Assessment and Reporting
The Hundred of Hoo Academy enjoys increasingly improving standards of academic achievement. Our GCSE and A level results in recent years have been the best in the Academy’s history, however, we are ambitious to do even better, and are continually striving to raise the level of achievement of our pupils. Every decision at our Academy is made with Teaching and Learning at the forefront. We believe in a relentless focus on high achievement in all areas of life at the Academy. Very much at the heart of this, is our partnership with Parents and Carers, and we have a commitment to keeping you well-informed about the progress of your child.
We are clear that there are no excuses for underachievement. We aim to identify barriers which may be standing in the way of achievement, understand them in relation to our context and then focus on breaking them down, one by one. Our expertise lies in knowing our community and how best to support all of our learners.
2016-17 Changes to our Assessment and Reporting System
Changes have been made to the way your child’s progress will be recorded. Instead of levels and sublevels, your son or daughter will now be given grades and fine-grades using the new GCSE grading scale 9 to 1, with 9 at the top end of the scale. The use of fine-grades such as 7+, 7, 7-, 5+, 5, 4- etc. will provide a more accurate portrait of attainment.
The reasons for the changes above are summarised below:
- The use of National Curriculum Levels as a measure of attainment and progress at KS3 (Years 7, 8 and 9) has been removed by the Department for Education (DfE) and not replaced.
“As part of our reforms to the national curriculum, the current system of ‘levels’ used to report children’s attainment and progress will be removed. It will not be replaced.” Michael Gove, 2013.
The use of levels has been removed for the following reasons:
There are fundamental issues with an internal assessment system which relies on un-standardised level descriptor.
- In 2013, the Department for Education and The Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (Ofqual) announced changes to the content and structure of GCSEs taken by students in schools across England. The new GCSEs for English and Mathematics have been taught in schools since September 2015, and the first new season of exams are set to take place in the summer of 2017. As the result the grading structure at GCSE has been changed from letters (A* to G) to numbers (from 9 to 1). The reasons for this are outlined below:
As the result of these changes teachers at the Hundred of Hoo Academy we will be using numbers (from 9 to 1) as a measure of attainment and progress at both KS3 (Years 7, 8 and 9) and KS4 (Years 10 and 11). Therefore, we will use the same grading scale from Year 7 to Year 11.
This five year approach will make transition from KS3 to KS4 much smoother and will give more opportunities for deep understanding of key concepts.
Frequently asked questions:
How do I know if my son is making expected progress?
The nearer the ‘Working at Grade’ to the ‘End of Year Target Grade’, the better; for example, if your son’s ‘Working at Grade’ is already above his ‘End of Year Target Grade’, he is making better than expected progress. If, by Term 4, your son/ daughter is on a 2- and their End of Year Target Grade is a 4, they are not quite making the progress we would anticipate.
It must be emphasised that End of Year Targets are challenging targets which are monitored in a regular basis. This means that these targets will be reviewed and adjusted if necessary depending on the progress of your son or daughter in that specific subject.
How will the academy determine if my son is making appropriate progress?
In order to monitor whether your son or daughter is making appropriate progress and is on track to achieve their target GCSE grades, the school will be using a flight path system which will track current progress against the projected attainment in their GCSEs.
How has the Academy calculated the ‘End of Year Target Grade’?
Every student who joins the school is given a GCSE target for each subject. This is the grade he or she is expected to achieve in the GCSE examinations at the end of Year 11. This grade has been used to generate the end of year target by following an appropriate flight path.
My son/daughter’s ‘Working at Grade’ seems to be low, why is this?
As Grades 9 to 1 are GCSE grades, your child’s ‘Working at Grade’ is what they would achieve were he to sit the GCSE examination in this subject now. Therefore, the younger your son or daughter is, the lower their grade will be. As your child progresses through the Academy, and nears GCSEs, their grades will progress towards the higher end of the scale.
Should any child not be on track, the Academy, pupil and parents will work together on identifying the cause of the fall below expectation and collaboratively implement a strategy to help any pupil get back on track. For individual subjects, this could include liaison with the subject teacher or possibly the Head of Department, an offer of intervention opportunities. When the pattern occurs across a breadth of subjects, this intervention may be coordinated and supported by the Head of Year or SENCO.
We pride ourselves on being a learning community in which every one of us, whether a pupil or a member of staff, continually reflects on how well we perform and seek ways to do things better.
Education is the means for us to change our lives for the better. A good education gives us the chance to live longer, create life chances, provide for a family and enjoy success. We are confident every parent and carer joins us in wanting these life chances for their child and we are determined to create a brighter future for our young people.