Assessment, Reporting and Recording
Every subject ensures that regular assessments are set, and these are used to inform you about a student’s progress which is then recorded centrally on the School’s ‘Go for Schools’ system. The link to access the information is then sent to parents (up to three times per year) so that the progress of each student can be analysed, both academically and behaviourally.
Key Stage 3
At Key Stage 3 we have adjusted the system used to report progress regarding students across all their subjects.
Having used an assessment system in the past that assigned GCSE based grades to KS3 work, hindsight tells us that using levels or grades aren’t very accurate and that they potentially distract from learning and the feedback we actually want students to act on.
We can do a better job in assessing your child so that they learn more at KS3, so we have devised a model to best suit LCA school students.
This applies to Year 7 and 8 and will be reported to parents three times a year via Go 4 Schools online reporting.
Our system of assessment focuses primarily on improving the learning of our students, and which builds on the following overarching principles:
- A move away from giving GCSE grades for KS3 work to focusing on just giving great feedback within our marking;
- A move towards charting progress relative to a student’s starting point and away from simply charting attainment e.g. Alex is exceeding where we expect him to be at this stage in year 8;
- Refusing to define a students’ ability at the start of their secondary school journey by giving them a ‘minimum expected grade’ to achieve in KS3 – these are used only at KS4 and KS5 now when they link directly to examined courses;
- A well designed and challenging assessment at the end of year such as an examination or practical assessment in Years 7 and 8 – to produce summative data, and to prepare students for the challenging demands of the examinations required by the new GCSE and A Level courses;
- Flexibility to allow for a students’ ability in subjects to be recognised as having variability (you might be a brilliant mathematician but not so great at art for example), but recognising that nearly every subject will need to prepare students for linear written examinations at the end of Year 11.
To get this assessment of each student’s progress right, we have done the following:
- All subject areas have a clear understanding of what their students should know, understand and be able to do by the end of each year at KS3.
- Students’ Key Stage 2 data, CATS test results and for some subjects, a baseline test is used to organise students into ‘LCA prior attainment groups’:
This information will be generated internally only and is to be used by teachers. We do not share this with students. The information will identify a student’s starting point, but will not anchor them in any one group, or limit the progress they are able to make. It is subject to change on an annual basis by subject teachers who will consider how well they have progressed in the previous year. From this, departments will be able to measure a student’s progress throughout the year from where they started. Teachers will discuss each student’s progress with their parents at each PCE in line with the individual expectations for that child.
- As a school, we need to reach a judgement about how well your child is performing in each of his/her subject areas so that we can keep you informed of their progress. The rates of progress individuals make will be determined mostly by their motivation and determination. Teachers use assessment in a variety of forms to measure how well an individual is doing.
Each student will make progress that is relative to their starting point. There are four stages of progress that your child could make per subject:
- Exceeding (E) expected progress: currently likely to exceed their end of year expectations
- Meeting (M) expected progress: currently likely to meet their end of year expectations
- Working towards (W) expected progress: currently likely to just miss achieving their end of year expectations
- Underperforming (U) against expected progress: currently unlikely to achieve their end of year expectations
Parents can expect to see particular strengths or areas for development emerging in certain areas of the curriculum and it is very likely that students will ‘exceed’ in some subjects and not in others.
For more detailed information regarding ‘Assessing at Key Stage 3’ please do study the booklet available by clicking here
LCA ASSESSING AT KEY STAGE 3 STUDENT AND PARENT GUIDE, which has also been emailed to all parents of KS3 students.
Key Stage 4 & 5
At Key Stage 4 and 5 the progress report will show progress in relation to end of key stage Minimum Expected Grades (MEGs).
At KS4 and 5 each student will be given a MEG in the form of the new GCSE / BTEC / A level grade that is the minimum that we expect the student to achieve in that subject, by the end of the Key Stage.
For KS4 this grade is what students nationally with similar KS2 scores are expected to achieve at the end of the Key Stage 4. We use Fisher Family Trust – an educational company with over 20 years’ of examination data linked to KS2 scores, coupled with teacher expertise and knowledge of each student, to set these MEGs.
Of course MEGs indicate the ‘most likely’ grade achieved nationally based on KS2 data for each subject and as there is no ceiling to applying effort and overall achievement, your child should always aim to achieve at the very highest level that they are capable of and use the MEG as a guide.
For KS5 the MEG is what students nationally with similar KS4 GCSE scores are expected to achieve at the end of KS5. We use ALPs to set these MEGs. The MEG represents the minimum expected grade and well-motivated students can achieve better grades than that. It also goes without saying that students with the wrong attitude to their studies will find it difficult to achieve their MEGs. KS5 students will be expected to consistently produce work of this standard and beyond.
Each year group will have at least one academic progress evening, which we call Parent Consultation Evenings (PCE) where progress is discussed with teachers.
A summative report is written once per year by the tutor to share holistic progress with you across all facets of school life.