The Governors, the Leadership Team and Staff have agreed the following Charter with respect to end of Key Stage Two statutory testing. This Charter demonstrates the school is child centred, believes in a high quality of education (which includes a wonderful Adventurous Curriculum and great teaching) for ALL children, deep learning and high outcomes.
CHARTER: ASSESSMENT FOR CHILDREN
This is a principled school, run and lead with integrity and with due care and attention to the well-being of its pupils. Our values and vision drive everything we do for our community.
Through our broad and balanced curriculum, we strive towards pupils producing work of the highest quality that allows them to express their individuality and apply key skills and knowledge that have been taught. We are an inclusive school that recognises a broad spectrum of achievement within different disciplines. Assessment is only used to support further learning for our children; by our staff knowing them better as learners and people to create bespoke curricula and teaching and ultimately help children continue to succeed in the future.
We therefore have decided through consultation with the teachers and governors to act in the following manner concerning National Statutory Assessments Tests (commonly referred to as SATs):
· always prioritise children’s personal growth, long term development and engagement as learners and their well-being over SATs test scores
· ensure breadth and balance to the curriculum in every year group and not narrow our broad, balanced and creative curriculum offer in Year 6 or 2 reference the work our pupils produce against suitable other benchmarks (e.g. work from pupils in other schools) to ensure that we are secure in our teacher assessment judgements
· not run any additional SATs booster classes, holiday clubs or other such provision that would indicate that the SATs tests have any broader significance than being simply a tool to aid teacher assessment
· will prepare the children emotionally for SATs with minimal test practice, recognise the way in which SATs test are used as predictor for GCSE results and ensure that the pupils leaving this school leave with results that are a true representation of their skills and knowledge
· ensure that we prepare children as fully as possible for life beyond this school and encourage positive learning attitudes and a growth mindset as essential character skills for the future
It is also our view that, statutory testing in English and Maths undertaken in Years 2 and 6 have very limited scope to measure children’s attainment; but being statutory we will administer them in accordance with Government guidelines. Due to the limitations of SATs we only use them to inform our teacher assessment, which is a more accurate, detailed and fully rounded assessment of the children’s achievements. Therefore we use teacher assessment to measure attainment, progress and evaluate our school and not SATs outcomes. We feel SATs should not be the sole focus of Year 2 or Year 6 and children should not be put under any undue pressure to achieve particular scores in their SATs.
We feel that SATs (as part of teacher assessment) must be accurate and not inflated due to cramming or inappropriate focus on test outcomes. An accurate picture of children’s true attainment at the end of key stage 2 is essential in helping children succeed in the future by transferring valid and valuable information to our colleagues in secondary schools. Learning and progress should be a continuum, which is not distorted by artificially applied age-related point in time.
Inflated assessment can lead to students being misplaced in subject ‘sets’ and inaccurate assumptions could be made about the level of challenge. Due to fact that secondary schools are judged by the progress made from KS2 SATs to GCSE, children who have inflated KS2 SATs are sometimes boosted and constantly working to tests from Year 7 to Year 11.
We feel that in the long term the whole statutory assessment system and associated accountability systems needs to be reviewed and re-designed to ensure tests are not the focus of any education setting. In the meantime, ASSESSMENT should only be FOR the benefit of CHILDREN!
This charter has been agreed by the Governing Body, the teachers and the leadership team and shared with the parents of the school.
The principles of this charter are supported by NAHT, MorethanaScore Group, NEU, Headteacher’s Roundtable, Sir John Jones, Mike Fleetham and
The Assessment for Children Group.