OUR KEY PRINCIPLES UNDERPINNING ASSESSMENT AT THE TYNINGS SCHOOL
These principles underpin our school’s Assessment policy on how we will assess all children throughout their school career. Staff CPD training will be at the heart of this process.
- It provides clear evidence of children’s progress across year groups:
- It provides accurate information on children’s progress and determines whether our assessment system is fit for purpose.
We believe that:
- Assessment is at the heart of teaching and learning: it provides evidence to guide teaching and learning: the opportunity for pupils to demonstrate and review their progress.
- Assessment is fair: inclusive of all abilities, purposeful and appropriate to the needs of the children, free from bias towards factors that are not relevant to what the assessment intends to address.
- Assessment is honest and the outcomes are used in ways that minimise undesirable effects: outcomes are conveyed in an open, honest and transparent way to assist pupils with their learning and the judgements. These judgements are moderated by experienced professionals across the local authority in a shared approach to teaching to ensure their accuracy.
- Assessment is ambitious, it places achievement in context against nationally standardised criteria and expected standards criteria and expected standards for which schools and school teachers are accountable. It embodies, through objective criteria, a pathway of progress and development, which supports transition, for every child. It sets high expectations for all learners.
- Assessment is appropriate; any assessment process should be clearly stated; conclusions regarding pupil achievement are valid (to age, task and to the desired feedback information); it should draw on a wide range of evidence to provide a complete picture of student achievement; it should demand no more procedures or records than are practically required to allow pupils, their parents and teachers to plan future learning.
- Assessment is consistent; judgements formed according to common principles; results are readily understandable by third parties; results are capable of comparison with other schools, both locally and nationally.
- Assessment outcomes provide meaningful and understandable information for pupils in developing their learning; helps parents in supporting children with their learning; supports teachers in planning teaching and learning; enable school leaders and governors in planning and allocating resources; track pupil progress and government and agents of government.
- Assessment feedback should inspire greater effort and a belief that; through hard work and practice, more can be achieved.
Strong, regular assessment is key to making sure our teaching is the most effective it can be, and that the opportunities for children to make progress in their learning are the best we can provide. We use outcomes from lessons, marked worked, conversations with children and a number of assessment tools to evaluate exactly where children are in their learning, and we use all of this information to tailor the work throughout the school day to the needs of the children.
Our principles of assessment are the same throughout the school, though the methods and statutory duties differ slightly in different phases of the school. All children are tracked regularly and the data analysed rigorously to ensure we are identifying any children or groups of children who may be making less than good progress; this in turn leads to carefully selected interventions that teachers and teaching assistants put in place to accelerate children’s progress and understanding in a particular identified skill.
We also make sure there is always a challenge for all children so there is never a moment that children are not expected to be learning and progressing. If you would like more specific information about this, contact your class teacher show ill be happy to talk through how they ensure your child is assessed. You can ask for your child’s National Curriculum (or Foundation Stage) leaves at any time; please allow 24 hours for a written copy of your child’s levels.
Below, you’ll find an overview of assessment in the different phases:
In the Early Years Foundation Stage (Hedgehogs and Squirrels), children are assessed through ongoing observations by teachers and other adults, and these are recorded in their learning diaries, which are shared with parents. The children are assessed using the Foundation Stage Profile (which was updated in 2013). You can find out more about the Early Years Foundation Stage profile at https://www.gov.uk/early-years-foundation-stage
In Year 1, children undertake a statutory Phonics test, usually in June, the results of which are reported to mums, dads and carers at the end of the academic year in addition to a written report.
In Year 2, children are assessed at the end of the year in Reading, writing and Maths, and for those children who did not reach the Phonics threshold when they were in Year 1, are retested in Phonics. These results are reported to mums, dads and carers in addition to a written report.
In Years 3 to 5, while there is no statutory reporting of end of year outcomes, we use a similar model to statutory assessments and, though a combination of class work and testing, we provide a teacher assessment for each child in reading, writing and maths. You will find this on the end of year report.
In Year 6, children are assessed through tests in May in reading, spelling, grammar, punctuation and maths. These tests (commonly known as SATS) are then published nationally every year. Writing is not assessed through a test, but through a consideration of all the independent work a child has done throughout the year. This is also then published nationally. Mums, dads and careers also receive this information in addition to the written report.
Reporting to mums, dads and carers
The Tynings School invites mums, dads and carers in to three “formal” consultation evening each academic year, in Autumn, Spring and Summer terms. At this meeting, you will also receive a report of your child’s achievement and progress. Dates for these consultations are on the school calendar and newsletter and you will receive instructions nearer the time on how to book a consultation.
You can also book an appointment at any time to talk to your class teacher if you want more information about your child’s progress or attainment. Please do not expect to be able to see your class teacher at the start of the day as he / she must prioritise settling all the children into their learning. If it is urgent, you can see if a teaching assistant is available or come round to the office to pass on a message.