Year 7 Assessments

Aim - To support the delivery of a high-quality education by accurately informing teachers and students about what aspects of the curriculum they currently do and don’t know in order to plan the next steps for ALL students to make the best possible progress.

In order to meet our aim students are assessed regularly in all their subjects on the key knowledge, understanding and skills required for ALL students to make the best possible progress. These key elements have been identified by our highly qualified subject specialist staff taking into account the requirements of the national curriculum and the relevant exam boards.

At St. Mary’s assessment can take many forms ranging from directly asking a student a question and listening to their response, multiple choice quizzes, whole-class response surveys, marking classwork and homework to low stakes tests and formal assessments in preparation for external examinations. As such, feedback also varies in format including individual verbal feedback, group or class verbal feedback, written individual or collective feedback and exam marking.

The assessment information we collect in school is primarily used to inform future teaching and learning. Each subject requires different information at different times and therefore we do not regularly conduct whole year group assessment weeks. Instead, each the Head of Department, in consultation with a member of the senior leadership team, determines their own assessment points throughout the academic year.

Teachers and leaders regularly review their assessment procedures to make sure they are fit for purpose and regular training and information is provided for all staff involved in the assessment process.

Teachers and leaders track learning throughout the year and report to parents on the progress students are making with the key knowledge and skills elements in each subject they study.

We are currently piloting a new reporting system which uses the following descriptors to comment on these key elements:

Descriptor

Description

 Mastered

A deep understanding of knowledge or ability to perform the skill with expertise.

A very high success rate with questions or tasks related to this element of study.

Secure understanding

A good foundation for future learning.

Clear knowledge or ability to answer questions or perform tasks related to this element of study with a good success rate.

Working towards

There is some confusion or uncertainty regarding this element of knowledge or skill. This needs to be addressed by further practice, review, revisiting and re-teaching. See the ‘Next steps’ information as a starting point for improvement.

Cause for concern

Evident gaps in knowledge or inability to complete the required skill. This could prevent further learning in future.

See the ‘Next steps’ information as a starting point for improvement.

Assessment using the above descriptors is uniform and not relative to learners’ prior attainment, ability grouping or set.

The report provides feedback to learners and their parents/carers that clearly identifies strengths and gaps in curricular knowledge and skills. In order to assist ALL students to progress with their learning a series of ‘Next Steps’ are provided for each key elements of the curriculum for all subjects on the school website.

Students can access these ‘Next Steps’ resources at any time – before, during or after studying them in class.

As well as reporting on academic progress, parents will also be informed of their child’s Attitude to Learning (A2L), attendance, punctuality, achievement and behavior points. Students will also receive a comment from their form tutor in relation to the school’s CHARACTER Virtues. More information about these can be found on our website.

Attitude to Learning scores are about how well your child operates as a learner in lessons. St Mary’s is about the children taking part in a Learning Journey and about their responsibility for how they learn within that journey. The impact on learning of attitude is well documented and we look at these scores as part of our overall view of progress made. Attitude to Learning scores are reported using the following scale: