Parents informed about Level 6 SATS

(97 Posts)
lisson Tue 19-Mar-13 10:40:48

Do primary schools tell the parents if their child is going to sit the level 6 SATS?

Myliferocks Wed 20-Mar-13 19:11:29

DD3 has come home today saying she's doing the level 6 Maths as well as the level 6 English.
They're doing an extra Maths session one lunchtime a week and an extra English session in tutor time one day a week.
She's very blasé about it all.
It sounds like her teachers are being very low key about it and aren't pressurising the children at all.

morethanpotatoprints Wed 20-Mar-13 21:06:37

How does extra tuition not constitute pressure?
Just a thought

StuffezLaBouche Wed 20-Mar-13 21:14:24

It doesn't always, morethan. I tutor my level six children at lunch time and repeatedly stress they do not have to attend - they have been given revision aids to work through at home as well. I don't force them to d any of this. They all come every week because they genuinely enjoy the things we do and they enjoy learning.

morethanpotatoprints Wed 20-Mar-13 22:15:49

StuffezLaBouche.

I am not being judgmental at all and am finding this thread really interesting. My older dc did Y6 SATS many years ago and I find it so different now. Both the parents and the children in both schools they attended had no idea when they were doing them. There were no revision classes, homework etc. They did related lessons in the classroom but weren't aware of it. I wonder if any schools operate like this now. Probably doubtful as they all seem to happen in a designated week across the nation.
The whole idea of assessment of learning is very interesting, as a qualified teacher I can see the importance of it in both the system and classroom. As a Home educator, I think its nuts and a complete time waster. I'm not suggesting I will never assess learning having taken place, but the idea of finding levels and targets is meaningless now.
As I say though I can completely see the importance in the education system because teachers have to work to targets.

StuffezLaBouche Wed 20-Mar-13 22:28:17

I didn't say you were being judgemental..?
In reply to your comments though, (briefly as eyes almost shutting!) I think most children being put in for level six would need some extra input, further than just differentiated work in class. For example, my kids working at 5a for Reading should get sixes, but at present wont as I need to work with them on answering questions in the required way.

If I had children I would love to home educate them, and I agree that in your circumstances, all this business of levels, sub levels, etc is pointless. Unfortunately there has to be some measurable system for all schools and all children. Such a shame it's so flawed!

morethanpotatoprints Wed 20-Mar-13 22:41:36

StuffezLaBouche grin I know you didn't. Although I am ever mindful of coming across judgy.

Oh yes, I totally agree about the school system and I think you all do a terrific job. I read your post about the flaming from the the parent and after all the extra work you have done. shock. I can't help but having a silent gloat when I think of lack of pressure for dd with levels and SATS. Don't get me wrong I have an indication of where she's at and where she struggles, abilities etc. That will do for me.
Thank you for replying to me and hope your parents are all nice to you from now on
thanks

AChickenCalledKorma Wed 20-Mar-13 22:49:38

We have a timetable for the tests - all the level 6 tests are on the same day as the equivalent level 3-5 tests. I can't believe anyone thought that was a good idea. DD1's school is normally very good during SATs week - gives them a nice breakfast and runs special fun activities each afternoon to balance out the day. But I guess those doing the level 6 papers will miss out on that sad.

StuffezLaBouche Wed 20-Mar-13 22:49:41

Sorry, I misunderstood your post! :-)
I don't blame you for your silent gloat - if I had children I would home educate as far as I could. I do feel sorry for some of our year sixes. Out of interest, what year is your dd in? Will go to school for her secondary education?

morethanpotatoprints Wed 20-Mar-13 23:01:04

StuffezLaBouche

She is in y4 and won't go to secondary unless she wants to. She was in school until this year but wanted to leave to practice and perform her music. (long story) but exceptionally gifted in music, composing at age 4 etc. Level 8 in y3 grin average at maths, not very good at English, probably dyslexic. Very good at reading now, having found her passion about a month ago. (It was Pippy Longstocking that did it) grin

lljkk Thu 21-Mar-13 17:48:32

The point of SATs is to assess the school, not the pupils. It's an accountability system, it also means parents get a kind of external objective indicator of how their child is doing compared to the national cohort.

(Can't believe I'm defending SATs!).

Actually, I wouldn't mind all that so much IF 1) NC levels didn't come across as tickbox assessment, and 2) IF school avg KS2 SATs were not published. It's the publication that I think creates problems & pressure. Or could be published as categories or percentiles (maybe those would be better).

This thread is yet again MNers mentioning extra revision sessions, extra homework, lots of pressure. None of which is evident in my y6 child's life. Instead, neither love nor money seems to be enough to enable DD to take the SAT test she wants to take and can probably get a decent mark on. I swear I live in a parallel Universe from rest of you, I really think this thread is final proof of that.

BooksandaCuppa Thu 21-Mar-13 17:52:45

Your dd has had no stress thus far, lljkk; that's not to say she won't at secondary, especially if she goes up with all level 6s. I don't mind Sats at all, but did not want ds having teachers expect A*s from him and talk about this to him from first thing in secondary. This can happen.

Though maybe you do live in a parallel universe if your teacher still insists they're on a different week wink

lljkk Thu 21-Mar-13 18:54:20

I wondered about that, if DD having Level 6s would lead to stupidly high targets. DD pushes herself so hard, I don't want external stress as well, just support. We have half plans to move house and maybe after that I would finally find myself in same universe as rest of you. smile

SherbertStraws Thu 21-Mar-13 19:05:47

Does it really matter if they get level 6s? I am asking that seriously. What do they gain from getting level 6s instead of level 5s?

Sparklingbrook Thu 21-Mar-13 19:07:31

I think it's more what the school gets TBH Sherbert.

jeee Thu 21-Mar-13 19:14:55

lljkk, my DD sat level 6 papers last year the week after the normal SATs. My son is sitting them this year, and the school has said that this year they intend for them to be taken on the same day, but in the afternoon, as the other papers. So it may be that the teacher is thinking of last year.

In fact, at least some of my son's teachers are under the impression that the level 6 papers will be taken the week later. I don't think it reflects on their ability to prepare the children for level 6.

lljkk Thu 21-Mar-13 19:31:21

Don't think they gain anything at all Sherbert, Dd just wants it for her own satisfaction and in a way it's a good experience in terms of her learning to handle exams excitement/stress/pressure.

I may be a complete idiot by trying to push for her to do the L6 test, though. I am on a learning curve.

Could even be a bad thing to get Level 6, because (I hear) their yr9 & yr11 targets are made on the basis of what their yr6 SAT results were. Obviously this might be undue pressure, especially on a cohort that is probably overwhelmingly very bright or self-motivated anyway.

*y8 DS never did y6 SATs and the state school seems to have plucked his targets out of thin air, so I am not sure truly how much the y9/y11 targets have to be fixed from KS2 SAT results.

LaQueen Thu 21-Mar-13 20:31:35

I think though, if a child can gain Level 6s, then they're really not under that much pressure at secondary school are they?

I just had this talk, with a friend who turned her nose up at my expectations that my DDs will go to GS...'Oh, but think of all the pressure they'll be under...etc'

But, the way I see it, if they can leave primary school with high Level 5s/possibly Level 6s, and pass the 11+, then they're really not going to be under that much pressure at GS/secondary school.

I think taking your average child, and drilling them, and drilling them, and making them sweat blood to get high Level 5s/a Level 6 is what would put them under pressure at secondary school.

BooksandaCuppa Thu 21-Mar-13 20:55:23

On the whole, LaQueen, I suspect you're right. But a lot can happen between year 6 and year 11: hormones; peers; motivation; illness; family disruption...let alone the difference in curriculum/skills which might mean a high flier does not necessarily continue to be so.

I just hate the idea of a school constantly pressuring a dc to achieve an A*. Honestly, anything less for a level 6 child would not be accepted.

LaQueen Thu 21-Mar-13 21:16:27

No one can predict what's going to happen Books - but, all things being equal, if a child can score Level 6s (without really breaking a sweat) then I think they'd probably be okay gaining the A*s at secondary, even if they hit a few (minor) bumps in the road along the way.

I think it depends on how well you can detach your intellect from your emotions, if you see what I mean?

I sat my Finals knowing my Dad only had a couple of months left to live, and if anything my exams helped me, because for just those few hours I could switch off the emotion, and let the intellect take charge IYSWIM? And, it was relief.

But, obviously it depends on the individual.

lljkk Fri 22-Mar-13 08:09:27

DD would be breaking a sweat for sure, she relishes the challenge because she worked for it.

There are so many stories of very clever people who failed the 11+ because of a recent death in the family, floundered in vocational schools, only to eventually find their way back to clever academics by the most circuitious routes; they truly were badly affected by adversity.

lisson Fri 22-Mar-13 10:10:53

Apparently DS's school are going to inform the parents if their child is doing any level 6 next week. Its probably not a coincidence that this will be after the deadline for registering the children has passed.
As a parent, its irritating to have this info withheld but from the teacher's perspective I can see that its quite brilliant because if any parent wants to change the decision either way, it will be too late. (That's assuming that the teacher considers the parents' involvement as unwanted interference , but, in this case, I think that's a given!)

BooksandaCuppa Fri 22-Mar-13 22:46:29

not quite 'either way', lisson as you can ask for them not to do level 6, just not to do it!

Am sorry about your Dad, LaQueen; as you say, for some people it is a great comfort to escape into study; it is for me too (not quite the same as you but my stepmother was also terminally ill during my finals).

AChickenCalledKorma Sat 23-Mar-13 17:45:19

In response to ShertbetStraws: "Does it really matter if they get level 6s? I am asking that seriously. What do they gain from getting level 6s instead of level 5s?"

Speaking for my own child - and for her teachers (assuming they are telling the truth!) It doesn't really matter if they get level 6s. What matters is that they are being given the opportunity to work, in a structured way, towards something that will challenge and engage them, at a stage of their education where they have pretty much nailed everything else they are expected to do at primary school. DD1 is in a small group of children who are "having a go" at level 6 - they are enjoying learning some new stuff and they are not bored brainless from repeating the same work that they already know. The level 6 test is giving their teachers official permission and freedom to continue engaging them beyond what has previously been the limit of what is on offer at primary.

So, weirdly, I also find myself in the position of defending SATs. And DD1 is not showing any symptoms of pressure - on the contrary, she is doing extra maths for fun, because she likes learning new stuff.

lisson Sat 23-Mar-13 17:56:50

Does anyone know where/ if the level 6 SATS get published in league tables? I can't find the 2012 ones.

Feenie Sat 23-Mar-13 18:08:02

Yes, they will, and they were reported in 2012 aswell - Maths was 3% and Reading 0% (they upped the passmark considerably, was very different to the sample they had given).

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