Assessment at Walford Nursery & Primary School
We believe that effective assessment provides information to improve teaching and learning. At Walford Nursery & Primary School, we aim to produce independent learners, therefore, we encourage our children to be creative and imaginative and to develop a lifetime love of learning. Research has shown that formative assessment can improve both children’s motivation and capacity to learn. We believe the key purpose of assessment is to move all children on in their learning in order for them to be well equipped with the necessary key skills. Continued monitoring of each child's progress gives a clear picture of what each child can do and their next steps for effective learning.
Through assessing, recording and reporting on pupils’ work, we aim to:
How do we assess pupils' learning?
The school welcomed the changes in the National Curriculum in 2014 and saw it as an exciting opportunity to review our assessment and reporting systems to create a more holistic approach. We were very clear that whatever assessment tool we used, it needed to be robust and track pupils’ progress across the school and not just at the end of a Key Stage.
The principles that underpin assessment at Walford Primary School are:
All teachers assess their class or group on a daily basis so that they can plan the next steps in each child's learning. It assiststeachers monitor progress, provide motivation for the children and helps inform planning. These types of assessment take place on a regular basis:
All of the above feed into 'Data snap-shots' taken every six weeks.
Statutory Assessments (End of Key Stage)
In addition to the above assessments, pupils also complete the following statutory assessments:
Removal of Levels
Alongside the introduction of the new National Curriculum, levels were removed for all Year Groups. Instead, at the end of KS1 and KS2, pupils will be given a scaled score and a ‘performance descriptor’ against the expected standard.
In order to achieve the ‘expected standard’, children need to meet the required end of Key Stage 2 expectations; this is broken down into key outcomes for each curriculum year. We use the National Curriculum objectives to assess outcomes for children at the end of each curriculum year. For example: Y2S = a child who has achieved all or the vast majority of the objectives set out for Year 2 (and no further) would be said to be ‘secure’ and working at the end of Year 2 expectation.
Tracking Points are used to examine progress and attainment numerically (as an average). There is an expectation that all year groups move on 3 tracking points in a year, one for each of the golden codes. Expectation is that most pupils make 12 months progress in 12 months.
We use the following 'Golden Codes' to assess pupils’ knowledge of the curriculum, against age-related expectations, in each core subject area:
In addition to assessing curriculum knowledge we also assess the way pupils apply their skills and knowledge. This is known as the 'Depth of Learning' rating. There are four Depth of Learning ratings:
The depth and application of a child’s learning is an important marker of their achievement and progress. To assess Depth of Learning, pupil’s learning will be examined over a period of time.
Pupils' assessments are made up of two components, their Golden Code and their Depth of Learning rating, for example: a pupil who has been assessed as Y3S #3 has achieved the expected outcomes for Year 3 and has achieved above the standard expected for their depth and understanding of learning therefore they have a good application of the knowledge they have learnt.
Early Years Foundation Phase
Class teachers use a combination of the EYFS profile and the NfER baseline assessment to measure children's progress. The baseline assessment will result in a score that forms part of each child’s baseline profile. By having a good understanding of the child’s abilities when they start school, class teachers are able to measure each child's progress and plan for next steps in learning. The baseline assessment is face-to-face with a mixture of tasks and observational checklists.
The EYFS profile assessment is carried out in the final term of Reception with snapshots being taken at the end of each term to monitor progress. The main purpose of the EYFS profile is to provide a reliable, valid and accurate assessment of individual children at the end of the EYFS. EYFS profile data is used to:
Children in Reception are assessed against the Prime and Specific areas of Learning in the EYFS profile. These are recorded on our on-line system, School Pupil Tracker Online. Assessments are based on observation of daily activities and events. At the end of Reception for each Early Learning Goal, teachers will judge whether a child is meeting the level of development expected at the end of the Reception year:
Phonics Screening Check Year 1
The Phonics Screening Check demonstrates how well pupils can use the phonics skills they have learned up to the end of Year 1 and to identify those who need extra phonics help. The checks consist of 40 words and ‘alien’ words that your child will be asked to read with a teacher. ‘Alien’ words (or nonsense words, or pseudo words) are a collection of letters that will follow phonics rules your child has been taught, but don’t mean anything. The 40 words and non-words are divided into two sections – one with simple word structures of three or four letters, and one with more complex word structures of five or six letters.
Pupils will be scored against a national standard, and the main result will be whether or not they fall below, within or above this standard. Pupils who do not meet the required standard in Year 1 will be re-checked in Year 2.
Reporting to Parents
Reporting not only fulfils legal requirements but also is vital part of our relationship with parents and the wider community, serving to support and promote the child’s learning. Parents are invited to a parents’ consultation each term and their child’s Pupil Profile is shared with them. Annually, the Pupil Profile Annual Report is sent to parents in July of each academic year. At the end of EYFS, Year 2 and Year 6 a written report which include results of statutory tests and assessments and gives information relating to progress and attainment. Each year reports will identify whether children are working at national expectation for their age, below or above. Parents are also encouraged to make appointments to meet with their child’s class teacher at any point during the year to discuss their child’s progress if necessary.