Assessment and Marking

“The quality of assessment has a significant impact on attitudes to learning and on attainment in schools by stimulating and challenging pupils to work hard and by encouraging teachers to focus on how to improve the learning of individual pupils”

(Ofsted, “Good Assessment in Secondary Schools”)

Objectives:

  • To provide clear guidelines on the school's approach to assessment.
  • To establish a coherent approach to assessment across all faculties.
  • To provide a system of assessment that is clear to students, staff and parents.
  • To ensure that assessment and marking leads to all students making progress.
  • To provide meaningful feedback to students to offer advice on how to improve and raise attainment.

Practice guidelines:

Classroom practice:

  • Learning objectives must be set at the start of each lesson.
  • Success criteria related to levels/grades must be shared with students.
  • Ensure that success criteria are shared and modelled throughout lessons.
  • Skilful questioning must be used to assess attainment (using, for example, Bloom’s Taxonomy) and set targets for further progression.
  • Monitor learning throughout lessons in order to continuously assess the pace and strength of progress and to intervene to address misconceptions by reshaping and modifying teaching to meet students’ needs.
  • Plenary phases must be used within lessons to assess progress and summarise learning.
  • Praise progress and reward achievement through comments and the Merit praise and reward systems.

Marking and Feedback:

Learning objectives and learning outcomes are used as the benchmark for oral and written feedback. They should be shared and made clear to the students in advance of attempting a task.
Students should receive regular and detailed feedback on their work, which is constructive, informative and focused, so that they understand how they are progressing and what steps they need to take to improve.
Return assessed written work and feedback on oral work normally within 10 working days of its completion/submission dedicating quality class time to its return, discussion and student reflection.
All students’ work should be acknowledged and marked in accordance with the guidance provided, with some selected work at least twice each half term (for subjects with more than one lesson a week) and once a half term for those with one lesson a week.
Teachers are required to comply with the Merit marking policy1
Teachers are responsible for recording marks or comments for students’ work regularly to ensure that written evidence is available to inform discussions with students, parents and colleagues.

Target-Setting:

Target minimum levels are set for achievement at the end of each Key Stage.
Student targets are based upon all available data and are centrally recorded within SIMS.net.
Targets are referred to as Target Minimum Levels [KS3] and Target Minimum Grades [KS4].
Target Minimum Levels and Target Minimum Grades are regularly compared with Teacher Assessed Levels [KS3] and Predicted Grades [KS4] in order to measure progress.

Progress Checks and Reporting:

Performance data is collected and analysed six times a year for every student.
Attitude to Learning grades are collected and analysed six times a year for every student.

Roles and Responsibilities:

The role of the Subject Leader in assessment:

  • Setting and communicating appropriate, differentiated learning objectives for each lesson and each unit of work.
  • Communicate assessment criteria.
  • Provide opportunities for students to engage in peer and self assessment opportunities.
  • Mark and assess work regularly.
  • Assess work against NC levels and KS4 grade criteria and communicate these to students.
  • Give feedback that enables all students to make progress.
  • Record all appropriate data and information in a range of ways.
  • Provide accurate data for Progress Tracker checks.
  • Provide data and information for new teachers of student transfer.
  • Keep up to date with pedagogical research and “good practice”.
  • Provide statutory data as required.
  • All teachers plan for formative and summative assessment and identify assessment opportunities.
  • Assessment for Learning takes place, including appropriate feedback to students.
  • A range of evidence is produced to support judgements regarding progress, achievement & attainment and utilising Assessing Pupil Progress [APP] rationales as a structure for assessment where applicable.
  • The feedback that teachers give to students is diagnostic, formative and understood by students through work book sampling and lesson observations.
  • Regular moderation/standardisation is planned for within the faculty.
  • Whole school deadlines and statutory requirements are met.
  • Regular monitoring of the progress of individuals and groups takes place and action is taken to promote achievement and progress.
  • Regular analysis of assessment data takes place.
  • Liaison with external and internal school Examination Officers re: Entries for all examinations is current and up to date.

The role of the Team Leaders in assessment:

In the context of assessment all Team Leaders should lead their team in ensuring:

  • The use of appropriate assessment data is used to identify students who are underachieving.
  • They provide feedback to students and parents whose progress and achievement is particularly good.
  • They intervene with support and challenge strategies where a student or group of students is underachieving in relation to expectations.
  • Regular liaison with Subject teachers concerning individual student progress.

The role of the Examinations Officer in assessment:

To liaise with appropriate staff/students/parents/exam boards regarding all aspects of external assessment and take responsibility for the organisation and invigilation of all internal school examinations.

The role of the Data Officer in assessment:

  • To ensure that all centrally held data in relation to student’s attainment, achievement and progress is kept up to date within SIMS..
  • To provide appropriate reports related to the attainment, achievement and progress of individual students, and groups of students across the school.