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Assessment Policy

 

Attitude to Learning:

  • All students are graded on their Attitude to Learning at the end of each half-term. There are three components: Effort (Classwork); Independence (Homework) and Tone Time Place (Behaviour). Students are graded from 1 (excellent) to 4 (unsatisfactory) against each criteria.
  • An ATL ranking is shared and distributed widely within year teams and house teams – with tutor groups, year groups and houses all competing to come top of the ATL league and reward events for those who have shown the greatest commitment to learning in each half-term.
  • From 2019/20 onwards we have extended to the whole school an academic attainment snapshot at each half-term indicating whether a student has been working on/above/below their target grade.

Academic Assessment:

  • From 2020/2021 students in Years 7-10 will sit one formal assessment per year (in June).
  • Students in Year 11 and 13 will sit two sets of mock exams prior to sitting their external exams (November and January for Y11 and November and March for Y13). Students in Year 12 sit exams alongside Y13 and have a final End of Year exam in June.

Attainment Grades:

  • In Years 7-9 grades are “Age Related” so a student making normal progress will retain the same grade throughout Key Stage 3. The age related grade is an indicator of expected attainment should the student continue to make normal progress to the end of Key Stage 4.

  • If, for example, a pupil gets a grade 9 in maths in Year 7 Summer 2, it means we think they are in the top 3% nationally for their age group: if they make expected progress they should go on to achieve a 9 in their maths GCSE in Y11 – not that they would get a 9 if they sat the exam now.
  • New GCSE Grade equivalents
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  • Where the curriculum allows, age related grades are generated by sitting common assessments across the ARK network – thus norming APA students against a sizeable cohort and accounting for the cohort’s characteristics to generate grades.
  • We routinely use standardised national tests for English, maths and reading to ensure that cohorts are making expected progress.
  • In years 10-13 we assess against components of the final exam using published grade boundaries to create a “Current Grade”. From the summer of Year 10 onwards we also collect predictions.

Target Grades:

  • In Years 7-9 target grades are based on extrapolating KS2 prior attainment to a KS4 base grade. Stretching targets are set with each department aiming to be in the top 20% progress group (using Fisher Family Trust data).
  • Departments are able to alter KS3 students’ target grades provided the overall progress score remains unchanged.
  • In KS4 targets are set by Heads of Department such that progress is again targeted at top 20%.
  • In KS5 targets are set at ALPS 3 (so a student would need to be in the top 25% for progress in each subject to achieve their target grades).

Using data to raise attainment:

  • Data is shared with students and with parents after each formal assessment and is RAGed according to whether the student is meeting their targets.
  • Parents also receive one written report per year containing an overview of student attainment.
  • Attainment data is also shared with parents at every Parents’ Evening.
  • After each assessment students complete an assessment review and action plan which is then discussed with their tutor/head of year.
  • After each assessment students’ attainment is plotted relative to their base grade and pastoral teams identify and intervene with any students slipping below their base grade. The relentless focus on progress ensures that student attainment is celebrated or tackled irrespective of their prior level.
  • After each assessment a “mosaic” is produced which demonstrates, at a glance, where there are individual student or subject concerns. This is shared through a presentation and discussion with all staff and then followed by analysis within departments.
  • Following each assessment the Head of Department will conduct an assessment review looking at the performance of all students and using question level analysis to identify the WWWs and EBIs of student performance this culminates in a meeting with the Principal/Vice Principal to agree action steps.
  • At regular intervals all departments use formative assessment – on a school or network basis – to identify and tackle misconceptions.

Headline measures:

  • The Government publishes a variety of information on school and pupil performance. Some of the key determinants of individual success are:

Measure

Description

Attainment 8

The average GCSE score across a balanced set of KS4 entries

Progress 8

The difference between the Attainment 8 score and the expected score (based on KS2 results). A positive score indicates above average progress, a negative score indicates below average progress.

9-4 English and Maths

Whether the student has achieved the “basic pass” grade in maths and at least one of: English Language or English Literature.

Grade 4 Ebacc

Whether the student has achieved the “basic pass” grade in maths, a modern foreign language (including home language), a humanities subject (history or geography) and at least one of: English Language or English Literature.

9-5 English and Maths

Whether the student has achieved the “higher pass” grade in maths and at least one of: English Language or English Literature.

Grade 5 Ebacc

Whether the student has achieved the “higher pass” grade in maths, a modern foreign language (including home language), a humanities subject (history or geography) and at least one of: English Language or English Literature.

9-7 English and Maths

Whether the student has achieved an exceptional grade in maths and at least one of: English Language or English Literature.