Written by Patricia Watt, Deputy Head of Hyde Park School
1) What prompted you to review your assessment structure?
We felt that our assessments were too examination focused and wanted to move to something which would enable us to assess the children in the classroom every day. While we wanted to keep examinations in place for Common Entrance preparation, we also felt that the percentage or grade at the end of a term wasn’t particularly helpful feedback for parents and wanted to invite parents to become much more involved in their children’s day to day learning journey.
4) How did you structure your curriculum?
The new assessment structure prompted the teachers to look at the targets their pupils should be reaching according to the new National Curriculum framework.
In turn, this prompted the teachers to review their planning in Mathematics and English. We currently only use ladders for these two subjects.
5) What has the impact been on your pupils?
Pupils are much more aware of what they are working towards. Lessons are far more tailored to the needs of individual pupils. It has even been fed back from one of our teachers that the new assessment system has revolutionised their teaching!
6) What are the next steps for assessment at Hyde Park School?
We are just about to launch the Ladders at Home so that parents are fully aware of what their children are working towards. We have decided to make the assessments available to the parents. We will allow ourselves time to fully embed the system into our English and Mathematics planning and teaching and would consider using it in other subjects in the future.