiated if progress is deemed to be of concern (See Intervention Policy).
Reporting to Parents
After each Data Entry period parents will receive either an Interim or Full Report in accordance with the schedule in Appendix A. Associated with one of these reports, there will be one Parents’ evening for students in Years 9, 10, 11, 12 and 13. In Years 7 and 8 there are Student Led Conferences with parents for each Year Group. Please see Excellent Futures Curriculum section of the website for more information on Student Led Conferences.