Key Stage 3 Assessment

Following changes to the National Curriculum in 2014, schools were given the freedom to develop their own systems of assessment. At Monks’ Dyke we took this opportunity to not only review our assessment system, but to also rewrite the whole curriculum across years 7-9.

Our curriculum and assessment model now provides:

  • A Key Stage 3 curriculum that develops skills and knowledge necessary for the changing landscape at Key Stage 4 and beyond
  • A learning journey where pupils study fewer things in greater depth, to develop deeper understanding of central concepts
  • An assessment system focused on developing knowledge and skills within a range of contexts, that is not purely content driven
  • An increased focus on formative feedback and greater clarity of communication between teachers, students and parents

The key standards that our teachers deliver to students throughout years 7, 8 and 9 are designed to prepare them for success in their GCSEs and beyond. All students are assessed against these standards in relation to how well they are securing the knowledge, understanding and skills delivered. Based on their prior attainment on entry, judgements are then made as to what extent they are making expected progress towards their prediction for each subject discipline and teaching staff will set challenging targets to help students to aspire to achieve and even exceed these predictions.

At regular points throughout the year, and on at least five occasions, we will communicate progress in each subject with parents. This will take the form of a written report giving a subject-by-subject breakdown showing to what extent each child is making expected progress against the key standards in each discipline area.

Opportunity to discuss specific progress and areas for improvement with subject specialists is provided through year-specific Parents’ evenings which are detailed in the College Calendar, although do not hesitate to get in touch at any time of you have any queries or concerns.
The Key Standards – in the table below you will find detailed information about the key standards in each subject, which cover a range of knowledge, understanding and skills that students will be taught and assessed against, as well as the outline scheme of work to give an overview of how the standards will be delivered throughout the year.

 

YEAR 7

 y7-art  y7-cs  y7-dance  y7-drama
 y7-dt  y7-english  y7-geog  y7-german
 y7-history  y7-maths  y7-music  y7-pe
 y7-re

 

YEAR 8

y8-art y8-cs y8-dance y8-drama
y8-dt y8-english y8-french y8-geog
y8-german y8-history y8-pe y8-re
y8-spanish

 

YEAR 9

y9-art y9-cs y9-dance y9-drama
y9-dt y9-english y9-french y9-geog
y9-german y9-history y9-pe y9-spanish

 

Please note that some subjects begin studying for GCSE early and therefore will be assessed using the Key Stage 4 methodology.

Key Stage 4 Assessment

Students in Years 10 and 11 will study a range of subjects at GCSE or equivalent level and will be assessed using the relevant grading system for each qualification.
All students are set challenging targets based on predictions from their prior attainment. Progress will be assessed through teacher assessment and mock examinations. At regular points throughout the year, and on at least five occasions, we will communicate progress in each subject with parents. This will take the form of a written report giving a subject-by-subject breakdown showing the current working grade in each discipline area.

Opportunity to discuss specific progress and areas for improvement with subject specialists is provided through year-specific Parents’ evenings which are detailed in the College Calendar, although do not hesitate to get in touch at any time of you have any queries or concerns.

GCSEs are at a transition point with regard to the grading system, with some subjects using the new system of 9-1 (where grade 9 is highest), whereas ‘legacy’ GCSE specifications have not changed and will continue to be reported A*-G.

Ofqual have provided the following information about how the new 9-1 grades relate to the old A*-G grades:

  • Broadly the same proportion of students will achieve a grade 4 and above as currently achieve a grade C and above;
  • Broadly the same proportion of students will achieve a grade 7 and above as currently achieve an A and above;
  • For each examination, the top 20 per cent of those who get grade 7 or above will get a grade 9 – the very highest performers;
  • The bottom of grade 1 will be aligned with the bottom of grade G;
  • Grade 5 will be positioned in the top third of the marks for a current Grade C and bottom third of the marks for a current Grade B. This will mean it will be of greater demand than the present grade C.

The diagram below provides a visual comparison of the two grade sets:

image

Vocational qualifications – BTECs will continue to be graded as Pass, Merit, Distinction or Distinction*

Key Stage 5 Assessment

A Level specifications are also in a state of transition, with students in Year 12 and 13 studying a combination of ‘old’ and reformed A Levels. In revised specifications, the marks gained at AS Level at the end of Year 12 will not contribute to the grade for the overall A Level; students will undertake a completely different set of exams at the end of the second year of study for their A Level at the end of that year. However, some subjects are still studying ‘legacy’ A Level specifications, so marks gained in AS Levels will contribute to the final A2 grade.

All subjects continue to be graded using the A*-E grading system. At regular points throughout the year, and on at least five occasions, we will communicate progress in each subject with parents. This will take the form of a written report giving a subject-by-subject breakdown showing the current working grade in each discipline area.

Opportunity to discuss specific progress and areas for improvement with subjects specialists is provided through year-specific Parents’ evenings which are detailed in the College Calendar, although do not hesitate to get in touch at any time of you have any queries or concerns.

For further information on changes to A Levels, please visit the government website here:  https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/new-a-level-and-as-level-qualifications-requirements-and-guidance#all-new-a-levels-and-as-qualifications