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St Bernadette's Catholic Primary School

Pupil Assessment

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We believe that effective assessment provides information to improve teaching and learning.

To do this in our school, we undertake two different but complementary types of assessment: ‘assessment for learning’ and ‘assessment of learning’.

Assessment for learning (formative assessment) involves the use of assessment in the classroom to raise pupil achievement. It is based on the idea that pupils will improve most if they understand the aim of their learning, where they are in relation to this aim, and how they can achieve this aim (i.e. to close the gap in their knowledge). This is done through observation, discussion, target setting, marking and feedback of work.

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Assessment of learning (summative assessment) involves judging pupils' performance against what each child has learnt and understood of their year group's curriculum.

Teachers may make these judgements at the end of a unit of work, the end of a half term and the end of a year.

Planning for Assessment

Teachers plan lessons with clear learning objectives, originating from the National Curriculum and our own School Curriculum. They are also based upon their detailed knowledge of each child. We strive to ensure that all tasks set are appropriate to each child's ability and will provide support and challenge. Our lesson plans make clear the expected outcomes for each lesson. With the use of Age Related Expectations to inform our planning, we provide activities that allow the children to reach their targets and make progress.

Teachers always share the lesson's learning objective with the children during a lesson, they also indicate the way in which the activity is linked to the learning objective and the criteria against which the work will be judged (‘Success Criteria’). Teachers will often generate success criteria with the class. Teachers also share the ‘Big picture’, so the children understand where a particular objective fits and what the purpose of the lesson is.

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Assessing the New Curriculum

Assessments of pupils are based on how much of the new curriculum for their year group they know, understand and can use.

A set of 'Age Related Expectations' (AREs) - see document below - have been developed by teachers in Brighton and Hove, based on the new National Curriculum, which detail what a child should know by the end of his/her current year to make them 'next year ready'. As they progress through the year teachers will make assessments as to where on this scale they currently are.

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  • 'Emerging'              (X.1)
  • 'Working towards'   (X.2)
  • 'Met'              (X.3)
  • 'Met+'                      (X.4)
  • 'Deepening'             (X.5)  

(X refers to the year group e.g. 2.3 = a child in year 2, 5.1 = a child in year 5 etc.)

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An explanation of each stage:

Emerging - Children at the emerging level are just starting to access their current year group's curriculum.

Working Towards - Pupils at this level are moving closer to achieving the age related expectations for their year group however are not yet secure.

Met - NATIONAL EXPECTATIONS - This is the level the government expects pupils to get to in order to make them 'ready' for the next year.

Met+ - Pupils at this stage have moved just beyond national expectations and are starting to deepen what they have learnt in the current year by using that knowledge in different ways.

Deepening - Pupils who are deepening are taking what they have learnt in their current year and using higher order skills (Blooms Taxonomy) to deepen their understanding.

It is important to note that pupils who go beyond 'Met' (National Expectations) do NOT move on to the next year's curriculum. They broaden and deepen their understanding of what they have been taught in their current year group.

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Progress

All pupils in a class will start at 'Emerging' at the beginning of the academic year. We will aim for approximately 85% of children in a class eventually reaching national expectations ('Met' or higher) by the end of the year. Some pupils will of course go beyond Met and some may not quite reach it.

Generally speaking, if a child ends the year as 'Working Towards' e.g. 3.2  (in year 3) then it is expected they will end the following year at the same stage (4.3...5.3...6.3 - this is their 'Expected Progress'). Of course we will always aim higher and work to improve progress through focussed support and classroom intervention.

Reviewing Pupil Progress

Personal Learning Review meetings (PLRs) between the Senior Leadership Team (SLT) and class teachers occur on a termly basis to discuss each and every pupil in detail to ensure progress is being made. Where progress is not happening strategies are put in place to help get pupils 'back on track'.

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Special Educational Needs (SEN)

Pupils who are assessed as approximately one year behind their class will still access their own year group's curriculum but will be supported with differentiation and scaffolding of learning.

For those children who are approximately two or more years behind then an SEN programme will be put in place to enable/support more rapid progress.