In school, a variety of methods are employed to make accurate and effective assessments of pupil progress in order to plan appropriately for the children's next steps in learning.
In the Foundation Unit we use the EYFS curriculum, Tapestry, Development Matters as well as specific language and physical assessment tools and personal, social and emotional profiles. These are recorded in each child's individual profile and next steps in learning are clearly identified and shared with parents on a half termly basis. We also use the milestones (new national curriculum) for children to extend their learning.
Alongside the new National Curriculum, we use Chris Quigley's Essentials curriculum that sets out essential coverage, learning objectives and standards and covers the full spectrum of subjects and abilities.
It provides progress measures for all subjects and includes personal development and spoken communication. Assessment materials are provided, including advice for assessing progress in Years 1, 3 and 5.
Essentials uses common learning objectives for all year groups. Each learning objective has 3 milestones for progress. Milestone 1 is the expectation for the end of Year 2, milestone 2, Year 4 and milestone 3, Year 6. They are based on the standards in the new national curriculum programmes of study and meet all the standards of the new curriculum.
Depth of Learning
Schools are required to develop their own tracking to show that pupils are ‘on track to meet end of key stage expectations’. We use the Depth of Learning tracker as a tool to record progress. This is then shared with parents and carers and used to compile school reports.
We believe that learning takes time and that some children take longer than others to achieve so the focus for progress reflects the DEPTH of learning rather than just quantity. Milestones will be met initially to a basic level, working towards a deep level, recognising that deep learning takes time.
As a school we also we use the 'Star' reading assessment for monitoring progress in reading and specific maths programmes as a way of measuring progress in maths, along with the 'testbase' programme.
In order to ensure our in school judgements are as accurate as possible, the children undertake nationally accredited tests twice a year in the form of NFER Tests in Maths, Reading, Writing, Spelling and Grammar and Punctuation. These results are closely analysed and shared with parents and children as a method of continual improvement. In addition, Year 2 and Year 6 children will undertake 'mock' assessments weeks in the lead up to their SATs and question analysis and gap analysis sheets will be shared with parents.
Regular work scrutiny takes place within teams, by middle leaders and also by the senior leadership team. This is to ensure all staff mark and assess work to ensure children know how and what to improve on in order to make the best progress. We also have a clear and concise marking policy and regular pupil progress meetings to identify any children at risk of not meeting progress targets.