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The Downs CE
Primary School

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Assessment

Our approach to assessment

  • Assessment is integral to high quality teaching and learning and underpinned by our Christian Values.
  • It helps us to ensure that our teaching is appropriate and that learners are making expected progress
  • All staff are regularly trained in our approach to assessment
  • We have a senior leader who is responsible for assessment

Our method of assessment

  • Assessment serves many purposes, but the main purpose of assessment in our federation is to help teachers, parents and pupils plan their next steps in learning
  • We also use the outcomes of assessment to check and support our teaching standards and help us improve
  • Through working with other schools and using external tests and assessments, we will compare our performance with that of other schools.
  • We assess pupils against assessment criteria, which are short, discrete, qualitative and concrete descriptions of what a pupil is expected to know and be able to do
  • Assessment criteria are derived from the federation curriculum, which is composed of the National Curriculum and our own local design (see our curriculum statement and four year plan)
  • Assessment criteria for periodic assessment are arranged into a hierarchy, setting out what children are normally expected to have mastered by the end of each year (as outlined by the national curriculum)
  • The achievement of each pupil is assessed against all the relevant criteria at appropriate times of the school year (termly, half yearly and end of year)
  • Each pupil is assessed as either ‘below age expectation’, ‘at age expectation’ or ‘or above age expectation’ against each relevant criterion contained in our expectations for that year.
  • Where a pupil is assessed as exceeding the relevant criteria in a subject for that year they will also be assessed against the criteria in that subject for the next year. For those pupils meeting and exceeding the expected standards, we provide more challenging work that allows them to apply their skills and knowledge to a range of more complex problem solving activities
  • Assessment judgements are recorded and backed by a body of evidence created using observations, records of work and testing
  • Assessment judgements are moderated by colleagues in the federation and by colleagues in other schools to make sure our assessments are fair, reliable and valid

Our use of assessment

  • Teachers use the outcomes of assessments to summarise and analyse attainment, progress and wellbeing for their pupils and classes
  • Teachers use this data to plan the learning for every pupil to ensure they meet or exceed expectations academically and emotionally.
  • Teachers and leaders analyse the data across the federation to ensure that pupils identified as vulnerable or at particular risk in this federation are making appropriate progress and that all pupils are suitably stretched ensuring the development of the “whole” child
  • We celebrate all achievements across a broad and balanced curriculum, including sport, art and performance, behaviour, and social and emotional development
  • The information from assessment is communicated to pupils on a termly basis through a structured conversation
  • The information from assessment is communicated to parents during parents meetings and written reports providing information about what has been achieved and indications of what pupils need to do next

The Federation of The Downs and Northbourne is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people and we expect all Governors, staff, volunteers, parents and carers to share this commitment.