In response to the release of the DFE’s workload toolkit, Tanya Parker discusses how you can generate meaningful assessment data without creating an unnecessary workload burden for your teachers.
Why collate assessment data?
It’s important to avoid the trap of collecting data for the sake of it – just because you feel that you should. Any practice taking place in school needs to have a definable positive impact on the learners. The most useful data is that which can be used multiple times – reporting and tracking as well as teaching and learning.
What educational impact can come from assessment data?
Data insight: demonstrating pupil progress, comparing cohorts and identifying pupil interventions.
Planning: identifying next steps in learning for groups, providing support and highlighting areas for additional challenge.
Engaging parents: Sharing assessment information not only informs them about what their child has learned but can engage and empower them to support their child’s next steps
Ensuring effectiveness: of intervention programmes and resources.
What data will Ofsted expect to see?
Ofsted make the point that they don’t expect to see anything beyond that which you use to support teaching within your school. You have the freedom to collect information that you need in the format that works for your teachers, SLT team and governors. Ofsted states “such information should be provided to inspectors in the format that the school would ordinarily use to monitor the progress of pupils in that school.”
What assessment information should schools be collecting?
The DfE recommendation is to ask, “what data will be useful and for what purpose, and then collect the minimum amount required”. If it doesn’t add any value to teaching or give you useful insight, then don’t collect it. Also, the balance between formative and summative assessment recording should be determined by what works for you – there’s no ‘correct’ way of doing it.
How do we make sure that assessment doesn’t create unnecessary workload for teachers?
The frequency depends on the type of data it is; little and often for formative assessment to enable a timely impact on learning and summative assessment to compare against a standard, typically at the end of a unit or term. Also, consider the level of detail needed – only collect data that could have an impact. Crucially, collect once, use many times.
How does Classroom Monitor help?
We know that teachers work hard and are always looking to be more efficient and effective; Classroom Monitor helps teachers and schools get the most value from their assessment effort. At its heart, the system encourages assessment to support the teacher, with data for tracking and parental reporting seamlessly building upon that. Being fully customisable provides you with a solution that perfectly supports your assessment framework.