Children's learning is assessed throughout their lessons with regular questioning as well as live marking and feedback during the lesson.
Assessment at St. Joseph's supports learning. We use a wide range of assessments during the school year to inform our teaching and make sure that children make progress.
We use formative assessments to support class teachers and children in identifying areas of success and areas for improvement. This may include checking understanding during a lesson, using a variety of assessment for learning strategies including focussed questions, in the moment marking, talk-partner work to name a few. This is integral to teaching practice and is used to both plan appropriate teaching and learning activities and adapt these to our children's needs.
We also use summative assessments at various 'check points' throughout he year, which may be in the form of tests or quizzes. This includes national standardised assessments set by the Government (SATS). Formative and summative assessments are used to identify where children are in their learning, and those requiring extra support, ensuring that all pupils achieve well.
Teachers actively seek ways to challenge children's understanding in order to gain a full picture of their attainment. Assessment is the responsibility of all teaching staff and we plan specific opportunities for moderation and discussion of our judgements.
Assessment information is monitored by class teachers and school leaders and used to inform stakeholders of the progress of children and the effectiveness of the school. We also use information from the national standardised assessments to ensure that our assessment is in line with national standards. Senior leaders also use this information to make judgements about the school's effectiveness.
In setting out these principles, we recognise that our assessment practice will develop and adapt to better the needs of our children and we actively seek ways in which to improve our practice.
The Reception Baseline Assessments take place within the first 6 weeks of your child starting Reception. It is a short, interactive and practical assessment of your child's early literacy, communication, language and mathematics skills when they begin school, using materials that most children of your child's age will be familiar with. It is not a pass/fail assessment, instead the baseline creates a starting point to measure the progress your child makes throughout their school career. The Department for Education has produced some information for parents about the 2021 assessments for children in Reception: DfE Information for Parents: 2023 Reception Baseline Assessment.
Phonics Screening Check
The Phonics Screening Check takes place in June for Year 1 Children. If any children are not at school to take it or don't pass it, they will have another chance to take the Phonics Screening Check in Year 2. This is a simple way for us to check whether children have made the expected progress in their phonics knowledge and understanding. It contains a mixture of real and alien words that children will sound out. Each word contains graphemes that the children will have been taught and helps us to identify if children need more support. Phonics is an important skill that will help your children for their future reading. All children sitting the Phonics Screening Check will have been well prepared by their teachers and we have been able to have some practise before the check.
If your child is in Year 2 they will be taking the National Curriculum tests (SATs) in May. These tests consist of:
- Reading paper 1 - short texts with comprehension questions
- Reading paper 2 - longer texts with separate comprehension questions
- Maths Arithmetic paper
- Maths Reasoning paper
Children work independently in these tests but we ensure that they are in a non-stressful environment. They will have practised tests similar to these throughout the year, sit the tests in small groups to help focus and there is no time limit. Teachers will use the results from these tests, along with the work your child has done throughout the year, to help them reach their own judgements about how your child is progressing at the end of key stage 1.
With the disruption caused to education during the pandemic, there have not been national curriculum tests in recent years. The Department for Education produced some information for 2019 tests and we will update this as new information is released. DfE Information for Parents: national curriculum assessment results at the end of Key Stage 1.
Multiplication Tables Check
If your child is in Year 4, they will be sitting the Multiplication Tables Check in June. This check is used to determine whether your child can fluently recall their times tables up to 12, which is essential for future success in mathematics. It will also help us to identify if your child may need additional support. It is an on-screen check consisting of 25 times table questions. Your child will be able to answer 3 practice questions before taking the actual check. They will then have 6 seconds to answer each question. At school we will be preparing children for this check and practising their times tables with them and sharing suitable websites for the children to practise at home.
The Department for Education has produced some information for parents about the Multiplication Tables Check: 2024 Information for parents: Multiplication Tables Check
If your child is in Year 6 they will be taking national curriculum tests (SATs) in May 2023. These tests consist of:
- Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar test
- Reading Comprehension test
- Maths paper 1: Arithmetic
- Maths paper 2: Reasoning
- Maths paper 3: Reasoning
Teachers will also give a Teacher Assessment for Writing and Science. Children complete these papers under test conditions and they are marked externally from the school. A scaled score is created from the number of marks your child scores in a particular test. Scaled scores are used to report the results of these tests to ensure there is accurate comparisons of performance over time. At KS2 the range of scaled scores is 80 to 120, with 100 or above showing that your child is working at the expected level for Year 6. Children are well prepared for these tests in school, with many opportunities to practise throughout the year and receive support where needed.
An additional bank holiday in honour of the Coronation of His Majesty King Charles III will take place on Monday 8th May 2023. As this date had previously been announced as the first day of the 2023 key stage 2 (KS2) test week, a change to the KS2 test schedule next year will be necessary.
As such, the new schedule will be:
- Tuesday 9 May: English grammar, punctuation and spelling (GPS) papers 1 (questions) and 2 (spelling)
- Wednesday 10 May: English reading paper
- Thursday 11 May: Mathematics papers 1 (arithmetic) and 2 (reasoning)
- Friday 12 May: Mathematics paper 3 (reasoning)
With the disruption caused to education during the pandemic, there have not been national curriculum tests in recent years. The Department for Education produced some information for 2019 tests and we will update this as new information is released. DfE Information for Parents: national curriculum assessment results at the end of Key Stage 2 and DfE video: national curriculum tests (SATs) at Key Stage 2