Where previously end of key-stage National Curriculum tests – and other teacher assessments – were graded in levels (normally numbering between Level 1 and Level 6 in primary school), from 2016 the tests will be reported as a scaled score, with a score of 100 representing the expected level for each age group. Again, it is important to note that what is now recognised as being “at age-related expectations” is significantly higher than previously.
The idea of assessing children in relation to age-related expectations will be the same for each year group from now on. Children will progress through the year, working towards being able to work at the appropriate standard by the end of the year. Once they are working “at age-related expectations,” rather than moving onto the next year’s objectives, they will be given opportunities to deepen their learning and understanding of what has been taught, to promote “mastery” of their knowledge and skills. For example, rather than working with much larger numbers in maths, they will be required to apply their reasoning skills to solve problems and be able to explain their thinking clearly. In English, they may be required to write in greater depth or think more carefully about their word choices in relation to the reader. Children who have specific barriers to learning may be taught using some objectives from the previous year’s curriculum.
Teachers will be continuously assessing your child’s progress against the criteria for assessment and will be giving them verbal and written feedback on their work to help them improve and move forward in their learning. As well as this continuous assessment, children will be given periodic tests or specific tasks throughout the year to assess them on their knowledge and to check that their understanding is deep and embedded.