Teachers use a range of assessments on order to check children’s learning. There are two main types of assessment: formative assessment is used to support children to make the next step in their learning – marking and verbal feedback are the best examples of this; summative assessment are ‘tests’ where children have the chance to show how much they know at any given point in time.
Informal assessment happens every day and teachers use these assessments every half term to check the progress that pupils have made, particularly in Reading, Writing and Maths. Class teachers meet with one or more senior leaders in ‘Pupil Progress Meetings’ every half term; we discuss pupils’ progress and see where we need to provide extra challenge or support for individuals and groups.
The government ensures that all children are ‘tested’ towards the end of Year 2 and Year 6. These assessments are called SATS, Standard Assessment Tests and are used to see how well each child, and school, is performing against national benchmarks. From September 2015 children will also be assessed when they first arrive at school in the Reception (F2) class. At Fosse we work extremely hard to make sure that children are not put under any undue pressure or extra stress when they are assessed – we want every child to fulfil their potential but we also want to make sure that pupils enjoy learning and are happy at school.
More detail about how we assess pupils and track progress
In Foundation Stage most assessments are carried out through observation. Foundation staff are extremely skilled at noticing how young children learn and make notes across a huge range of different areas. Information gathered is compiled in a ‘learning journey’ and at the end of Foundation 2 children are assessed against ‘The Early Learning Goals’
Since September 2014 all schools in England have had to devise their own ways of measuring pupil progress within the 2014 National Curriculum. We have worked closely with a group of local schools, sharing good practice and working with each other to look at how we assess and measure progress. Staff have checked our assessments with other schools to make sure that we all agree – this is particularly important in Leicester where so many pupils change from school to school.
We use an online tracking system called ‘Target Tracker’ which many other schools in Leicester use. We also use documents compiled by Parks Primary, a local school, to help us track pupils’ progress in reading as well as Writing assessment grids created by the local authority for assessing Writing. Both of these systems help ensure that Leicester schools make accurate and consistent judgements about learning in our schools.