The quality of assessment has a significant impact on attitudes to learning and on attainment in the schools by stimulating and challenging pupils to work hard and by encouraging teachers to focus on how to improve the learning of individual pupils.
Statement of Philosophy and principles
Assessment is a process of collecting, analysing and interpreting information to assist teachers, parents and other stakeholders to make decisions about the needs, progress and achievement of learners in order to improve and facilitate future learning. Quality assessment enables planning and delivery to be more effective, thereby raising attainment for every child.
The RE Learn & Develop Assessment Principles include:
- Assessments are a set of continuous, fair, accurate and moderated processes which are integral to informing learning and teaching.
- Assessment data and information should come from a range of sources and observations which are reliable and contextual.
- Assessment criteria and tools should be identified during curriculum planning with links to expected outcomes and objectives
- Assessment data should be recorded appropriately to help identify progress for students, parents and teachers.
- Assessment practices should be child centred and help develop self-esteem, confidence and ownership of learning in the context of promoting a growth mindset.
- Good assessment strategies work towards developing intrinsic motivation thereby encouraging children to be lifelong learners.
- Assessments identify strengths as well as areas for improvement with clear next steps or targets.
- Assessments help children understand the next step goals.
- Assessments provide information to support differentiation in planning ahead for a class.
- Assessment identifies children for intervention and may indicate the type of support needed.
- Assessment leads to creating age appropriate targets which may be shared with individual children or classes.
- Feedback leads children to reflect on the success criteria which have been shared with them.
- Children need to understand why their work or the work of others satisfies the success criteria. At times this should be modelled by their teacher.
- Good assessment practices train children to self and peer assess.
- Good assessment strategies help in monitoring progress as part of the self-evaluation of the school at all levels.
Assessment procedures and systems
In line with government expectations, the school reports grades to parents three times per year. The school year is split into three equal parts or trimesters which are known colloquially as ‘terms’. At the end of each term period, term grades are reported to students and parents through the iSAMS information management system. Students in Grades 6 – 10 receive a grade between A and F, in line with the current grading system used in the IGCSE exams. Students in Grades 11-12 receive a grade between 1-7, in line with the current grading system used in the IBDP. These grades do not tell you what a pupil would get if they took an IGCSE or IBDP exam at that moment. Instead, they provide an approximation of what they might be expected to achieve if they continue at the same rate of progress. If a student achieves an A+ Grade in Grade 7, it means they are doing as well as possible at that stage of their school career. Similarly, an IBDP student can read their progress against IB subject criteria and grade descriptors.
For IGCSE and IB students, it is good practice to assess students progress in relation to the external rubrics, mark schemes and specifications. Working with external rubrics and mark schemes is a very effective type of formative assessment for students. However, it is important to recognize that students are not externally assessed until the end of their two year programme, which allows them time to develop the knowledge and skills and maturity to succeed. Cambridge and the IB assess them on the whole course and not just aspects of it. Therefore, basing terms grades solely on ‘raw’ marks from past exam papers or coursework is not appropriate. Instead, departments should moderate internally and adjust the grades accordingly to give a fair assessment of the progress the student is making and the grade they ultimately achieve.
For students undertaking external assessment in the form of examinations or coursework, the focus of assessment is the preparation of the skills and knowledge and conceptual understanding required for the external examination bodies. Teachers are expected to teach and assess in line with the requirements and guidance provided by Cambridge, the IB and the Ministry of Education.
Assessments: requirements for teachers
- The final grade should be based on a variety of assessments
- Rubrics/success criteria must be made available to students before the assessment
- Students should be given a least one week’s notice of an upcoming deadline
- No single piece of work or test should be worth more than 40% of the final grade. It is possible to separate a larger project into sections which are marked individually so long as a separate rubric and deadline are given, e.g. an essay could be worth 60% by adding introduction (20%), body (30%) and the conclusion (10%).
- All assessments marking must be standardised or moderated in some way by departments
- Where appropriate, subject teachers of the same year group should assess students in the same way (i.e. students should sit the same assessment regardless of the class they are in)
- Students who submit work on time should receive full feedback
- Teachers should remind students of upcoming deadlines.
Meeting deadlines - guidance for teachers
It is important that students meet the submission deadlines set by teachers. The following elements of the policy aim to help students learn the importance of meeting deadlines and manage their time better.
Teachers should apply this guidance sensitively, remembering that there may be extenuating circumstances that require a different approach to be taken.
- Students are expected to approach teachers in advance if they cannot meet a deadline to request an extension.
- The teacher can grant extensions at their discretion.
- All students should be given a grace period of one extra day to submit work but will be flagged and lose the opportunity to request an extension and/or resubmit. (Note: teachers do not flag students who have submitted within 24 hours of a previously agreed extension.)
- Teachers are encouraged to allow students to resubmit work if:
- The first submission was on time (or within an agreed extension)
- The first submission was significantly lower than the student’s potential
- It is clear that the student made an appropriate effort to respond to the task
- The work was not under timed or test conditions.
- Resubmissions are at the discretion of the teacher and do not necessarily apply to all students.
- The resubmission should be marked and given full credit to the terms.
- It is not expected that teachers provide detailed feedback on the resubmission.
Late submission without an agreed extension
- In all cases where work is submitted later than an agreed deadline, teachers issue a ‘Pending work’ flag.
- Lateness of submission of externally assessed work will result in a Friday detention issued by the AH Curr or AH IBDP
- Reduction in marks awarded (see example below):
- If work is submitted later than one day after the agreed deadline, the mark awarded for the work is reduced by 5%.
- If the work is not submitted after seven days, the reduction is 10%.
- Each further week reduces the mark by a further 10%.
- This reduction applies only to the terms graded version of work and not to externally moderated or examined work.
- Number of days late and reduction in mark for that item of work:
- 1 - no reduction
- 2-7 days - 5%
- 8-14 days - 10%
- 15-21 days - 20%
- 22-29 days - 30%, etc.
- Work that is still unsubmitted five working days before a terms deadline will receive a mark of zero unless the teacher agrees to an extension with the student.
Roles and Responsibilities
In class teachers can expect students to:
- Arrive punctually and have the necessary equipment for classwork and assignments
- Respect the fact that everyone has the right to learn
- Collaborate constructively with peers and teachers in order to share learning and understanding
- Submit work punctually with content and presentation that reflects the best of their ability
- To be able to explain the content and process of their assessments to others
In class students can expect teachers to:
- Provide a clear overview of the purpose of the unit of study when it is introduced
- Provide clear, scaffolded information about the assessment requirements
- Provide clear rubrics in advance of teaching in order to establish the basis of assessment before learning begins
- Provide adequate time for students to complete tasks
- Assess all work appropriately, including formative feedback, and return it to students in good time (For longer and more detailed work, especially in the case if IBDP assessment, teachers may take more than a week to return work)
In addition to classroom expectations, teachers are expected to:
- Use qualitative and quantitative assessment data to inform planning and teaching
- Plan a variety of assessment tasks which allow all students the opportunity to progress in a supportive learning environment
- Collaborate within departments when creating assessments and moderating completed work to ensure uniformity of assessment
- Ensure that all assessments worth more than 20% of the terms are included on the Student Assessment termsendar
Parents are encouraged to:
- Offer constructive and positive support. However, this support should not interfere with the authenticity of their children’s work
- Provide an appropriate, quiet work space at home
- Familiarise themselves with the RE Learn & Develop Academic Honesty Policy and support their child in understanding the RE Learn & Develop school values.
- Students from Grade 9 upwards are expected to have a laptop computer. However, the school also recommends that all students:
- Have access to a computer at home
- Have appropriate access to the internet when necessary to complete homework tasks
The Secondary Leadership Team are responsible for:
- Effective dissemination of this policy to all stakeholders using a variety of means, such as: meetings, information on the website, staff training and for students through the curriculum etc.
- Monitoring the implementation of the expectations and strategies outlined in the policy.
- Providing regular training for new and existing staff on effective assessment practice.
- Annually reviewing and updating the policy in consultation with the Assessment Committee.
"Diploma Programme: From principles into practice" International Baccalaureate Organization, 2015, www.ibo.org/globalassets/digital-toolkit/brochures/academic-honesty-ib-en.pdf. Accessed 3 Feb. 2021.
"Diploma Programme Assessment Principles and Practice." International Baccalaureate Organization, 2018, https://www.ibo.org/contentassets/1cdf850e366447e99b5a862aab622883/assessment-principles-and-practices-2018-en.pdf. Accessed 3 Feb. 2021.
"Guidelines for developing a school assessment policy in the Diploma Programme." International Baccalaureate Organization, 2018, https://www.ibo.org/contentassets/1cdf850e366447e99b5a862aab622883/assessment-principles-and-practices-2018-en.pdf. Accessed 3 Feb. 2021.
"Guidelines for developing a school assessment policy in the Diploma Programme." International Baccalaureate Organization, 2018, http://mics.edu.gh/Guidelines%20for%20developing%20a%20school%20assessment%20policy%20in%20the%20Diploma%20Programme.pdf. Accessed 3 Feb. 2021.
If you would like to contact us to understand more about this Policy or wish to contact us concerning any matter relating to this policy, you may send an email to email@example.com or contact us using our website communication forum.
Created: 13 January 2020
Updated: 3 February 2021
Review Date: June 2024