Individual observation and assessment is an ongoing process that the teacher undertakes each day. However, as we have small classes and each teacher is only responsible for a small group, it is unnecessary to compile the vast amount of written assessments that are required in state schools.
We believe education should not be reduced to a process of ticking boxes, or to classing a reception child as a 1, 2 or 3! It is far too subtle and complex for such an approach. The teacher carefully monitors educational basics such as reading, writing and maths with extra one to one tuition where needed. At staff meetings each child is discussed in a holistic manner.
Parents are kept informed as to how their child is progressing through discussions at the beginning or end of the school day and if necessary through evening phone conversations. However when we assess a child we always bear in mind that children develop in different areas and at different speeds. Also, we know from both research and experience that children often progress in stages, reaching a plateau before they move on to a new level. Therefore, none of our assessments are cast in stone. Often a subtle change in approach by the teacher can be enough to help the child move forwards.
Tests and Exams
The children do not sit Standard Attainment Tests. (SATs)
We use our own exam papers, for the older children, these are written by the school and are of a high academic standard. They are designed to be both enjoyable and to help prepare the children for GCSEs. Please visit the link below to see the exam papers for each subject as well as the children’s exam results. We think you might be amazed…
The main method of testing in the primary years involves tests in all subjects but in the format of games such as quizzes and challenges – these are immensely popular and are also very helpful as revision exercises. Pupils in the secondary classes are tested at the end of each topic area. However, as all lessons involve a considerable amount of discussion and hands on activity, it is always possible to know the level of each child’s understanding.
Homework is given regularly and gradually increases as pupils rise through the school. We always try to make sure that the homework is age appropriate and suitably challenging but that the amount of homework is never overwhelming. Children are also encouraged to continue at home with any ongoing project work.