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Assessment Policy

Authors: Peter Marett 

Date: October 2016 

Reviewed : October 2018 

To be reviewed: October 2021

Principles: We believe that it is our responsibility to ensure that students make the best progress possible and assessment is central to this process. This ethos of Assessment for Learning and Growth Mindset should be evident across the College and demonstrated in the four key areas of tracking, academic mentoring, the management of NEAs/Coursework tasks and feedback. Our Tracking, Academic Mentoring and Teaching and Learning policies need to be supported by effective assessment. Assessment should involve all learners, be central to the learning process, be based on information that is both relevant and manageable. It should help to identify student needs, motivate students, celebrate their achievement; assessment should also provide information to measure performance and identify targets to inform both tracking and academic mentoring. Aims

  • To improve student attainment and encourage students to realise the importance of high expectations by giving them quality feedback and useful targets
  • To help students become more independent in their learning by giving them the support and feedback they need
  • To ensure that students receive feedback and guidance
  • To ensure that every effort is made to support students in their completion of high quality NEA/Coursework tasks


Objectives

  • To ensure that subject teachers give timely feedback to students and constructive advice on how to progress
  • To use marking and progress with schoolwork, homework and non-examined assessments to inform tracking grades and provide information for the academic mentoring process
  • To achieve a consistent and fair approach to assessment and marking across the College

Appendix 1 - Management of Non Examined Assessments (NEAs/Coursework)

Rationale NEAs/Coursework are an essential component of some GCSE and A level subjects. The exact details and requirements vary from board to board and subject to subject, but essentially the work must be the student’s own work, verified by the school, marked and moderated by a specific date. The need for a systematic approach to NEAs/Coursework is essential if students are to maximise their success in this component of their examination and if all candidates are to be treated fairly. JCG will provide support, advice and a structured process for the management of NEAs/Coursework. 

Procedures Students should be encouraged to take responsibility for:

  • Developing an understanding of which areas of a course are assessed through NEAs/Coursework and the percentage value of the tasks
  • Familiarising themselves with the requirements of NEAs/Coursework including how it will be marked
  • Planning to meet interim and final deadlines
  • Avoiding any malpractice with NEAs/Coursework
  • Discussing progress relating to planning and completion of tasks (as permitted) with subject teachers, tutors and parents as necessary


Subject Teachers have responsibility for:

  • Liaising with the Head of Department to ensure that appropriate tasks are set
  • Being fully aware of the expectations of examination boards with regards to tasks set, marking criteria and procedures
  • Providing written guidelines for students to follow on how to plan and complete the tasks which include final deadlines and interim deadlines
  • Ensuring that students are aware of the marking criteria for tasks
  • Providing students with exemplar work and practice tasks where appropriate
  • Clarifying examination board rules regarding NEAs/Coursework (particularly relating to plagiarism) and penalties that could be applied
  • Monitoring and supporting students in their progress, having regular discussions (as permitted) to ensure students are on track with planning and completion of tasks
  • Liaising with subject leaders, heads of school, parents and tutors when there are concerns about the completion of NEAs/Coursework
  • Meeting with a student who has failed to meet a deadline or provide work of sufficient quality in order to develop an action plan to ensure that task is completed within a set amount of time; e.g. seven days
  • Communicating marks with students as required by the examination board making it clear that marks given by teachers are subject to change in moderation and that grade thresholds do vary each year (see guidance in Examinations Policy)


Heads of Faculty have responsibility for:

  • Providing their subject teachers and Assistant Headteacher with responsibility for curriculum with a schedule for completion of NEAs/Coursework, including interim deadlines (where appropriate) and moderation
  • Supporting teachers in monitoring and enforcing deadlines
  • Meeting with teacher and student when there are problems with either the quality of a task or the meeting of deadlines and imposing a departmental sanction if considered necessary
  • Moderating NEAs/Coursework as required by examination boards
  • Ensuring that there is a faculty procedure set up to monitor submission of NEAs/Coursework, i.e. both student and subject teacher sign when NEAs/Coursework is handed in (and follow the procedure outlined in the Examinations Policy)
  • Ensuring that all NEAs/Coursework is safely and securely stored
  • Informing tutors and Heads of School when there is a problem with the completion of NEAs/Coursework
  • Collating departmental NEAs/Coursework for posting


Heads of Department have responsibility for:

  • Updating Schemes of Work to include appropriate content to allow for the planning and completion of NEAs/Coursework
  • Supporting teachers with the setting of appropriate tasks
  • Ensuring that tasks and procedures meet examination board requirements
  • Monitoring the NEAs/Coursework to ensure that the quality is of a high standard


Tutors have responsibility for:

  • Monitoring the progress of students in their tutor group with their NEAs/Coursework and supporting subject teachers when deadlines or quality standards are not met
  • Informing Heads of School when there are concerns regarding the completion of NEAs/Coursework


Heads of School have responsibility for:

  • Supporting tutors and subject teachers in ensuring that students meet deadlines and quality standards for NEAs/Coursework. Setting up a meeting with parents and student if there is a problem with the completion of NEA/Coursework tasks that departmental action has not resolved
  • Communicating with Assistant Headteachers (Progress and Welfare & Exams) when there is a concern regarding the completion of NEAs/Coursework
  • Informing parents, as appropriate, of the timetable for these tasks


Assistant Headteacher with responsibility for exams has responsibility for:

  • Publicising and enforcing a whole school deadline for NEAs/Coursework
  • Monitoring and supporting HoF management of NEAs/Coursework completion across the school.


Assistant Headteacher (Progress and Welfare) has responsibility for:

  • Supporting Heads of School in ensuring that students meet deadlines and quality standards for NEAs/Coursework
  • Meeting with students and parents if NEAs/Coursework problems have not been resolved through department or Head of School action. Imposing study sessions at lunch time and after school when required
  • Reporting to the Senior Leadership Team on the progress with NEAs/Coursework and the quality of the NEAs/Coursework


Principal has responsibility for:

  • Making decisions regarding the entry of NEAs/Coursework should College deadlines not be met or the tasks be inferior to the standard expected by the College
  • Withdrawing students from non examination lessons for a limited period should it be necessary to allow the student time to complete essential NEAs/Coursework
  • Withdrawing students from an examination should they not have reached the required standards.

Appendix 2 - Marking of student work and giving feedback

Rationale 

JCG believes in the principles of Assessment for Learning thus seeing assessment as a means of embedding and extending the key learning points of lessons. Marking is an essential part of planning, assessment, teaching and learning.  Responding to pupils’ work through constructive comment acknowledges achievement, promotes positive attitudes and leads to an improvement in standards. Marking should provide information for assessment, inform planning, help students to assess their own achievement and set targets and recognise their effort and achievement. Homework is an important part of this and is a valuable and important preparation for future studies. 

Procedures

  • Tasks (class work or homework) to be assessed, in accordance with the College Learning and Teaching Policy, must have clear objectives and criteria which are known and understood by students and staff
  • Marking should provide the student with clear feedback
  • Marking could be in the form of oral comments, written comments, peer marking or self-marking
  • Each department should clearly state how work should be assessed and recorded within department guidelines
  • Marking should maintain student self-esteem and encourage them to make further progress
  • Marking should provide staff with a clearer picture of student ability and progress
  • Marking should help parental understanding of student progress


Students should be encouraged to take responsibility for:

  • Developing an understanding of how their work is marked
  • Using focused improvement time (FIT) productively
  • Reading comments to see what they have done well and how they can improve
  • Knowing their own level and developing their own targets based on teachers’ marking
  • Self-marking and peer-marking as and when appropriate


Subject Teachers have responsibility for:

  • Setting tasks (including homework according to the school homework timetable and using ShowMyHomework) which is age and ability appropriate
  • Marking student work regularly and returning work to students soon after it is completed (normally within one week for regular homework)
  • Ensuring that marking is focused and informative and relates to the learning objectives and criteria which should be explained in advance to setting the task
  • Marking and recording work in line with department guidelines
  • Using grades and comments as appropriate to the task and the needs of the students
  • Ensuring any comments, whether verbal or written, are constructive and supportive
  • Describing areas of weakness as future targets rather than as criticism
  • Using rewards from the Improving Behaviour Policy as appropriate to celebrate achievement
  • Allowing sufficient time for students to read, reflect and respond to marking (Dedicated improvement and reflection time (DIRT/FIT time)
  • Allowing sufficient time in lessons to give oral feedback and discuss progress
  • Recording marks as appropriate and using them to inform tracking
  • Following up on non-submission of homework as per the Improving Behaviour Policy and updating ShowMyHomework accordingly


Heads of department have responsibility for:

  • Ensuring that subject teachers set and mark student work on a regular basis
  • Monitoring the quality of the tasks that are set and assessed
  • Supporting subject teachers in the marking of student work according to criteria which is appropriate to the course
  • Dedicating department time to discussing the setting and marking of student work
  • Ensuring that marking is moderated within the department as appropriate
  • Publishing clear department guidelines on how work should be marked and recorded within the department, including details about requirements relating to spelling, punctuation and grammar
  • Sampling regularly student work and marking within the department to ensure high standards
  • Following guidelines issued on work scrutiny to improve marking across the department
  • Displaying grading guidelines in classrooms


Tutors have responsibility for:

  • Looking at samples of work brought to academic mentoring sessions and using the comments in marking to inform conversations with students


Heads of School have responsibility for:

  • Sampling student work and marking to increase their knowledge of the progress of individuals in the year group
  • Monitoring amount, assessment and quality of student work and advising Heads of Department and Assistant Headteacher (Progress and Welfare) as required


Assistant Headteacher (Curriculum and Learning) has responsibility for:

  • Managing, monitoring and evaluating the use of marking throughout the College
  • Leading and reviewing the implementation of the marking policy with Heads of Department and subject teachers
  • Ensuring training is available for staff in order to follow the marking guidelines
  • Sampling student work regularly to check that the marking guidelines are being applied
  • Being informed of National and Island developments in marking


Principal has responsibility for:

  • Overseeing the application of the policy by Assistant Headteacher (Progress and Welfare), the Assistant Headteacher (Organisation) and Assistant Headteacher (Learning and Curriculum)  and carrying out sample checks from time to time

Appendix 3 - Tracking Progress

Rationale 

We believe that it is our responsibility to ensure that students make the best progress possible. In order to support them in doing so, we must provide information about their potential and their progress. We are therefore committed to tracking student progress throughout their time at JCG and supplying information obtained to the appropriate stakeholders in order that appropriate action and support is given to students to further their learning. 

Aims

  • To use our knowledge of each student, each class and the whole school to track progress and set academic targets
  • To be able to identify and track the ‘Learner Profile’ of each student (see appendix)
  • To use feedback from this process to respond to the needs of individual students and classes to improve academic mentoring, teaching, learning and achievement
  • To use tracking data as a basis for academic mentoring
  • To use tracking data in school for benchmarking and self-evaluation
  • To use tracking data as a basis for providing regular information on attainment and progress of students to parents


Objectives

  • To set meaningful and challenging targets based on prior achievement and base line data
  • To regularly track, monitor and support progress towards targets
  • To organise data so that it is accessible and useful to improve learning, teaching and support available to students
  • To develop constantly the quality of data in order to ensure its continued and increasing usefulness


Procedures Assessments

  • Assessment tasks must have clear objectives and criteria which are known and understood by students and staff
  • Targets are set in the first term of the academic year. In Year 13 predicted grades are used rather than targets.
  • In Y7-12, achievement and progress are tracked three times annually and reported in the form of two periodic reports and one full report. This is supported by one Parent Evening.
  • In Y13, achievement and progress are tracked internally twice per year and reported in the form of one periodic report and one full report. This is supported by one Parent Evening.


Students should be encouraged to take responsibility for:

  • Being aware of their current performance, their targets and understanding what they need to do to meet them
  • Working to achieve their grades and, if required, producing an action plan to help them achieve
  • Understanding their strengths and weaknesses as learners
  • Developing an understanding of how their work is assessed


Subject Teachers have responsibility for:

  • Using baseline testing, teacher judgement and statistically generated targets to supply an appropriate target for each student
  • Using formative assessments to assess progress towards these targets, aiming for accuracy with the likely to achieve grade
  • Using summative assessments to assess progress at end of academic year
  • Discussing progress with students and providing targets where appropriate
  • Discussing exceptional achievement and underperformance with their Department and assisting in the formulation of an action plan to support students
  • Ensuring progress with NEAs/Coursework is checked and students are appropriately supported


Heads of Department have responsibility for:

  • Using subject reports on GCSE/A Level results to set subject targets in consultation with their Head of Faculty, the Vice Principal and the Principal
  • Ensuring assessment tasks used are common to the year group and employ various styles of assessment to meet the needs of a range of students
  • Dedicating department time to discussing students’ progress towards their target, particularly exceptional achievement and underperformance
  • Developing strategies and action plans with subject teachers to support students
  • Analysing periodic reports prepared by Heads of School
  • Reporting action in records of department meetings and providing action plans to tutors / Heads of School as appropriate
  • Supporting subject teachers in appropriate assessment and setting of targets for their students
  • Publishing clear criteria for the awarding of grades in each year group
  • Monitoring progress with NEAs/Coursework and advising Heads of School if there is a cause for concern


Tutors have responsibility for:

  • reviewing tracking grades and learner profile scores with students and using them as a basis for discussion and setting of smart targets in academic mentoring
  • liaising with appropriate staff and parents, as appropriate, to support the student’s progress


Heads of School have responsibility for:

  • Analysing data from tracking reports and identifying individual students at risk of underachievement
  • Sharing their analysis with Heads of Faculty, Heads of Department and SLT as appropriate
  • Providing, managing and monitoring a plan of action for individual students, liaising with students, tutors, subject leaders, parents, HoDs, ENCO and SLT, as appropriate, to ensure that the student receives the appropriate support
  • Identifying patterns or trends of individual or group progress and informing Assistant Headteacher (Progress and Welfare) to formulate a plan of action
  • Reporting concerns and action plans to Assistant Headteacher (Progress and Welfare)


Data analyst has responsibility for:

  • Providing Whole College GCSE and A Level Reports in August each year following the release of the GCSE and A Level results
  • Providing individual Subject Exam Reports for HoDs in September each year following the release of the GCSE and A Level results
  • Updating results following re-marks
  • Analysing CAT/School Data Report/ALPS data and providing a report in order for the school to benchmark against other schools with similar cohorts in the UK and evaluate and improve provision
  • Liaising with Heads of School to provide a tracking report after each periodic or report for a year group
  • Researching the best ways to record and present tracking data and report this to Assistant Headteachers and Heads of School.
  • Providing training to staff as required


Assistant Headteacher (Progress and Welfare) has responsibility for:

  • Liaising with Heads of School and advising the SLT and Principal of any student at risk of underachieving and providing information on the appropriate action to be taken, monitoring interventions where appropriate
  • Supporting the Principal in the setting of subject targets and whole school targets
  • Creating an annual tracking and assessment calendar
  • Liaising with the Data Analyst to provide appropriate reports to SLT, Heads of School and Heads of Faculty
  • Monitoring the use and organisation of assessment data and tracking
  • Ensuring training is available to staff in target setting and use of Learner Profiles
  • Providing information to students and parents in order for them to understand the reports they receive.
  • Keeping up to date with National and Island developments in tracking


Assistant Headteacher (Organisation) has responsibility for:

  • Managing and organisation of assessment data and tracking
  • Discussing the implementation of the tracking system with Heads of Department and Heads of School on a regular basis
  • Overseeing the work of the Admin Manager in the production, distribution and storage of tracking data to include:
  • Configuring the College’s data management system to support the tracking system
  • Ensuring that College data management system entry templates allow staff to enter a teacher set target grade at the beginning of the academic year and enter an achievement grade, likely to achieve grade and comment (in full reports)
  • Ensuring College data management system entry templates are locked and unlocked at the appropriate times in order to allow staff to enter data and in order to preserve the integrity of data previously entered
  • Ensuring training is available for staff in order to effectively use the College’s data management system


Principal has responsibility for:

  • Analysing whole cohort reports with the SLT
  • Setting whole school targets in consultation with the SLT and Governing body
  • Agreeing subject targets set by the Heads of Department in consultations with SLT

Appendix 4 - Academic mentoring

Rationale 

We believe that each student should receive individual help, support and guidance in order to fulfil the College’s aim to create an environment which enables everyone to perform at their best. Academic mentoring is an integral part of the tutorial system and academic mentoring sessions are an opportunity for a conversation between a mentor and student related to learning. Academic mentoring enhances the ethos of tracking student progress to ensure that each student knows where they are with their learning, where they have made progress, what they need to do to improve and what targets they need to set to further their progress. 

Aims

  • To improve student attainment and encourage students to realise the importance of high expectations and empower them to achieve successful learning outcomes
  • To ensure that students feel valued and know that there is somebody available whose role it is to know them well, motivate, press and praise them as necessary in order to assist them with their learning
  • To help students become more motivated and self-confident, take responsibility for their learning and make informed decisions about their subject or career options
  • To ensure that each student receives individual help, support and guidance
  • To assist individual students in using the information provided by baseline testing and tracking
  • To maintain good communication between students, tutors, subject teachers, Heads of Department, Heads of School and the Assistant Head (Progress and Welfare)


Objectives

  • To ensure that tutors have individual meetings, as directed by Heads of School, with their students to discuss learning and set targets
  • To ensure that subject teachers discuss progress and set targets with individual students regularly at strategic moments during the academic year
  • To record the main points of meetings in order to maintain good communication between all stakeholders


Procedures Students should be encouraged to take responsibility for:

  • Preparing for mentoring on the forms provided
  • Attending mentoring session with their form tutor as directed by tutor via Head of School
  • Assessing their strengths and weakness in learning
  • Discussing any issues, including pastoral, which may be a barrier to their learning
  • Setting targets with guidance from tutors and subject teachers
  • Providing feedback on progress
  • Recording outcomes of mentoring sessions and discussing these with their parents and subject teachers to identify strategies to help them meet their targets


Form tutors have responsibility for:

  • Preparing students for mentoring through tutorial programme
  • Meeting students for 15 minute sessions as directed by Head of School
  • Discussing any well-being issues that may be a barrier to student learning
  • Helping students to interpret tracking data and assess themselves
  • Guiding students in setting targets
  • Keeping records of targets and progress on Office 365
  • Ensuring students keep records of targets and progress
  • Informing subject teachers if targets set relate to their subject
  • Informing Head of School of any student underperforming in several subjects or if a student has any significant barriers to their learning so Assistant Headteacher (Progress and Welfare) can be informed.
  • Informing ENCO of any student who may need additional support with their learning
  • Encouraging, supporting and praising the student to help them meet targets, checking progress and celebrating success
  • Discussing targets set and progress with parents throughout the year as necessary and at Parent Evenings
  • Attending training sessions for academic mentoring as required


Subject Teachers have responsibility for:

  • Making assessment criteria clear and meaningful to students
  • Assessing students to provides data to set targets and track student progress
  • Organising subject related academic mentoring sessions at key moments in line with department guidelines
  • Discussing targets set in academic mentoring with student and suggesting strategies to achieve targets
  • Liaising with form tutors to discuss student progress with subject related targets
  • Discussing targets and progress with parents throughout the year as necessary and at Parent Evenings
  • Informing form tutor of any student causing concern in subject teaching group


Heads of School have responsibility for:

  • Ensuring that the tutorial programmes support the Academic Mentoring Programme and are delivered appropriately
  • Assisting in the training of tutors in academic mentoring
  • Supporting tutors in their mentoring role
  • Providing Feedback on any issues relating to the Academic Mentoring Programme to the Assistant Head teacher (Progress and Welfare)
  • Liaising with tutors and Assistant Headteacher (Progress and Welfare)


Assistant Head (Progress and Welfare) has responsibility for:

  • Managing, monitoring, reviewing and evaluating the Academic Mentoring Programme in the College and making changes when necessary
  • Liaising with the Assistant Headteacher (Organisation) to ensure quality information on student progress is available, through the tracking system, to students, parents and staff
  • Ensuring appropriate training is available for academic mentors and students
  • Liaising with the Heads of School to modify the tutorial programme so that it supports the Academic Mentoring programme
  • Setting dates for academic mentoring in consultation with Heads of School and in relation to the annual assessment calendar
  • Liaising with the Assistant Headteacher (Organisation), Admin Manager and Data Analyst to ensure that tracking data is provided promptly to stakeholders
  • Providing information to students and parents in order for them to understand the ethos of academic mentoring
  • Being informed of good practice in academic mentoring locally and nationally


Principal has responsibility for:

  • Overseeing academic mentoring and receiving feedback on progress from the Assistant Headteacher (Progress and Welfare)

Appendix 5 - Definition of terms

  • Baseline Assessments comprise our knowledge of where students are at the beginning of a school year and their likely potential to progress.
  • Baseline target grades are those set statistically using baseline assessments and prior performance
  • Teacher set target grades should be aspirational and motivational. Target grades should be the grade the student is likely to achieve if she fulfils her potential.  Targets are set in whole grades (A* or A or B etc) or 1-9.  At KS3 these should be the grade to be reached by the end of the year. At KS4 & KS5 these should be the grade to be reached by the end of the course. At KS5, predicted grades are given in place of target grades
  • Achievement Grades represent a student’s current performance in a given subject. These may be based on specific assessments or external exam results or represent the student’s general performance for a period of time.  It may take into account several formal and informal assessments.  Achievement grades are set in whole grades (A* or A or B etc) or 1-9
  • Likely to achieve grades are the grades that a teacher believes that the student is most likely to achieve in the final exam (GCSE/A Level) or at the end of the year (KS3) at that reporting moment if that student’s attitude to learning remains consistent
  • Learner Profiles indicate students’ maturity and independence as a learner. Each student is given a ‘Learner Profile’ score in each subject at each tracking moment.  The score corresponds to a statement most closely describing her profile in each subject.
  • Target Students are those who need particular support to achieve the grades they need to progress in the school or to further education
  • Predicted Grades are the grades a student is likely to achieve at the end of the year or at the end of a School. These are required by UCAS.  It is necessary that they are as accurate as possible so that students may make informed choices about applications for further education.  They should be used in all reporting in Key Stage 5.

Appendix 6 - Learner Profile

Learner Profile Descriptors

1 Exceptional learner who is enthusiastic, committed and absorbed in their learning.  An independent, rigorous and resourceful thinker.  A resilient and reflective student who thinks strategically about their learning.  Collaborative and empathetic when working with others, contributing to the learning of the class.
2 A well-motivated, well-prepared learner who works hard, perseveres and takes responsibility for their own progress.  Shows an interest in the subject, is reflective, asks questions to further their learning and involves themselves in lessons; helpful and empathetic towards others and is a positive presence in the class.
3 Consistent approach to learning.  Generally completes tasks and meets deadlines.  Mostly attentive in class and participates when prompted.  Usually prepared for learning.
4 Inconsistent commitment to learning.  May lack focus and struggle to manage distractions in class.  May disrupt the learning of others at times. Homework is often late and does not reflect good effort.  Needs to reflect on their approach to learning.
5 Rarely motivated to learn and rarely completes tasks or meets deadlines.  Distracts others and is inattentive.  Commitment to learning is a serious cause for concern.  Improvement in approach to learning needed.


  • The teacher selects the level which best fits the student in their classes.
  • When a teacher enters a level 4 or 5, they will be requested to select the behaviour(s) which need(s) to be improved.


H Homework
F Focus
C Commitment
O Organisation
H/F Homework / focus
H/C Homework / commitment
H/O Homework / organisation
F/C Focus / commitment
F/O Focus / organisation
C/O Commitment / organisation


Relationship to other policies

  1. External Policies : Data Protection
  2. Internal Policies :
  • Improving Behaviour
  • Learning and Teaching Policy
  • Home Learning Policy
  • Examinations Policy