Monthly Archives June 2014

Primary schools: Assessing without levels – frequently asked questions with DfE responses

Following our recent post and presentation on assessing without levels in primary schools, we have raised a number of your questions with the DfE. Here’s our summary of their responses… Reception Baseline Will the Reception baseline be statutory? The Reception baseline is not statutory.  If schools do not undertake the reception baseline, when those reception cohorts reach year 6, they will be judged on an attainment floor standard alone. What are the DfE’s criteria that baseline tests have to meet? The DfE published criteria on 29 May 2014 for baseline tests: https://www.gov.uk/reception-baseline-approval-process-for-assessments When will the list of approved baseline tests be available?
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Categories: Blog.

A Small Book of Marginal Gain

  Pages: 55 pages Size: A4 glossy soft back cover Price: £15 Author: Tim Sully This latest work from Tim Sully covers a range of small adjustments that can be made every day to improve the way we teach and learn from children. It is perfect if you are looking at changing the culture in your school, if you are interested in improving the quality of what you offer the children, and if you are interested in the high level impact of very small things (and we don’t mean the children!). Chapters include: Smiles and Body Language The Language of Expectation
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Categories: Uncategorized.

Learning Exchange praised by Ofsted after North Somerset focused inspection

We are delighted that the work of the Learning Exchange and our advisors has been recognised and praised by Ofsted in its letter to North Somerset Council today (6th June 2014) following its focused inspection into the authority and 17 of its schools that took place in the spring. In his letter to North Somerset’s Director of People and Communities, Sheila Smith, Ofsted’s South West Regional Director Bradley Simmons says… The development and implementation of the authority’s ‘learning exchange’ is understood by all schools as the key tool to enable schools to improve the quality of their provision and their
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Categories: Blog.

Primary schools: Assessing without levels – what we know so far!

I recently attended a conference and the speaker introduced the concept of liminal spaces.  Richard Rohr described a liminal space as when ‘you are between your old comfort zone and any possible new answer. If you are not trained in how to hold anxiety, how to live with ambiguity, how to entrust and wait, you will run…anything to flee this terrible cloud of unknowing.’  This perfectly describes my state of mind with assessment!  It is a strange reality to be in a place where you refer to National Curriculum levels as your comfort zone!!! The Learning Exchange, working closely with the
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Categories: Blog.

Schools Engineering Team Challenge Day

On Thursday 1 May children and staff from Grove Junior, High Down Junior, Oakfield Academy, Red Maids’, Sidcot, St Martin’s, Crockerne and Wrington schools took part in the Learning Exchange’s Engineering Team Challenge Day. The children worked in teams of five and got a firsthand experience of being engineers.  They applied their maths and science learning to the real life challenge of designing and building a working wind turbine.  Each team had a limited budget to manage and was up against the clock, with only two hours building time. Their teamwork, problem solving, communication and creative thinking skills were pushed
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Categories: Blog.

Learning Exchange Cambridge Residential for North Somerset students

On Thursday 3 April, over forty students from Churchill, Backwell, Broadoak, Worle, Gordano, and Weston College took the journey from North Somerset to Cambridge.  They stayed at Trinity Hall, one of the University of Cambridge’s older and more picturesque colleges, to get a first hand experience of life at Oxbridge and to find out how the application process works. The first day was an opportunity to explore the college and surrounding town, as well as get to know everyone else on the visit.  Students took part in a treasure hunt and learnt about the rich history of the university. Highlights
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Categories: Blog.