Do all schools mark their reception reports in the same way? - feeling a bit deflated!

(310 Posts)
averywoomummy Fri 12-Jul-13 18:27:35

I got DDs reception report today and feel a little bit deflated. She got all expected except one which was emergent. I wouldn't expect her to get exceeding in everything but one or two would have been lovely especially in communication and understanding which I think have always been really strong points with her (and in fact her teachers said at open evening that she was working at a year 1 level in these).

I'm a bit more bemused because a friend with a DD at a different school says her child got every category as exceeds. I know the DD well and would have said that her and my DD are fairly equal development wise so was wondering how much consistency there is across the schools in terms of deciding on grades?

My head says I am being silly and that I should be pleased that she is where she should be...but my heart wishes there had been just one exceeds!

JeanPaget Fri 12-Jul-13 18:32:01

I would prefer my child's report to be accurate, rather than for the school to exaggerate my DC's abilities to make me feel better hmm

MayTheOddsBeEverInYourFavour Fri 12-Jul-13 18:34:49

Exactly what jean said

And surely the teacher is best placed to decide, rather than you assuming your dd and your friends child are working at the same level

EmmaGellerGreen Fri 12-Jul-13 18:35:49

I would be overjoyed with all expected tbh. No feelings spared here. It is very sad as ds is a good reader (his only exceeded in a sea of emerging) and he keeps asking to read his report. Sadly, I can't show it to him, it is so so bad. [Sad]

amothersplaceisinthewrong Fri 12-Jul-13 18:36:35

What does it matter at this age, she is on target, and agree with Jeanpaget.

Sounds as if you are being a bit competitive here.

onetiredmummy Fri 12-Jul-13 18:40:42

Does it really matter op?

My ds is on all the top tables , in the gifted and talented club, gets raved about in parents evening and his report is that he's progressing as expected. Not an excelling anywhere .

I don't care, as long as he's happy and academically is where he should be its fine by me.

Don't compare your child to anyone else's , there is no merit in doing so smile

Just relax, don't give her the impression that she's not good enough.

mrz Fri 12-Jul-13 18:44:31

I would be very suspicious of anyone who claimed their child got exceeding in everything

Alibabaandthe40nappies Fri 12-Jul-13 18:48:53

Emma sad Even emergings can be positive though, provided the child has made progress. I would hope that a school would be as positive as they can without covering up things that need to be worked on.

clabsyqueen Fri 12-Jul-13 18:49:13

It's entirely possible that your DD and that of your friend are working at exactly the same level developmentally. Where I work lot of time and effort goes into moderating teacher judgements across schools but it is SUCH a difficult task. This is about the 3rd assessment system in reception in as many years - the poor teachers are having to re-learn how to use the judgement statements every years bloody ridiculous! There's also the problem of using the rest of the class to judge an individual child by that I mean if a class has a high proportion of very low achievers it can make an 'average' achiever seem outstanding. You can imagine all the permutations of that kind of problem I'm sure. Teachers are always trying to avoid that bias but it is hard. Try not to worry; there's definitely more consistency as you move the school were systems have been tinkered with (relatively) less often over the years.

Fuzzymum1 Fri 12-Jul-13 18:58:08

The levels have been set very high. The reception teacher at our school said that my son would have got expected in pretty much everything on the new system whereas he got all 8s and 9s last year (typical being 6s)

Periwinkle007 Fri 12-Jul-13 19:01:17

from what I can work out from what people on here have said expected is working at Yr1 levels and exceeding is Yr2ish.

My daughter is very bright (IMO) and she is doing very well but I will be surprised if she gets more than 1 exceeds in this new 'grading' structure (she is sure to get one for her reading, I don't see how she can't) but it doesn't change what she can or can't do. it is just a title given to it. Had she been in reception last year I honestly expect she would have had 7s and 8s but they are now in expected so she is achieving the expected level, just very securely.

to be fair to the OP no I don't think you can compare across schools, it shouldn't be different but I have a feeling it is going to be. Teachers are finding their way with it, some will take it to mean they have to meet every criteria consistently and others will do a best fit (which is what I think it is supposed to be).

everlong Fri 12-Jul-13 19:01:46

onetiredmummy unfair and easy to say ' does it really matter ' when your dc is on the top tables and gifted and talented!

Periwinkle007 Fri 12-Jul-13 19:04:51

Emma - emerging covers a wide range, from those who really are only just starting to do the things to those who are incredibly close to expected levels just not quite close enough. say the difference between 1% in an exam with a pass mark of 40% and 39%. Your son might be right at the tipping point of expected but just hasn't quite demonstrated it consistently. I hope the blurb was more positive.

onetiredmummy Fri 12-Jul-13 19:14:53

Yep everlong I see what you mean, I wrote that comment on my phone so couldn't see it all at once & it didn't say what I wanted it to say in hindsight.

To clarify, I mean does it really matter because firstly, you know you have a wonderful girl who you will be proud of & you know how good she is at certain things & you don't need validation for them, but secondly if a 3rd party puts you under pressure for details of school reports, (like my IL's always do) then if I wasn't happy with the results then I would simply exaggerate them to get the IL's off my back.

Reports are only one teacher's opinion, as far as I can tell at ds's school nobody got an exceeding in the class. I think they are aimed at very very advanced pupils & there are none of those ion his year.

Your dd sounds lovely

chinup2011 Fri 12-Jul-13 19:16:02

Being honest, I would just enjoy your children whatever they achieve, especially at this age.
It really doesn't matter and worrying about reports when they are so young takes all the pleasure out of seeing them reach their own goals in their own time.
Their school career is long and anything can happen.
Just encourage and praise whatever report they get.

SockPinchingMonster Fri 12-Jul-13 19:23:13

I honestly think that there is a massive difference in the way that schools are grading the EYFS so I wouldn't worry too much. I got my twin's report today and was expecting them to get 'Expected' mainly - with probably a few 'Emerging' for my little boy who I feel could be much better with his writing. Both are great readers but neither are child prodigys and I was shocked that my dd got 'exceeding' in 13 categories with 'expected' in rest, and even more surprisingly ds got 'exceeding' in 5 categories, 'expected' in rest. From reading some of the threads on here, where people have children who are reading chapter books and doing complex maths, yet only receiving 'expected', I can only assume that our school has marked very leniently. So I'm not sure how much value should be placed on these grades and I wouldn't worry too much if I were you - although I can understand why you feel a bit disappointed with the term expected when you know yourself that your child is very bright.

Periwinkle007 Fri 12-Jul-13 19:33:55

I suppose whilst there are guidelines I suspect it will be no different to if schools graded children A B or C. in a high achieving school a child might get a C but if they were in a low achieving school they might be top and therefore get an A.

averywoomummy Fri 12-Jul-13 19:41:05


Thanks everyone. Just to clarify I wasn't trying to be competitive with friend (as she is lovely!) just wondering how easy it was to get consistency across the schools marking.

I have looked at the explanations with each grade and I suppose unless you have an exam with specific questions it will always end up as a value judgement in some way. Also interesting what people have said about children being compared to the others in their class as DD does seem to be in a bright class (if the school gate mums are to be believed!).

I actually feel a lot better about it now. This is why I really am against all this grading as it just serves to worry and confuse people and makes a lot of work for the teachers!!

simpson Fri 12-Jul-13 20:15:24

I have had several meetings about this and the HT at my DC school said that a child needs to be mid year 2 level to get exceeding (2C).

However another school I volunteer in are going by a 1A for exceeding.

Either one are very high for reception smile

tiredbutnotweary Fri 12-Jul-13 20:46:03

Possibly missed the boat here but as this subject is very close to my heart smile ...

I have seen some evidence of a lack of consistency, for example a thread on TES (the teachers forum) with a discussion between teachers of which book band a child had to be on to achieve exceeding - the lowest was blue and the highest was turquoise. Other discussions have teachers saying exceeding is as low as NC level 1C, but many more (those that have been moderated?) requiring NC level 2C (including my own DD2s school). This is despite the guidance (via the online FAQs) specifically stating that this (saying exceeding is only achieved at level 2) should not happen (well words to that effect).

Then there's the fact the judgement is supposed to be a best fit and a child does not have to have equal mastery of all aspects of an ELG - but from what I've seen it looks more like a tick box approach where a child must have demonstrated consistent evidence a number of times AND independently too. If you check the profile handbooks definition of independent work I don't think it will match the one many teachers will give.

I would go so far as to say that if a teacher closely follows the profile handbook they could give more exceedings and whilst I am sure that some children achieving many exceedings are G&T and / or autumn DCs I suspect that at least some of them are given them due to a lower threshold used by that teacher, school or even Local Authority.

BelleDameSansMerci Fri 12-Jul-13 20:54:16

OP, I felt exactly the same as you when I saw DD's report today. "Expected" for everything which didn't really marry up with the enthusiastic description in the report.

Having said that, I'm surprised she was "Expected" in her reading as I don't think she's doing very well in that.

I suspect next year's will matter more.

Periwinkle007 Fri 12-Jul-13 21:03:43

tiredbutnotweary - you would have thought that reading bands would be the easiest one to be consistent on but blue to turquoise is an enormous difference

fancyanother Fri 12-Jul-13 21:05:58

Wasn't there some survey a few days ago that said that nationally only 40% of children reached the expected level? So nationally, your DD is fine. My DS was exactly the same- expected in everything but a couple of exceeding in the 'nice kid' categories. I was delighted!

FWIW, I was top streamed for everything in my primary school (granted it was a million years ago). I was to streamed for everything in my primary school, top of the class in everything, thought I was a genius. Got to secondary school and discovered I was distinctly average! I have continued to be distinctly average throughout my educational career! Primary school reports, especially in reception don't mean anything in the long run. Children develop at different rates. As long as your child is doing OK, they are doing OK.

tutington Fri 12-Jul-13 21:06:50

The report here - see pg 18 - states that in the pilot results 1% got exceeding in ALL 17 ELGs. That means something like out of a 4-form school (120 kids), only one child would get exceeding in all 17 categories.

They also have a scoring system and apparently national average is 32 points, with variations on gender, first language, summer/autumn/spring born etc. (pg 17).

My DD got 6 exceeding and 11 expected (no emerging) and so she's at 40 points. She's the youngest in her class (August-born) and her first language isn't English so I'm extremely happy with the result.

However, I suspect that a lot of other kids got the same or even higher results in her class... I won't be asking around because I think it's not relevant, but they should probably publish at some point the LA averages or even the school, in the same way that they publish ks1 and ks2, since they can now score the 17 ELGs.

fancyanother Fri 12-Jul-13 21:08:18

Wasn't there some survey a few days ago that said that nationally only 40% of children reached the expected level? So nationally, your DD is fine. My DS was exactly the same- expected in everything but a couple of exceeding in the 'nice kid' categories. I was delighted!

FWIW, I was top streamed for everything in my primary school (granted it was a million years ago) top of the class in everything, thought I was a genius. Got to secondary school and discovered I was distinctly average! I have continued to be distinctly average throughout my educational career! Primary school reports, especially in reception don't mean anything in the long run. Children develop at different rates. As long as your child is doing OK, they are doing OK.

fancyanother Fri 12-Jul-13 21:09:04

Oops! See?

tutington Fri 12-Jul-13 21:09:24

ps. In the report explanation it says exceeding = working at NC level 2 'expected by 7 yr olds'

simpson Fri 12-Jul-13 21:12:59

DD was originally given 5 exceedings but the EYFS Head went over all the reports and took 4 off her (hence my meeting at the school).

I was told they had a meeting with the LEA in Feb and they were told to give exceeding to a mid yr2 level only.

DD's writing is inconsistent and fluctuates from a 1A to a 2C so she was given expected and also she tends to only write either stories or love notes grin but the HT said to get exceeding she would need to be writing in other genres too (reports, non fiction, poetry etc).

Periwinkle007 Fri 12-Jul-13 21:17:57

love notes don't count then Simpson?

SockPinchingMonster Fri 12-Jul-13 21:21:14

Simpson - I definitely think there are inconsistencies in the way EYFS is being graded then as my DD was graded 'exceeding' for writing but she would have no idea how to write a report and I doubt she would even be that aware what poetry is - let alone write some :-/ She is near the top of her class ability wise and is summer born so one of the youngest, I wouldn't say she's miles above average though.. It all seems a bit of a farce to me to be honest.

Periwinkle007 Fri 12-Jul-13 21:23:08

my daughter writes quite impressive poetry (she loves poems) and she has written up experiments too - would be astonished if she gets an exceeding though for writing having read what they expect for expected

lljkk Fri 12-Jul-13 21:24:05

Ds got his report today, spot on "expected" all the way down.
I was relieved because I thought his math was so rubbish.
Problem is that older 3 DC all have records as high achievers. So I have a different balancing act on the horizon, how to recognise achievements of each as individuals.

I think y6 DD is down as exceeding for everything. So suspect me.

It doesn't matter, they go to high school & decide that coasting thru rest of life will do nicely anyway, arghghhghghghgh....

tiredbutnotweary Fri 12-Jul-13 21:26:46

Periwinkle - exactly, which reminds me of another problem teachers who took part in the pilot flagged up - the bands are so wide, you can have a child that is just expected and a child who is very nearly exceeding, they both get labelled expected but are working at quite different levels.

If everyone was assessing the way my DD2s school has been assessing, a child that got exceedings across the board would surely be G&T (well if you accept that G&T starts at moderately gifted rather than thinking that G&T only applies to the profoundly gifted!) because they'd have to working two years ahead (i.e. working on year two type work) in each of those areas.

I wonder if any mums with children that had a high amount of exceedings would be happy to share what sort of things their DCs are capable of as this might help flag up if there are inconsistencies or not?

Which reminds me, the idea that anyone would make judgements based on how a child did relative to their cohort that year makes no sense to me - I mean how can you compare one year to the next if you move the goal posts like that?

simpson Fri 12-Jul-13 21:28:55

I think they count the first couple of times but not after that wink

Was quite sweet though as the meeting was in the HT's office and when we were talking about her love notes ( I brought them up) the HT pointed to her wall and she had stuck one up there from DD <<bless>>

Definately think the results are inconsistent if DD was at the next school along from where she is she would have got another 5 exceedings...

However, at the end of the day it does not matter much (although I did have 24 hours where I was not a happy bunny).

nosila12 Fri 12-Jul-13 21:31:45

I found the EYFS grading to be wildly inaccurate. Mine was given a really poor rating both in pre-school and at the end of reception. Two years later apparently she's "gifted" in some areas. Shame they didn't spot it. But tbh i still find it hard to accept these gradings where literacy and maths are something like 1 category out of 9? Can't quite remember. Mine was graded low for something like "understanding of other cultures" when she has cousins she regularly spends time with who are indian, welsh and scottish. When I questioned the supply teacher she said "well i've probably spoken to her twice this term". So how the hell does she evaluate this? It's a complete mystery to me. I welcomed moving onto the testing tbh EYFS just seemed so random. Please educate me if I'm wrong teachers - I'm willing to learn.

simpson Fri 12-Jul-13 21:32:31

My DC school have kids reading book bands yellow to whatever colour 8 is (purple?) at expected.

1 child got exceeding for reading (DD)

2 kids got it for art & design

1 kid got it for numeracy.

This is out of 90 kids.

At the school I volunteer in out of 120 kids they had 6 exceeding mainly for art & design and PE and imagination. None for reading, writing or numeracy.

tiredbutnotweary Fri 12-Jul-13 21:38:01

Sorry Periwinkle, I now see that you already mentioned that - ermerging for concentration for me grin

simpson, yes being told they debated for a long time as DD was very close to exceeding in other areas helped ... a little - really it's my own fault for being a pendent and wanting an unrealistic level of consistency and accuracy, no surprise I scored 41 on the AQ blush

SockPinchingMonster Fri 12-Jul-13 21:39:46

Tired - I don't mind sharing what my dd is capable of - to be honest it's much less than some other poster's DCs which makes me question whether she has been marked too leniently as I certainly wasn't expecting 13 exceedings. Her school book reading level is 5 although she reads much harder books at home - probably about level 8/9 ( school refuse to let Reception children have books higher than level 5 ). She uses very good expression when reading and her comprehension is great. Her writing is quite neat and she's starting to try joined up writing. She wrote a story a few weeks ago - used A5 paper and made into a book, very basic story - I.e. There was a princess, prince rode by, they fell in love, got married.
Other than those things I'm not really sure where the exceedings have come from. She's alright with maths but no maths whizz - works with numbers up to 20 , can double and halve. Would have thought these things were pretty standard really.

libertine73 Fri 12-Jul-13 21:41:35

I've never heard of these 'expected' or 'exceeded'?? they are in reception ffs.

youarewinning Fri 12-Jul-13 21:42:04

Just had a giggle at this thread. So exceeding is a 2b in year R? I did a hop,skip and a jump for joy when DS' report stated a 2a for writing.

he's year 4

Sounds like all your DC's have done well and expected covers anything from 'normal' development through the whole of the year 1 curriculum. I had the 'old system' when DS left year R (scores of 1-9) - it gave a much clearer view.

WhatWouldBeyonceDo Fri 12-Jul-13 21:52:26

DS got 3 expecteds, the rest emerging. The notes written underneath stated he is happy, confident, socialble and enjoys learning.

Given that he had 65% hearing loss in both ears that was only corrected by surgery in January. I am frankly ecstatic he caught up so quickly.

They are 4/5. Why it's nessacery to judge them on academic ability at this age is beyond me.

BabiesAreLikeBuses Fri 12-Jul-13 22:04:02

It's necessary so they can baseline the kids accurately and predict their grades from now until the end of school. That way if they fall short this can be identified and the required staff flogging ordered (tired teacher counting down the days to half term).
I'm very surprised that exceeding has been equated to a level 2, i don't teach ks1 but thought they were not directly comparable systems from what i had read. Dd got exceeded for literacy - she reads expressively on l6 but harder stuff at home but i can't see that she'd meet level 2 criteria..l similarly she's started to write in sentences and use capitals and full stops which feels to me comfortable level 1, not2...

tiredbutnotweary Fri 12-Jul-13 22:07:24

Yes - governments new terminology (emerging, expevted & exceeding) along with their decision that a good level of development (more of their terminolgy) is a bar to be set, not a measure of how far a child has progressed. And yes the bar has been raised in the EYFS before the new national curriculum (also bar raising?!?) so that there will be an odd anomaly possible in that a child measured as emerging (but very close to expected) could over the summer holidays miraculously be assessed as at national curricular level 1B when they start in September (i.e. where they are expected to be at the end of year 1).

flowers SPM - thank you for sharing! Interestingly DDs school do joined from the start but some of the writers who have achieved exceeding print hmm, but it does seem like your DDs school have assessed more generously (than some at least), although I think in line with the handbook.

simpson Fri 12-Jul-13 22:10:59

Wow stage 5 for exceeding, shows how each school can differ. Although maybe they realise she reads harder at home.

DD regularly writes books that we have to staple together complete with illustrations (or the love notes!) but still did not get exceeding.

I did not expect her to get it for numeracy though.

One child in DD's class is a 2C for reading but is not consistent enough and gets sidetracked/distracted (he is 5 FFS!) so got expected.

tutington Fri 12-Jul-13 22:14:57

DD got Exceeding for Writing and Expected for Reading. She's on ORT level 6 orange books. She does write a lot, she actually 'documents' everything she does lately... she says she's writing letters.

This is what the teacher's comments in the Literacy section actually said:

"S has made excellent progress with her reading and is developing a lovely expression in her reading aloud. She has a good sight vocabulary and can talk about what she has read with understanding. S is an avid reader and reads a variety of things and can often be seen reading from the Interactive Whiteboard and other written texts around the school.

S can write many simple, descriptive sentences using her phonic knowledge effectively. These can be read back by herself and others. This is something she clearly enjoys and is willing to spend a great deal of time and concentration on."

The report also mentions a neat writing style in the Moving and Handling ELG.

tiredbutnotweary Fri 12-Jul-13 22:17:50

Babiesarelikebuses, the profile handbook specifically states that if a child is thought to be exceeding in any ELGs the teacher must consider the exceeding descriptors, the NC levels and discuss with the year 1 teacher. They are not comparing but deciding what NC level the child is achieving. Many of the expected ELGs are harder than NC level 1C, therefore to be exceeding the ELG you a child must be working above this level. Some are happy for this to be a 1B, or a 1A. At our school the teacher stated that her moderator told her that a 1A was not exceeding ....

Of course talking about the system and whether the system is being applied consistently is not the same as agreeing with the system. If I could wave a magic wand it would result in class sizes (or teaching groups) no bigger than 20 and MUCH less carpet time - if only!!!

simpson Fri 12-Jul-13 22:19:02

DD has a funny pencil grip which was mentioned in the moving and handling (along with struggling with scissors and using a mouse) but still got expected.

Actually I was more proud of her getting the expected level for anything physical because she struggles with this area and has had OT for most of the school year (at school).

BabiesAreLikeBuses Fri 12-Jul-13 22:19:51

I doubt if book bands are related to the goals, they're only loosely related to levels later on - eg i teach lots of kids on stage 16 whose comprehension on a test can go from 4c to 5c.... Because we score solely on comprehension and earlier book band levels focus mainly on decoding...
Of course the handwritten page means more to me than any of the rest and is the one i shared with dd. ds should get his on monday...

simpson Fri 12-Jul-13 22:20:23

Tired - both schools I have anything to do with (one is my DC school) got the yr1 staff to level work. More work for them!!

dontcallmehon Fri 12-Jul-13 22:25:32

dd got exceeding for reading but is only on stage 4 for reading. She can read simple chapter books, but school refuse to send books home that are higher than a level 4 in reception!

BabiesAreLikeBuses Fri 12-Jul-13 22:25:43

tired thanks - it's interesting to hear what you've been told. And also strange that to be above expected levels you need to be 2 years in advance. Has anyone told the inventor of the system that the kids are only 5 and 2 years is almost half their life - so half their life ahead?!
Fwiw i'd give dd a 1b for literacy and i'm delighted with that at 5. I was just as pleased to hear that the teacher had noticed her scissor skills, they have a lot to master in the first year of school!

tiredbutnotweary Fri 12-Jul-13 22:39:08

Babiesarelikebuses - I don't know what the lowest level bookband children were given exceeding for reading from - I just know that the moderator told the school that 1A was not exceeding (school had originally planned to give exceeding from 1B). This is not just reading, I mean across the board (i.e. all ELGs).

However school uses PM benchmark for book banding and that includes comprehension questions including more and harder inferential questionsas you get higher up the bands. They do not let children progress if they are struggling with comprehension.

It makes sense that a child's comprehension could vary, depending on the child's particular skill set and life experiences.

Spero Fri 12-Jul-13 22:43:04

I was a school governor for a year and I don't understand a WORD of this.

I am also struggling to think when anyone in any situation EVER was remotely bothered by the academic skills I displayed as a five year old.

Spero Fri 12-Jul-13 22:43:32

And that includes my parents.

tiredbutnotweary Fri 12-Jul-13 22:48:39

Babiesarelikebuses - I don't think the government (or whomever) did intend it to be 2 years ahead. I think what's happening is that some outstanding schools & circumspect local authorites that want to ensure they can demonstrate the right level of progress are reticent to give out many exceedings. Where will they be in two years time when children with exceedings should be at level 3 of the new, tougher, NC? Of course I am just speculating ... I could be way off ... or bang on grin

BabiesAreLikeBuses Fri 12-Jul-13 22:51:18

Bang on grin everybody has to play the game

TheSteveMilliband Fri 12-Jul-13 22:58:20

Finding this thread so depressing sad. It's year R, fgs.
Plenty emerging for ds, but he is happy and growing in confidence, felt positive till reading this. Actually, still do but find it sad that even age 5 it's seen as a disappointment not to have exceedings.

Spero Fri 12-Jul-13 23:20:08

Àh, but how else are our 5 year olds going to win the Global Race?

I have given up trying to decode my daughters report. All these levels are completely meaningless to me. She seems to be able to read, has friends so that's fine by me.

mam29 Fri 12-Jul-13 23:45:37

Ok I been where ops been last year but end of year1.

I read about new changes to reception grades on here but think p 6-9 dident seem as harsh as the words they use now which seem like a clear good or no so good or bad.

My dd1 got all 8-9 mostly in her efys scores.

All throughout year 1 teacher said she was day report came out with gradings. 1b-teacher said fine where needs to be then head posted what the numbers meant on school website info page as parents were confused adn they expected a 1 a at end of year 1.
I was upset as teacehr was basically sayin its ok for her to be behind as 1b clearly not where she needed to be.

I posted on here and got told chill out value your child be happy, wasent many pesronal comments or detail as why she got what she got.

Her july born freind in other class different teacher got all 2cs.
her mum s a mate so told me but she was very competative.
The kids in her class were competative with nc levels top, bottom tables and reading levels.

In the end we moved here after just 1 term in year 2 as they refused her extra helkp with reading despite ending year 1 on level 3 ort as she passed the magic flipping phonics test.

since jan shes had extra one to one help with ta and reports came out today and sooo proud.

She got the expected 2b so shes climbed 3sublevels in less tha a year shes worked really hard mind. The commenst were detailed ad lovley comments fromher teacher and head.
Only think was dident give sats results just teacher assessment.

guess in year 1 hopefully sats and teacher assessment levels match up and is useful but reception dont have tha

My dd was desperate to see waht she wanted and then got dismayed a was b which made me feel a bit sad in ideal world a would have been fab but she tried her best.

Im just glad she can start juniors year 3 on even keel. dident want her playing catchup year on year due to school 1s crap teaching a and attitude.

Luckily they not competative there and shes no longer fixated with levels. i darnt speak to my freind who will probably say level 3s.

last year seemed like most of her class were visibly above affected her confidence and sel esteem got tears in final tearm of year 1 and nearly every day 1st term year 2.

I think its easy for people who gave bright kids to say it be ok.

but when your child is struggling or bottom or just dont feel recognised for their talents its very hurtful and upsetting.

Also thinking fixation with grading amkes homeschooling look more appealing so much flipping pressure.

in most countries they dont start until 6-7 so why we put these pressures and expectations on 4-5years olds baffles me.

simpson Sat 13-Jul-13 00:12:09

Whilst I agree with you mam, the kids who start school at 6/7 are expected to make massive progress very quickly and don't have the learning through play advantages kids in the UK have (and I am a mum of a 31st Aug kid).

Glad your DD is doing well in her new school smile

Spero Sat 13-Jul-13 00:13:36

This is all insane. All this fuss, all this pressure - to what end? Don't huge amounts of children end up going to secondaries barely able to read?

simpson Sat 13-Jul-13 00:21:13

Why is it insane?

DD's report is full of how she has exceeded all expectations etc so I don't think it's wrong to query her assessments.

However it does depend on the individual child and DS (now yr3) would have struggled in reception to do some/most of the things asked of DD (so I assume they would not have asked him to do it).

Vagndidit Sat 13-Jul-13 00:22:01

God, this is a depressing thread. Seriously? Nothing like turning up the pressure cooker on these little ones sad

I was just thrilled that my son's report said he is "happy, making friends and enjoying school" which is the best one can hope for at such a young age.

Spero Sat 13-Jul-13 00:25:47

They are FIVE YEARS OLD. They have just about stopped crapping their pants.

They are little, little children.

I repeat, this is all insane.

I am educated to post degree level and cannot make head or tail of all this jargon, levels a and b whatever.

Just tell me if my child is reading and writing ok, does she need any help.

Don't set her up on competition with other children at the age of FIVE.

simpson Sat 13-Jul-13 00:32:44

My DD is 5 and I know she is only 5 but if she is ready for more than she is getting then I want more because she does.

To me DD is unusual in that she is very driven academically (literacy) but to me it is about getting the balance right letting her roll around in dirt as much as she wants and letting her read/write as much as she wants.

Believe it or not but I am not a pushy parent as far as my DC school is concerned (I have had 2 meetings re DD all year) but I want the best for her as do the school and at the same time I want her to enjoy making friends, sticking card board boxes together etc as well as make progress in academic subjects. IMO there is nothing wrong with that.

Spero Sat 13-Jul-13 00:39:06

I think it is a dreadful shame that all we seem to value now is academic achievement in some ludicrous Global Race - race for what?

And I am beyond pissed off with these utterly impenetrable school reports that I need to go to websites to decode and translate. Looks like deliberate obfuscation to me.

mrz Sat 13-Jul-13 06:38:51

Don't worry Spero the teachers aren't clear what it all means and the advisers certainly haven't a clue as they all say different things.

mam29 Sat 13-Jul-13 06:55:26

1stly i think when its the 1st year of childs school and possibly 1st to go you have a vision in head of what it would be like.

Its not the parents making judgements is it its the schools and the sytem.They then have to respond accordingly..

I think its natural if told something in report that comflicts your view or goes against impression they been given all year, if tolds childs behind most parants are upset and want to know how best to support their child.

For me last years end year report was a complete shock as all year well all 2years they kept saying everythings fine.

Its also important to note that things change kids are late developers.

My dd ha good reception bad year 1.

sometimes think no grades given until year 2 be wise but if wasent for last years report i wouldent have known.

It annoyed me this year when she saw her report i wanted an a mummy. not quite as bad as girls in 5th form crying as they dident get a *gscse.

I saw last year how the phonics test made year 1kids like failures and yes they did coach them my dd was 1st year to do it.

Then its all very easy when online to get caught up in grade hysteria if your schools not competative than mumsnet can be with reception kids on higher levels than my year 2 and all free readers.

At the moment the system think my kids average i of course think shes amazing but im bias.

I spent all this year boostimg her confidence and self esteem and more relaxed learning environment has worked.

when you read online ah i your child dont get level 2a .3 in year 2 then they wont get 5,6 at year 6, they may not get into good seniors end up in bottom groups and not gets as at gcses as they map their whole future from nc grades and expect them to make x amount progress like little robots.

I cant remember any of this as akid think most parents just bit stressed trying to do right thing.

Of course you will always get same things reeled out let kids be kids, im saddened by how the system is too.

Somethings for me this may sound harsh but are a given I would anticipate my child would be polite, well behaved, works hard, get on well with others thatss a given and although its good its not part of the report i would dwell on too much.

I like to read individual specific comments amount dd as some can be bit generic and cliche joy to teach.

I dont need a school report to tell me shes improved i could see that and school infomed me throughout the year, I can see shes happier and has lots of freinds so really yes to some extent unless child has some specific educational needs to overcome i focus on the academics and the box workings for the future,.

I also think we value academics because at primary theres precious little else we can go on unlike seniors when they may be showing a particular talent for say sports, art or music.

ds old school did no afterschool clubs.

dds new school does not many clubs for ks1 but does at juniors choir, instrument year 3, netball, football, cricket, chess so if child can find their niche but until then all they judged on is academics.

I often read year 3 teachers annoyed with inflated year 2 grades from infants so maybe being 1st year of this new grading that accuracy and consistancy varies and would vary from school to school.

dds other freind appears visibly behind my dd in some subjects goes private school and her mum couldent wait message me and tell me she had 2as and was so close to getting a 3.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Sat 13-Jul-13 08:35:34

I don't think it is insane at all.

DS1 is bright, school have been telling us this since the day he started back in September.
Now that I have his report I can actually see that he has been stretched and is fully engaged in what he is learning, which is a good thing.

I was a bright child and was utterly failed by the state system. I spent years going over old ground because teachers couldn't be bothered to differentiate my work. I will not allow the same thing to happen to my son.

There is no pressure here though. Only praise for effort, and us providing as many opportunities as we can.

mam29 Sat 13-Jul-13 08:52:51

I always said to old school I dont want her to be a boffin just get opportunity to achieve the best of her ability they dident get that. was very frustrating.

I think its feels like wasted year as somewhere something dident go right.

we as parents and our kids are victims of the system and its the system thats wrong.

the words dont hate the player hate the game spring to mind.

hels71 Sat 13-Jul-13 08:54:49

My DD had exceeding in 15 areas and expected for the other two.

She writes stories that have clear beginings, middles and ends and does use varied vocab. She uses capitals and full stops 95% of the time correctly (tends to forget by the end of a story but can add them in when reminded!) and also sometimes uses speech marks and question marks. She also writes poems (Not always set out with a new line for each line), letters, postcards, labels, lists, instructions and information texts as well as diary entries. Her spelling is always phonetically plausible. (Even DH can read what she writes!!)

In reading she brings home ORT 9/10 which she reads with ease and at home has read books like The Twits and My NAughty Little Sister and Milly Molly Mandy. She can also use simple contents and indexes to find info in reference books and is starting to use a dictionary.

Iamnotminterested Sat 13-Jul-13 09:16:17

Do you want a clap, hels71?

mrz Sat 13-Jul-13 09:21:51

As there is no exemplification for exceeding there is going to be a huge variation between LEAs. schools and teachers

Alibabaandthe40nappies Sat 13-Jul-13 09:24:11

Iam that's a bit harsh.

intheshed Sat 13-Jul-13 09:27:45

And this is why I haven't discussed DD's report with any other parents, and same goes for reading levels! It isn't a competition. As long as you and her teacher think she is happy and doing the best that she can, that is all that matters.

Or is your friend's DD planning on putting 'exceeding in all areas at age 5' on her university application form?!

hels71 Sat 13-Jul-13 09:37:30

Someone earlier on asked if people whose DC had lots of exceedings would share what they were doing so i I don't want a clap...I was simply responding to a request.................

Iamnotminterested Sat 13-Jul-13 10:09:57

Ok, sorry, it just sounded a bit show-offy.
I couldn't say in anywhere as much detail what my dd is doing (bad mother?) other than what is on her report, she comes out of school and says she's had a fantastic day and, err...that's about it really. I obviously know where she is up to with reading as it"s blatantly obvious due to the colour band on her books but the rest is a mystery. She must be doing well though because she had exceeding for all core areas apart fromfrom numbers and some in the fluffy areas.

hels71 Sat 13-Jul-13 10:20:24

I only know what she is doing because she does all that at home....Writing and reading are her favourite things to do...(Strange child maybe?) Mind you......ask her to get her face wet in swimming and all hell breaks loose!!

Spero Sat 13-Jul-13 11:04:18

O yes, I see it now, its not insane at all. I was often asked at scholarship interviews in my teens etc how far I had got with Milly Molly Mandy when I was five. For some panels they could talk of little else.

By all means, take an interest in your child's education. But at primary level to have this ridiculous system of 'levels' which is appears to be made up on the spot by most teachers, setting such little children up to be the totems of either their parents pride or despair is - in my view - deeply unhealthy.

I will be interested to see how this cohort grow into emotionally stable adults given this ludicrous amount of pressure and interest around their academic abilities at the age of FIVE.

Iamnotminterested Sat 13-Jul-13 11:07:49

Spero - my dd is currently wet through in the garden hunting for bugs.

Spero Sat 13-Jul-13 12:09:12

Well get her in quick! Has she read all of Milly Molly Mandy yet? Learned to play chess? And what about her mandarin?

Some parents, really. It's as if you just don't care about the Gobal Race.

simpson Sat 13-Jul-13 12:13:47

My DD also writes a lot.

But she does not write as varied things as hels DD does (I guess why she didn't get exceeding).

Just because a child likes reading and writing does not mean they don't get grubby and have fun, there is such a thing as doing both!!

My DC have just played football for an hour.

TheSteveMilliband Sat 13-Jul-13 13:12:50

Spero, you are the voice of reason again! I'm not against report cards per se and actually the areas to work on bit is useful, at least for non academic areas (take a few more risks and breaking a few rules being one very pertinent one). But I hate how competition creeps in and comparisons are made with other children - most definitely not healthy IMO.

Our reports had a score for each area but also a substantial narrative - maybe 100 words for each group, so 500-700 words altogether! And that's before the class teacher's overall comments, DS's comments and the Head's note. It was a huge document. DH commented that it's longer than the staff appraisals he does at work with his direct reports, and he doesn't have to do thirty...

The narrative is far far more informative and useful than the score, of course. IMHO the score is for the school/LA/DfE, not for parents. I mean, it's nice to have a number in one's head of pfb's score out of 51, but that's not a healthy thing!blush

pickofthepops Sat 13-Jul-13 15:38:08

We were told by much respected teacher that few children get exceeded. DS got none. Am happy. He exceeds my expectations every day.

tiredbutnotweary Sat 13-Jul-13 15:50:36

I saw it was going to get a little contentious last night & chose sleep over engagement with the polarised views and have been too busy today til now to add my two pennies worth ...

Firstly, thank you Hels71 - your DDs writing and reading are (IMO) comfortably at 2C, perhaps 2B/A for reading - which continues to support my theory that this is the level required for exceeding in some schools at least. Are you happy to share her maths ability and any of the others (I understand if not given that discussing such achievements causes consternation and indignation for some MNs)?

What is it specifically about academic subjects & children that riles people so much? Should parents say to children with a love and interest for maths, reading, writing or science, "no stop trying to read, put down that pen, what do you think you're doing asking me how things are made, about planets and space, about how your body works, doing sums in your head, don't use words like peculiar, consendation or occasionally - you're only 5, get back to your dolls/cars/bike/mud pie and only use age appropriate words?".

Some people do indeed hot house their children and apply the pressure referred to - but others do not and it is entirely possible for a child that finds it easy to learn to read / do maths / whatever / to do this and still spend most of their time 'playing' (in quotes because many children learn academics through playing games in any case).

People on this thread have been discussing the current system used to asses reception children, whether the bar for the way DCs are categorised has been raised too high and whether the categorisations are being applied consistently. No one here created the system, but it is the one being used. One way to check how it's being applied is for parents to share what their children are doing and the score that they received.

The reason that I have chosen to understand the current system is due to life experiences which have taught me a) that you should never assume that the mantle "professional" means infallible and b) that new systems set up by government to monitor children's progress should be closely scrutinised. I am not educated to degree level, in fact I don't even have A levels - the guidance makes sense to me but I don't think it's being applied correctly AND I think the measure should be how much progress a child makes not for the government to set some arbitrary bar that children must reach to achieve expected. However that doesn't mean that I think all children should be the same, some children struggle with many things, most children are good at some things and find other things hard, and some children excel at a few (or even many) things - why should any of their parents be frowned upon for discussing that here?

A friend of DD2s has been riding a bike without stabilisers since 3, her ballet dancing is way in advance of DD2s and her swimming is truly outstanding - I think wow, isn't that great and her mum is welcome to tell me all about it.. Meanwhile DD2 is struggling to balance on her bike, making progress slowly with her swimming and galumphing around at ballet having great fun! I celebrate her below average progress (objectively measured) with her in these areas just as much, actually more, than her 'academic' successes. We don't use the word clever - we do reinforce the idea that practice is how to improve if you want to get better at something. Do I always get it right - no, of course not, after all I'm just as fallible as the next person grin

I do, however, apply the same level of concern regarding accuracy and consistency to DD2s ASD assessment - which is all about the areas in which she struggles. Given that I really don't feel I have anything to apologise for - even though I am sorry that some people find these kinds of threads depressing or full of insane people applying pressure to, by implication, sad faced DCs who have no fun and little time to enjoy their childhoods. hmm

tiredbutnotweary Sat 13-Jul-13 16:07:31

I'm not sure I am making my main point clear (if I am I apologise in advance).

If your child has expected, particularly in maths, but in many other areas too, they are likely to have received the equivalent to an exceeded last year (point 9). Many of the expecteds are equivalent to year 1 levels of achievement.

Most of the emerging categories are the equivalent level of achievement for last years (average) point 6.

The other possible consequence with this approach is that parents of children with SEN may find it hard to know how much their children are struggling because emerging is the lowest score possible and two children with emerging can be working at very different levels. Given the difficulty some parents have with getting schools to provide support for their DCs this concerns me too. Of course this entirely depends on the school - many provide support very quickly and with no pushing from parents.

perrinelli Sat 13-Jul-13 16:27:44

I'm happy to share about dd's numeracy bit as I can see that it is interesting to compare how the framework is being applied and useful to some. Her report had the main areas sub divided into the 17 with a 'score' for each with blurb. She got exceeding for both the mathematics bits:
Numbers - talked about her estimating, counting to 20 & beyond, recognizing numerals to 30 & beyond, counting to 200 in 10s and back again
Shape, space & measures - talked about weighing, comparing, ordering and estimating objects, and being able to name and describe the properties of most 3d shapes.

I for one am interested in the variability between schools in different areas as we're moving home so dd will be going into yr 1 in a new school. It will be interesting to see what they make of her & the report.

Spero Sat 13-Jul-13 17:36:38

'Sculpture is to a block of marble as education is to the soul' Joseph Addison.

Spero Sat 13-Jul-13 17:38:25

I have got bad news for some parents. The number of available vacancies for Prime Minister or top violin playing brain surgeons is quite a lot less than the staggering number of child genuii spawned by members of this website.

Teddyking1 Sat 13-Jul-13 18:09:48

It must vary between school to school . Exceeded at ours is working at national curriculum level 2 .Hence 2 years ahead.
In maths they have to be able to add and take away 2 2 digit numbers in their head.!!
Book band at least 12

SockPinchingMonster Sat 13-Jul-13 18:10:50

Spero - I'm not really sure what your problem is as it sounds as if this thread has gotten you quite agitated. I'm sure nobody on here is saying that they want their child to get lots of exceedings as they fancy them as the next Prime Minister etc. The fact is, this is the new way that Foundation children are graded and everyone is just trying to understand if their children are where they are supposed to be. Everyone would like their child to do well at school, people are lying if they say they don't. For what it's worth I can understand why people may feel disappointed if they can see great academic potential in their children but their schools are downplaying their achievements because of some rubbish new grading system. It's really nothing to get your knickers in a twist about. I certainly don't want or expect my children to become a top violinist or prime minister - I do however want them to be happy and to reach their potential - and I would like their school to understand their potential - otherwise why on Earth would I send them to school at all?

5madthings Sat 13-Jul-13 18:25:11

What is the expected/exceedong/emerging all about?!

Ds4 got expected on everything. And i am pleasantly suprised by how well he is reading. Not so interested in writing but i have said consistently to the teacher my concern is that he is happy and enjoying school, settled, making friends and continuing to learn social boundaries. My elder two didnt go to school till age 9 and 6 and so i had no idea of their 'levels' they got there tho and now in yr 9 and yr 6 are doing brilliantly.

Ds3 is in yr three and at target levels he is happy, settled, polite, participatrs in everything, tries hard and is well liked member of class. Everyone says how lovely he is he saves the beastly behaviour for home it seems grin

My concern has always been that they are happy and making progress and that they continue to enjoy learning and school.

Really the best thing is to talk to tge teacher to see if there are any concerns and ask what you can do to support learning at home.

These reports and targets seem to make for lots of angst, do you not get a written bit about your child, what they are doing etc as well as the levels they are at? The box ticking is all well and good but its the personal comments and learning journey ours get that is interesting. Esp the reception one as its full of photos etc of them and 'work' done. Maybe i am too laid back but i cant get my knickers in a twist about attainment and levels of my five year old...

Spero Sat 13-Jul-13 18:35:41

I am not agitated, but thank you for your concern. It is possible for someone to have a viewpoint that you do to agree with or do not find sympathetic, without the holder of that view being subject to some kind of emotional turbulence.

I thought I had made my problem clear - the way children are assessed and banded appears to me at any rate to be opaque and difficult to understand AND assessing and banding five year olds is bloody stupid and unnecessary.

It seems to serve only to depress some parents who worry their children aren't achieving, or to unleash torrents of smuggery from those whose children are emergent level 4c geniuses.

I repeat. We are talking about five year old children.

Tiggles Sat 13-Jul-13 18:46:57

So do this mean that the new English framework is going the way that the Welsh one has.
If a child in reception to get expected progress has to be working at yr 1 level (presuming that is end of current year 1 level), then the yr 1 and 2 levels are going to be raised too?

In Wales now for a child to get a particular level they actually have to completed it, e.g. in year 2 a child who gets outcome 5 (NClevel 2) is actually working within the outcome 6 criteria (NC level 3). To be an outcome 6 you have to have completed it (ie be NClevel4 or at least a 3a). So whereas when we had NC levels and you were expected to be a level 2 at the end of year 2 (but could achieve that even if only 2c), now you have to be NClevel 3 to be on target, and you have to be NClevel4 to be exceeding targets.
Is that what England is now doing too?

changeforthebetter Sat 13-Jul-13 18:50:52

Secondary not primary but a senior manager asked us to fiddle reconsider some of our data because the computer didn't like what we had input shock We talked about it and readjusted by a sub level (entirely objective anyway) here and there. Is your child happy at school, does your child have a love of learning and look forward to Y1? That matters more than data produced to satisfy number crunchers IMHO. DD2 is very bright but I'm not expecting bells and whistles in her report because I know the angst a skewed set of data can cause. She will be fine and won't care #hatefuckingdatarulingeverything angry

lljkk Sat 13-Jul-13 18:54:37

My only angst is that DS must have been graded too high.
the written bit said he was excellent at maths.
He's pants at maths! What a hoot.
Ds is scraping along on about ORT 2 for reading.

CharlotteBronteSaurus Sat 13-Jul-13 18:58:59

It must vary enormously from school to school and teacher to teacher

dd1 got Exceeding for everything (non-stealth superboast, yes we do want a clap wink), BUT when I read on here what other MNers' DC' are doing at the same age she seems distinctly average. She's engaged and interested and works hard, but is about as far from a child prodigy as it's possible to be. she's at a school which achieves pretty average results, so I assume would be marked less highly at a high achieving school.

katydid02 Sat 13-Jul-13 19:03:21

I would be sceptical too; like somebody else, my DC is top table etc etc, got level 4s in the year 3 report but hardly any 'exceedings' for the 'I Can' statements but was 'working above national average' across the board. They must have to be capable of nuclear physics to get 'exceeding' grin

katydid02 Sat 13-Jul-13 19:04:16

CharlotteBronteSaurus (great name...) that wasn't aimed at you by the way, just thinking of the OPs friend.

CharlotteBronteSaurus Sat 13-Jul-13 19:06:13

no offence taken - that's exactly the point I was trying to make about what sounds like very subjective categorisation smile

gintastic Sat 13-Jul-13 19:15:43

Perinelli - my DD had all that in the blurb for the maths bits but only an "expected" mark!

She got 7 exceeding, 8 expected and 2 emerging. I couldn't be more proud of her :-)

mixedmamameansbusiness Sat 13-Jul-13 19:21:36

Our reports are due Monday. Ds2 is progressing well as far as I can tell but I am aware he is likely emerging and maybe expected as DS1 was/is usually exceeding and I can see the difference. As a previous poster said I will be looking for individual achievement. DS2 is also shy and has found socially settling hard and if the report refers to progress with these issues I will be delighted.

In terms of levels I will only have issues if they are far below expected as if they need action I would have expected to have been informed before at a parents evening for example. A report shouldn't come as a shock and IMO the little box that allows the teacher to make a personal comment about my children that shows that they know/get them in done way is the one that always makes me smile.

BabiesAreLikeBuses Sat 13-Jul-13 22:49:35

Wow this has moved on from last night!

mrz I can't believe there's no exemplification for exceeding, no wonder schools are varying so much in what they expect!

Dd's maths I would say is solid but not her forte, she's much more into reading and craft... But got exceeding for number as she can go beyond 20, knows number bonds well, orders, uses them in play and knew about months and seasons. She got expected in the other maths one - said she needed to develop prob solving which amused me as they haven't had formal maths lessons and I don't push it at home

I've decided I don't like the language. Expected sounds like you should have got it anyway and haven't worked for it, I had to use the word in my ks2 reports about some kids who had worked bloody hard all year and I felt they needed a more glowing recognition of their efforts!

perrinelli Sat 13-Jul-13 23:20:55

Exactly, gintastic - it's interesting for me to know that, and hopefully helpful for other people to see, especially those who are wondering if their schools mark 'harshly' or felt the descriptors didn't represent their dc.

Flowerpower07 Sat 13-Jul-13 23:37:27

Hi I am new to this site. I wander if anyone can help me to understand my DS reception report. he scored 11 exceeding and 6 expected. The exceeding subjects were personal and social, emotional development, communication and language, Reading, maths and understanding the world. I haven't a clue what all of the expected and exceeding means.

As it doesn't explain. Thank you

It means he is doing really well.

You could check this long and dry document for in-depth details.

Spero Sun 14-Jul-13 13:34:21

Hah! Re non explanation. My daughters report said that she had achieved this and that level - no explanation of where she was in comparison with the rest of the class, no link to average national standards, no help for me too understand if she was trying very hard and this was the best she could do or if she was coasting and could do better, or if she was struggling.

I was a governor for a year, had to drop out due to illness but I wouldn't go back. There is no way I could do an effective job as I found it utterly impossible to understand the data, how it was calculated or what it meant so there was no way I could ever 'supportively challenge' the Head Teacher.

It's all a massive pile of poo, I type in non agitated fashion.

Spero Sun 14-Jul-13 13:36:38

Thanks for the link. 62 pages! Jesus wept.

mrz Sun 14-Jul-13 13:44:33

Sorry HorryIsUpduffed but the profile document is just the statutory element and isn't in any great depth hmm there is exemplification materials on the DfE website to explain what to look for when judging expected but as said unfortunately none for emerging and exceeding.

Spero Sun 14-Jul-13 13:47:27

Hahahahah! But with jargon as impressive as this, who needs it to be based on any kind of objective and verifiable facts?

mrz Sun 14-Jul-13 13:56:09


The exemplification materials for each ELG are available as PDF downloads on each of the following pages. On each page, the ELG is listed, along with a brief explanatory note, to help ensure that the information is interpreted accurately and consistently by all users.

The learning journey examples are included at the end of these pages. You can also download a full set of exemplification materials in zip file format from this web page. Due to the number of PDFs, there are four zip files.

To make judgements about attainment for each ELG, practitioners must be familiar with the description of the area of learning and the level of development expected at the end of the EYFS. Practitioners should read the EYFS Development matters guidance, which describes the developmental continuum leading to each ELG.

When viewing each set of exemplification material, it is important to understand that the set as a whole illustrates the ‘expected’ descriptor. No one piece of evidence meets the ELG as a standalone item; together they illustrate the pitch and breadth of a particular ‘expected’ level of learning and development.


Sorry, it was DH's link. He found the descriptions in annexes I think - p72 IIRC?

Spero Sun 14-Jul-13 15:38:22

'Learning journey!' <wipes eyes mirthfully>

We are all doomed.

mam29 Sun 14-Jul-13 17:11:38

What I dont get and wondered before is

nursery and preschool are both meant to follow efys.
receptions suppost to do same.

why do nursery and preschools not give efys scores are tehy not required or qualified enough.

dd2 4 september just gets a tick in the box that says working in age bracket 30-50months.

when dd1 left recepteption we got abook with photos and obserations just like when we left nursery.

can we not just make teachers lives and parents lives easier and just get year 1 of year 1 teachers to assess then why do we need all thsi for reception year?

im sure my mum and dad got much more simplified reports than this and not sifting through framework and criteria its paper work, target mad,

dd1 often talked about her targets like she was some sort of mini employee.

mrz Sun 14-Jul-13 17:17:11

Because the profile is intended to sum up development at the end of the EYFS . One of the main purposes of the EYFS profile is to help Year 1 teachers plan an effective, responsive and appropriate curriculum that will meet the needs of all children.

mam29 Sun 14-Jul-13 17:23:34

maybe in theory but they all progress at diferent rates.

I cant really say much about term 1 of year 1 as seemed so long ago but by end of the year

they were all set on coloured tables in ability groups.

dd 1 got 8-9 in efys scores so quite good.

but year 1 she gradually declined and got further behind,

had hardly any reading books.
ended year 1 on level 3 ort.

maybe they focussed on the top performing kids and the ones at the bottom with low efys scores.

throughout entire year r and yera 1 kept telling me everythings fine.

she got 39/40 in phonics.
but ended year 1 1b for everything when the schools target was 1a.

i wonder if its ,more a tickbox exercise maybe in some cases the teachers find it useful tool but think they need to reassess for themselves in a way to double check the eyfys grade was correct .

Spero Sun 14-Jul-13 17:24:43

Ah, I see. I thought it was so they could quickly identify who can get left on the 'top table' to get on with it while all teachers time and energy is diverted to the few with emotional and behavioural difficulties who want to smash up the classroom. Maybe that's just my school.

Spero Sun 14-Jul-13 17:27:18

Cloured tables for ability groups in years 1? Nice. Nice to be labelled so young and so decisively. Wonder what that does for any motivation or love of learning.

mrz Sun 14-Jul-13 17:39:01

All my tables are the same colour and not ability grouped ...

mrz Sun 14-Jul-13 17:41:17

The profile shouldn't be a tickbox exercise but I fear it is

mam29 Sun 14-Jul-13 17:42:03

Yes spero I was shocked i mean we just talking one school maybe other schools do it differently i dont recall call her mentioning it the 1st term but definatly after xmas was colours or literacy and shapes for numeracy. other kids said same they never really told parents that openly though and they claim the kids dident know but mine blatently knew red table were getting harder different work.

They were quite a competative class all knew what reading level and box number they on as she got teased for reading baby books.

when she went into year 2 first thing she did was come homw and cry telling me im useless im on bottom table for everything.
I then realised the class had diffrent homework.
the ones who failed the year 1 phonics group went off to do their letters and sounds with senco, the ones who just missed passing went off with ta and the ones who passed including my dd stayed with the teacher in the mian classroom.

the ones who dident pass had easier spellings so when they did spelling test on fridays everyone knew.

But it was the maths homework that gae it a away was sort of reception/year 1 level go see what shapes you can find around yoir home where as freinds daughter on top table had how many sides does this shape have so brought it up with teacher that its too easy want her reassed and she went up a table.she admitted that the school do set them by ability.

Because dd1 passed phonis test she wasent eligible for extra help with reading as they focus on kids who failed phonics or got a 1 c in year 1 then you have the parents of the top table whinging thres no gifted and talented and how are they being stretched.

we left term into year 2 as the targets , stress and competition really upset my daughter,

her new school was mixed year 1/2 class where they did loosly set but wasent as obvious and the class were no where near as competative and the teacher not pushy and she got extra reading help as they said whats reading got to do with phonics test they not alwways linked-common sense at last.

I spoke to some parents and they said in year 1 at new school they dont give nc levels out only in year 2.

lottieandmia Sun 14-Jul-13 17:46:54

OP, do you feel that perhaps the school is not getting the best out of your dd? If so I can understand your disappointment.

mam29 Sun 14-Jul-13 17:50:26

Thanks mrs z you always helpful and honest.

I guess depends on strength of teacher.

dd year 1 teacher seemed nice, dd liked her but she had a reputation as not being one of the best .

was a pure year 1 class with the 15 youngest being in mixed r1 class.

at parents evening I got distinct impression she was struggling by things he said.

thinks like well the r1 teacher has it easier as she actually only had 13 not 15kids from year 1 the youngest in the year alongside 15oldest in reception and she said the ta used to take the reception to play and she would teach them in small group of 13 a lot of time so had it easier.

she just seemed tired and stressed a lot of the time.
Guess she had added pressure of year 1 phonics test as they did lots of prep for that.

but year 2 it was mostly the ones from r1 younger ones in year on top tables and highre reading levels as the group combined again as the oldest 15 moved to the mixed 2-3class so being bottom against the younger ones was even more of shock,

youarewinning Sun 14-Jul-13 18:02:39

I heard next year you'll also get the age bracket your child is working in. For example the eyfs age catogories. (36-45 months etc)

I laughed at this and said to my friend that if my DS got the emerging - working at 57months or whatever it would look bad on paper but be bang on correct, as he's a late aug baby!!!!

As it is IMO it's all bollocks - DS got all 6/7's under old system. Just finished year 4 2 years behind in writing, year behind in reading and 2 years ahead in maths and been referred to camhs with possible asd. What they assessed him at when he was 4 yrs and 9 months told us nothing of future value.

I'm eyfs trained but have doesn't many years in sen schools in key stage 3/4 so out of touch with it all now.

mrz Sun 14-Jul-13 18:41:25
mrz Sun 14-Jul-13 18:48:43

This is from the Sunday Times…

Michael Gove, the education secretary, is considering proposals for pupils to take more difficult tests at 11 in maths, English and science where they could be ranked on performance.

Teachers would be able to tell whether, for example, their pupils are in the top or bottom 10% in the country. Experts believe it would help to identify the brightest and the weakest pupils and would force schools to raise standards.

Ministers are also considering plans for a national test at the age of five so teachers know children’s capabilities when they start school. It would provide them with the basis of charting pupils’ progress and help to set targets for them.

The tests might involve, for example, asking five-year-olds how many numbers they recognise up to 10, or whether they can point to objects such as a butterfly or a padlock in a picture. Plans for the tests will not be released tomorrow when David Cameron publishes the national curriculum at a school in north London, but they will be sent out for consultation at a later date.

A senior government source said one option was to publish the scores of 11-year-olds in percentiles. The source said: “We have to see how children are doing compared with others. In Australia at A-level everyone’s results are put into a computer which gives you a ranking, 1, 2, 3, 4… If you were to be in the top 10% at age 11 then you should expect your secondary school to help prepare you for a top university.”

Ministers are agreed that the current levels that 11-year-olds are expected to reach are too low, vague and confusing.

The tests for 11-year-olds would start in 2016. The pass mark will be higher than for the old standard assessment tests and pupils who reach it will be expected to get at least five C grades at GCSE.

youarewinning Sun 14-Jul-13 19:03:06

mrz - is it true that children will be expected to have achieved the 60 months criteria to get expected from next year? If so - how does this work for summer borns?

I think if they are going to set tests for 5 yo's it should be done in year 1 - when they are all 5 years old. I suppose it makes it easier than these statements we have now. At least you either get it right it don't! Not that I'm a fan if testing children so young unless there is real proven benefit and additional support in place after results are published.

mrz Sun 14-Jul-13 19:11:38

Children are expected to have achieved the 40-60+ month criteria to reach expected level THIS year.

The development matters bandings are very broad
birth to 11month
8-20 month
16-26 month
22-36 month
30-50 month
40-60+ month

and as you see there is a big overlap

mrz Sun 14-Jul-13 19:12:39

If they do tests in Y1 some children will already be 6 ...and some will be just 5

youarewinning Sun 14-Jul-13 19:22:06

Oh it was this year! - whoops! I knew the bandings as eyfs trained but haven't work eyfs for years now and very out if touch!

I get the year 1 thing about children being 6 or maybe do it at beginning of year 1? I guess I just think a test for 5 yo fine in year r (prob April/ may time?) doesn't take into account that prob 1/4 if not more of the year will be 4! Maybe I'm just being pedantic!!! Perhaps they should say year r tests. blush

mrz Sun 14-Jul-13 19:28:26

If they must do tests in reception I hope it is at the end of the summer term when the majority are 5 (although almost a quarter of my class this year have birthdays during the six weeks holidays) preferably they stop testing in primary

youarewinning Sun 14-Jul-13 19:32:57

I agree about not testing in primary. I only remember having weekly spelling and mental maths tests. It encouraged us to continue to learn each week - not just make an effort for 1 test which determined groups for the next year.
And no one fussed if you got something wrong - you just practiced it!

mrz Sun 14-Jul-13 19:35:20

Under the old EYFS profile children need to be working in 40-60+ months to achieve the Early Learn Goals

Periwinkle007 Sun 14-Jul-13 19:46:36

can I just ask (dare I ask) what people would prefer instead of children having ability based work? I mean if you have a class of 30 do people seriously expect them all to do the exact same work when some will find it easy and some too hard? how CAN they differentiate? I mean I am not aware of a teacher who would tell a class which group is which but children will work it out. My daughter is an autumn birthday and doing well so I wouldn't want her to have to sit and tread water so to speak for a couple of years whilst others catch her up, how does that help her? equally if she was one of the bottom in the class I wouldn't want her to have to 'cope' with work that may be too hard for her. They have to group them to some extent or only about a fifth of the class will be catered for in any one lesson.

CircassianLeyla Sun 14-Jul-13 20:54:27

I agree with Periwinkle. Our school has named the groups, I can't remembed if it is colour, animals or something that isn't supposed to be obvious.

I know DS1 knows he is in the top group but I don't know if others know but he also thinks he is geuniny terrible at maths. DS2 just leaving reception will likely be somewhere in the middle I imagine so it will be interesting to see if he notices. But I do think it is important to cater to individual needs.

Spero Sun 14-Jul-13 23:57:07

I don't want a system that tests and grades five year olds, making them painfully aware just as they are out of nappies just how low or high on the scale of 'worth' they are.

I want an education system that allows children to learn and to grow, as human beings, not some cog in the wheel of the Great Global Race.

I would like recognition of the (I thought obvious) fact that not everyone is destined or suited to Classics at Oxford and there should be greater interest in helping children achieve in areas other than simply academic.

I would like to see resources directed at helping teachers teach, not simply exercise crowd control. This will probably involve investment in many other areas than just simply schools - children who come to school hungry and dirty are not in best place to learn or achieve.

And I would dearly, dearly love a system of assessment for when the children are older - say 7 plus? - that is not infected with irritating jargon.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Mon 15-Jul-13 14:31:57

Spero - it is all very well to say that you don't want a system that grades five year olds.

But as the mother of a very bright almost five year old, I want him to be doing work that he finds challenging. If he finds things too easy then he disengages and his behaviour goes up the spout. I absolutely want him to be doing differentiated work, and if the way the school can achieve that is by grouping the pupils in ability groups then I welcome them.

He isn't so great at drawing, or at PE and he knows it and accepts that he has to work harder at those things to make progress. Why shouldn't other children feel that way about maths, or literacy or whatever?

Periwinkle007 Mon 15-Jul-13 15:34:10

just got my daughter's report and there are NO levels in it anywhere. just blurb. opposite of what lots of people have got then.

musicalfamily Mon 15-Jul-13 16:25:00

My DS2 got a handful of exceeding, but only reading for an academic area, the rest for things like communication, etc...

He is only reading ORT 3 books but he is quite confident reading a bit beyond that, so maybe that was taken into account.

To be honest, I was surprised at the amount of exceedings he received in different areas, because he was very ill all of last year and stopped growing and developing, so he effectively started school one year behind developmentally. I think the teacher as amazed at the progress he made and maybe wanted to be encouraging. I would say he is pretty much average across the board, if I'm honest... but of course I am immensely proud of him.

CircassianLeyla Mon 15-Jul-13 16:38:06

Periwinkle - we also got our reports today and no levels. I am fine with this though as the blurb makes quite clear what his strengths/weaknesses etc are.

CircassianLeyla Mon 15-Jul-13 16:39:04

<<has a wonder about whether Periwinkle and I know each other>>

Spero Mon 15-Jul-13 17:24:40

Yes the 'very bright' must be challenged and pushed etc, etc. But not at the expense of the other 90% of children who will be made painfully aware at a very early age that they are considered less worthy.

If the only children we care about are the 'very bright', just have a think about what our society is going to be like in 20 years time.

We need to move away from this ridiculous notion that all children must go to university and anything else is a failure. All children should be helped to find their talents and to realise them. For a lot - the majority? - this will not be via academic success.

tiredbutnotweary Mon 15-Jul-13 17:25:21

Periwinkle, if you ask for it the school must provide you with a copy of the profile assessment, which will have the levels.

See here for full details:

simpson Mon 15-Jul-13 17:27:05

I also thought that schools had to provide levels...

tiredbutnotweary Mon 15-Jul-13 17:41:19

Spero, in my experience of education the state sector generally provides very well for the mid 80% - it's the ones struggling (bottom 10%), the very bright (top 10%) and most especially the twice exceptional i.e. bright but often with (undiagnosed) learning difficulties that are failed most often .... it would be more apparent that this was the case if there were no independent schools catering for all three groups - with some parents withdrawing from state school after trying that route first.

Of course some children in each of these groups do just fine in state schools, some state schools manage superbly too - but it is a post code lottery.

The issue of some education being more worthy than others fits with the prevalent idea that some jobs (and indeed the male gender generally) are more worthy too. So the situation where teachers and nurses are paid less than, well a host of jobs I'd consider less worthy for sure! And that woman are still statistically paid well below male colleagues for the same work. And so it goes on ....

Alibabaandthe40nappies Mon 15-Jul-13 17:41:19

Spero - I am not saying that we only care about the very bright - not sure why you deem it necessary to use ' '?

But children who excel in sports, music, art and so forth are lauded for their efforts and achievement, awarded prizes, graded and so on. Why is it only children who are academically gifted who have to apologise for their achievements and pretend that they are working at the same level as the rest of the class?
I absolutely agree that all children should be helped to find their talents, but if that happens to be maths then that should be celebrated in the same way as excellent in anything else.

I don't understand what university has to do with the discussion. It is only suitable for a relatively small proportion of the population.

Could someone explain what exceeded is an equivalent to then, in national curriculum levels?

Periwinkle007 Mon 15-Jul-13 17:54:30

going by the blurb my daughter is only expected for everything musicalfamily and she is reading chapter books, the blurb in hers doesn't make it sound anything other than normal to be on book band 11...

Periwinkle007 Mon 15-Jul-13 17:55:21

I believe from what I read on here peppermintcreamssaga that expected seems to equate to 1bish and exceeded seems to equate to 2c, or something like that anyway.

Periwinkle007 Mon 15-Jul-13 17:56:54

well judging by my daughter's report I no longer need to worry about the very bright being pushed because she obviously isn't.

we may well know each other circassianleyla - you on the south coast?

Spero Mon 15-Jul-13 18:09:08

I say 'very bright' because it seems that everyone I meet has a 'very bright' child which statistically can't be true, so excuse my cynicism. I think John o'Farrell hit nail on head with his excellent satirical phrase 'approaching gifted'.

I mention university because I thought it clear that successive gov policies for number of years now has been to push university education on all and that testing and grading five year olds was simply the sad and inevitable result of this kind of policy.

teafor1 Mon 15-Jul-13 19:14:41

Well, I seem to have a very average child. Reading this thread is making me depressed honestly. He got expected for all but three, which he got emerging in. I'm really pleased about the expected ones and worried about the emerging ones. Plus seeing that all these kids are way beyond my son with reading etc are getting expected is making me wonder if my son should have gotten it at all. Though I do understand it is a huge range.

There isn't a whole hell of a lot I can do about 2 of his emerging results because it is communication/making relationships related. He is quite introverted. The other is numbers. I'm not sure if I should go nuts trying to get him up to speed or what. Apparently he is confident working with numbers up to 10 (halving, adding etc) but not up to 20.

intheshed Mon 15-Jul-13 19:20:00

It makes me really sad to hear people saying things like "she is only expected". These kids are five years old fgs. They have achieved exactly what was expected of them in their first year of school and this is somehow disappointing?!

BabiesAreLikeBuses Mon 15-Jul-13 19:28:44

teafor1 the one thing that is clear from this thread is that schools are judging exceeded very differently and that it's unusual to get many exceededs. They're very little for predicting future success - they have up to 13 more years of school to nail it! At the start of reception my primary goal for dd was that she felt confident socially and was able to talk to adults as she can be very shy. I was also hoping her reading would get going and that she'd get plenty of art and craft in as she loves it. All these have been achieved. If i read more than that into her report they'd like her to be more independent and solve problems in maths. I'm not planning to do anything about these - she can get on with it in y1.
Ds is also in reception - my goals for him were that he didn't hit anyone, learnt to make friends and poo on a public toilet. I don't have his report yet but he's done all those things and loves school, he's positive about everything.
I don't know about anyone else but mine are both knackered and looking forward to a few weeks off to play out in the garden. We'll still read at bedtime but that's it.

Periwinkle007 Mon 15-Jul-13 19:28:45

that was me intheshed and yes I am disappointed she only got expected.

BUT I am not disappointed in her or her actual achievements, I am disappointed in a system that means a child on book band 11 and reading chapter books and doing everything required to go with that is marked as expected level in reception when I think it should be seen as more than that. It seems like it would be in some schools. Other areas I could say she hasn't made any progress in at all in the whole of reception because she was working above the 'expected' level with them when she started school. The schools are supposed to be working on the same levels and should be moderated so how can there be such variation in it all?

Pozzled Mon 15-Jul-13 19:30:56

Well, I have further proof that schools are being inconsistent in their levelling. We got DD1's report today- 1 emerging, 1 expected and the rest exceeding. I've been looking pretty closely at the EYFS guidance, and I believe she is actually exceeding in 3 or 4 areas- certainly not 15. So the school have obviously marked very leniently compared to others mentioned on here.

DD1's school apparently has an intake with a low baseline (according to Ofsted) so I wonder if they've been swayed by the class average?

FWIW I agree with other posters that levels are not important at this age. What matters to me is whether DD1 is well-behaved, happy and enjoys learning.

But we have a system that is supposed to tell us if our children are on track, ahead or behind for their age. I think this is a reasonable thing to want to know- but the system seems to be failing miserably.

teafor1 Mon 15-Jul-13 19:43:47

Thanks BabiesAreLikeBuses. Even though my son got the 3 emergings I did see a huge improvement in those areas this year so I'm trying to keep that in perspective. And as I said, I'm thrilled about all the expected.

simpson Mon 15-Jul-13 20:15:46

My DC Head Teacher told me that emerging is the equivalent of the old EYFS score of 6 (where a child is expected to be at the end of reception), expected is the same as a 9 on the old scale (or a 1A/B NC level wise) and exceeding is a 2C.

DD's writing fluctuates and can be a 2C (sometimes) but as she only writes stories (with a beginning, middle and ending) and love notes she got expected.

And yes I was suprised tbh as all year the school have been telling me how academic she is etc etc but I have had a meeting with the HT and calmed down blush and quite frankly when she is 7 her report at 5 is not going to matter that much smile

simpson Mon 15-Jul-13 20:20:20

Pozzled - my DD's class has 90 kids and she got the only exceeding, I volunteer in another school (reception) and they have 120 kids and 6 got exceeding.

The EYFS Head in the school I volunteer in said they (and a lot of other schools) are waiting for the scores to be published Nationally I guess to see if they have been too strict/lenient.

mrz Mon 15-Jul-13 20:22:56

A child was never expected to have a score of 6 simpson ...they were expected to achieve all the ELGs so 8 was expected but most children achieved 6 and 9 was beyond expected in reception

simpson Mon 15-Jul-13 20:29:18

Ok, the way it was worded to me was that expectations were a 6 or 7 before.

However she (HT) did say it was only a basic example as the two EYFS are completely different.

Pozzled Mon 15-Jul-13 20:31:38

Simpson, my DD most definitely isn't a 2c yet for either writing or maths- both areas where she got exceeding. She's probably around a 1b for both.

If it helps, I don't think it's any better to be over-assessing than under-assessing children. It will set up unrealistic expectations and potentially too much pressure for the Y2 SATs. The report we had also gave us very little indication of what to work on- I would have liked more specific details of what she can/can't do, especially in maths as I haven't worked with her on that as much.

I just hope some of the inconsistencies are ironed out by the time DD2 is in reception.

mrz Mon 15-Jul-13 20:34:15

I'm afraid your HT either doesn't know much about EYFS or is trying to pull the wool over your eyes simpson

intheshed Mon 15-Jul-13 20:34:50

Simpson, how do you know she got the only exceeding?! hmm I would be v surprised if the school gave out that information and I'm sure you can't have asked all the parents of the other 90 children!

simpson Mon 15-Jul-13 20:35:56

And then also there are areas that can be an NC level like "friendships" how is that assessed??

There are 4 kids in reception who are reading stage 8/9 books and none of them got exceeding which astounds me tbh...

mrz Mon 15-Jul-13 20:38:36

because the assessment isn't based on reading scheme levels

simpson Mon 15-Jul-13 20:40:09

Yes I get that but surely their comprehension and inference would match the book level, otherwise it's the incorrect level for them iyswim??

simpson Mon 15-Jul-13 20:42:17

DD has done a number of assessments which are based on ORT assessments, not a book but a piece of text (which has the level at the top).

Teacher then has to tick how many words she got correct, ask however many questions there are and write down word for word what DD says back...

BabiesAreLikeBuses Mon 15-Jul-13 20:56:59

Eyfs and nc levels are different systems. I don't see how one can directly equate to another...
Certainly dd is not 2c for writing and got exceeded but she does love writing and you can understand what she has written. I reckon going on nc levels she's prob a 1b but she hasn't done enough formal stuff yet for all that.

simpson Mon 15-Jul-13 21:01:54

Babies - exactly especially when they have not been taught to that level confused

tiredbutnotweary Mon 15-Jul-13 21:06:39

Mrz - am I right in thinking 78 points was considered a good level of development for the old EYFS profile - made by achieving 6 points in all ELGs or more in some but less in others (to get an exact score of 78)?

Do you know what the average point score used to be (roughly as I'm sure it varied somewhat by year)?

mrz Mon 15-Jul-13 21:08:16

EYFS is about development not levels or inference or ORT assessments they just don't correlate I'm afraid

simpson Mon 15-Jul-13 21:11:36

But this is where the confusion lies as some schools are not giving exceeding unless a child is a NC 2C which by that definition is about levels (NC ones).

mrz Mon 15-Jul-13 21:16:40

This is from the National Assessment Authority

Point scores are levels of achievement and not the points in the profile, i.e. a score of 6 does not mean profile 6, it means point 3, plus 3 aspects achieved of sections 4-8. Children with the same points score will therefore probably have a different level of achievement.

There is ongoing research into the relationship between FSP and KS1 outcomes, and it would appear that some of the links are spurious.

• The FSP is more about assessment for learning than average points scores.

Some scale points, known as “super scale points”, with research, appear to have a greater link to KS1 outcomes than others, particularly those that involve creativity, thinking and applying, rather than rote learning. Some specific scale points (the “super scale points”) seem to indicate that without them, a child is unlikely to achieve more than 2c at KS1.

It is therefore not enough to say that the acquisition of 6 scale points is indicative as an acceptable basis for the next stage; it depends upon the particular scale points achieved.

Periwinkle007 Mon 15-Jul-13 21:18:16

I agree Simpson - if it is purely development based then that would explain many schools seemingly giving out exceeds more willingly but there appear to be quite a few with much stricter criteria for it.

teafor1 Mon 15-Jul-13 21:18:23

Can someone tell me what the old expectations were for numbers in the EYFS please? Also what will they be learning in year 1, maths wise. I am planning on doing some work with my son this summer but will try to keep it low key. I don't want to put him off.

Periwinkle007 Mon 15-Jul-13 21:19:46

Mrz - I must be dim, I don't think I even understand that

mrz Mon 15-Jul-13 21:19:59

A score of 78 was considered to be working securely within the ELGs

Cat98 Mon 15-Jul-13 21:22:50

It's all very confusing.
Because we're in Wales the system is slightly different, and I don't really know what ds got in the other areas. Only that he had exceeding in all the literacy/communication ones, and in numeracy. I would be surprised if the others were marked as exceeding but I don't think it's really done like that here.
I agree it's important bright children are catered for even at such a tender age- well, it's important all children are catered for, whatever their level. The benchmark should be every child's individual targets, regardless of where they should be according to 'levels'.
It's true that it might not matter when they're older, but equally it might - this is the start of their education and surely it will only help if they are enthused and kept engaged early on, and this means some kind of assessment is absolutely necessary. It shouldn't be in the form of a 'test' though of course. I don't think schools should make pupils aware they are being tested (eg the yr 1 phonics test). So much pressure for young kids.
I like the welsh system actually - learning through play until 7.

mrz Mon 15-Jul-13 21:23:48

It means that 2 or 200 children achieving the same score on the profile were unlikely to be at the same level of achievement and a score of 6 is/was meaningless and that it depends on which 6 scale points

simpson Mon 15-Jul-13 21:24:45

So basically on the old system (which my DD's school have been using all year) a child on a 6 would have done points 1-3 and any other 3?

I guess that's a bit like NC levels in that you could have 2 kids on a 1A in say numeracy but they won't have mastered the same things necessarily...

mrz Mon 15-Jul-13 21:28:58


TheRoundTable Mon 15-Jul-13 22:12:16

I was wondering the exact same thing. My reception DD had 'exceeding' for reading and writing and I do not think her reading and writing are anywhere close to Year 2 level!

Yes, it feels 'nice' to read exceeding or expected on their reports (being totally honest), it really doesn't matter very much. Learned the hard way not to fret about reports/grades/levels.

TheRoundTable Mon 15-Jul-13 22:14:49

Ooops! Meant to quote:

Simpson - I definitely think there are inconsistencies in the way EYFS is being graded then as my DD was graded 'exceeding' for writing but she would have no idea how to write a report and I doubt she would even be that aware what poetry is - let alone write some :-/ She is near the top of her class ability wise and is summer born so one of the youngest, I wouldn't say she's miles above average though.. It all seems a bit of a farce to me to be honest- SockPinchingMonster

simpson Mon 15-Jul-13 22:46:42

Tbh this is the thing that is annoying me.

That different schools seem to be assessing so differently.

My DC school assess one way and the next school along (distance wise) assess in a different wonder it leads to confusion amongst parents when teachers/schools are confused too confused

jamtoast12 Mon 15-Jul-13 23:28:29

Ialso agree levels differ between schools. DD reception got exceeding in all literacy and numeracy and is nowhere near working at the level of my dd in year 2!!! She is reading ort level 4 in reception which is pretty average I think, certainly not in the gifted category though I'm chuffed shes progressing.

She also doesn't write with capitals, full stops etc yet got exceeding for this too! Take it all with pinch of salt and I certainly would never compare to kids in other schools... Dd year 2 school admit they hardly award level 3 s as it puts unnecessary pressure on for future years so they are certainly "working it" across the board. Funny how in our school very few get level 3s at year 2 yet the percentage of level 5&6 at y6 is one of the highest in the country!

scottishmummy Mon 15-Jul-13 23:32:35

You've got the competitive mum bug,it's clouding your judgement
You know your daughter as a parent,yes
And teacher knows her educationally as a pupil,and is best placed to tell you how it is

simpson Mon 15-Jul-13 23:44:20

Jamtoast - I wonder if our DC are at the same school grin their KS1 scores are not the best (they seem to have a real problem with yr1 teachers) but KS2 is strong...

Scottishmummy - whilst I do agree with you I also disagree, DD's next target on her report for numeracy is to be able to tell the time which she has been doing for over 6 months...but I suspect they have not checked. Not that it matters in the grand scheme of things.

scottishmummy Mon 15-Jul-13 23:48:51

Most mums on mn big their weans up,that's to be expected
And yes that inevitabily incurs bit frisson about teachers

simpson Mon 15-Jul-13 23:52:26

I cannot moan about DD's teacher she has been truly fab (DD has had her for 2 years nursery and reception).

My bug bear is how the kids are assessed and that the school were using the old system to assess reception until last week hmm when suddenly they switch to the new one (which has nothing to do with her class teacher - am sure orders came from above grin).

christinarossetti Mon 15-Jul-13 23:53:41

How on earth do people know what grade the other 89 children in a year group achieved?

And - unless you're concerned that your child is having difficulties - why on earth would you care about it enough to post it on an internet forum?

christinarossetti Mon 15-Jul-13 23:56:01

How on earth are teachers supposed to translate a whole year of assessment information into a different format in the space of a week?

I would be seriously concerned about the leadership at a school which did that tbh. Did they only just realise that the Early Years framework changed in Sept '12?

christinarossetti Mon 15-Jul-13 23:57:08

Sorry, I appreciate that that's two 'how on earths?' in a row (and suspect that there's no more sense on other planets), but the MN obsession with reading levels and how other children are doing is reaching Champion League proportions at the moment.

simpson Mon 15-Jul-13 23:58:56

Christina - this is my concern...

The only reason I know about the other results was I asked the teacher (although said I did not expect her to be able to tell me) how many kids got exceeding in the year group and was told the answer.

I care because the next school down the road seem to be assessing in a different way so makes me confused

simpson Mon 15-Jul-13 23:59:47

Actually it is not DD's reading levels I am concerned with but how they assessed her writing...

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 00:00:43

Starts for some in baby group,oooh so advanced and progresses into primary brilliance
Primary1 is first year's not a definitive statement of ability
It's also not a competition,irrespective of how someone else wean is doing

simpson Tue 16-Jul-13 00:02:41

I don't really give a stuff how other kids are doing.

I just want to know how my DD is assessed as her school report does not reflect the assessments.

christinarossetti Tue 16-Jul-13 00:05:40

Then it's difficult to understand why you needed to ask about the reading results and then put that information on an internet forum.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 00:05:52

Why did you ask teacher how other kids are doing?if comparison is of no interest

christinarossetti Tue 16-Jul-13 00:06:27

Sorry, that makes no sense. You don't give a stuff how other kids are doing but you asked the teacher anyway?

christinarossetti Tue 16-Jul-13 00:08:11

Okay, I'm off to bed now and don't want to gang up on Simpson, but you're a bit unconvincing when you say that you don't give a stuff how other children in the class are doing when you so regularly post about, eh, how other children in the class are doing.

scottishmummy Tue 16-Jul-13 00:08:44

Quite,that's v contradictory
If you merely wanted a rounded overview the comparative results of no use?
But you specifically asked teacher about other children results too?

simpson Tue 16-Jul-13 00:22:27

Because I wanted a picture of how the school are assessing and I already knew how the school I work in was assessing EYFS which seemed different to me that's all. Tbh I was not expecting the teacher to tell me but she did.

The year group that I want to work with are reception aged children so I want to get my head round this assessment lark too as well as asking about my own DD really.

I did not ask about other children just a percentage of scores and got the answer. The reason I have posted it on here is that people have asked smile

christinarossetti Tue 16-Jul-13 10:18:25

Really? A group of strangers on the internet asked you what 'levels' your child's year group were awarded?

Wow. The heat and end of term are clearly stepping up the pace in the MN's Champions League of Reading Levels.

simpson Tue 16-Jul-13 10:21:45

I don't know where you are getting reading levels from confused

People have been asking how EYFS is assessed and I said how many kids got it in my DC school and in the reception class that I volunteer in amongst other things and other posters have said similar.

Don't really see what the problem is really, but hey ho....

lucysnowe Tue 16-Jul-13 11:00:07

Just chiming in with our experiences too, to get a better general picture maybe, FWIW. DD got expected for everything (yay!). She is on ORT 2 red level (moved up Spring half term), obviously does a bit of writing at school but none at home (and very BIG letters with no full stops etc). Moreover, there were about 24% of her class that only got emerging with writing, so must have been deemed not as developed as her. So there you go. This is a very nice gentle village school, and I think they deliberately take it very easy in FS.

christinarossetti Tue 16-Jul-13 11:39:14

Yes, I wonder where I am getting reading level from... hmm

SockPinchingMonster Tue 16-Jul-13 13:30:23

Simpson - I don't think there's anything wrong with you being proud of how well your dd is doing in school. I can understand why you would want to know generally about the way other children have been graded - as this is a new system and from this thread it's clear that even teachers don't really understand how it should be graded as there are massive inconsistencies. I Don't think there is any need for anyone to be having a go at you or picking on your posts. Your dd sounds amazing by the way :-)

simpson Tue 16-Jul-13 14:40:24

Me too christina as my question to the school was nothing to do with reading levels hmm as I have already stated, don't really know what the issue is really [confused ]

Sock - thanks smile I am very proud of DD more so for being bang on where she should be in PE than anything else as she finds it very hard and has weekly OT/Physio etc...

My query re how kids have been assessed comes mainly from the school using the incorrect (old) EYFS all year apart from in the final 2 weeks of term...

christinarossetti Tue 16-Jul-13 14:54:16

The issue is as I first stated it - why on earth do you need to ask and then post about the 'levels' awarded (by which I meant 'emerging' etc, it was you who interpreted it to mean reading levels) to the other children in your child's year.

In your shoes tbh, I would be extremely sceptical about any assessment done on the hoof in the last week of term when the school for whatever reason has been using the old framework. And seriously wonder what on earth the SLT is playing at.

simpson Tue 16-Jul-13 14:59:50

No it was you who interpreted it as reading levels, I never asked about reading levels or reading assessments in the slightest nor would I want to.

Posting it on an anonymous forum is hardly broadcasting it hmm and I don't have a clue who has emerging or expected in my DD's class confused for any of the subjects in her class.

Yes I agree I am sceptical of the assessments done which is why I asked the question in the first place..

<<bangs head on desk>>

simpson Tue 16-Jul-13 15:00:45

Oops, too many "in her classes" blush

christinarossetti Tue 16-Jul-13 15:35:04

This was the first mention of reading levels made by your good self...

"Actually it is not DD's reading levels I am concerned with but how they assessed her writing..."

I was completely sure what I meant by 'levels' (which is why I wrote it like that and didn't say 'reading levels' btw).

simpson Tue 16-Jul-13 15:50:40

"Then it's difficult to understand why you needed to ask about reading results"

This is why I think you are talking about reading levels/assessments.

I will say for the 100th time I *never asked about reading levels/assessments when I spoke to the teacher.

christinarossetti Tue 16-Jul-13 16:05:12

Were you referring to something else when you said this then?

"Pozzled - my DD's class has 90 kids and she got the only exceeding, I volunteer in another school (reception) and they have 120 kids and 6 got exceeding."

simpson Tue 16-Jul-13 16:10:37

In all subjects/areas, not reading specifically, notice the lack of the word "reading" in the sentence hmm

christinarossetti Tue 16-Jul-13 16:43:54

Eh? You went on to say that she's not 'exceeding' in writing.

simpson Tue 16-Jul-13 16:54:12

Ok <<deep breath>>

DD's teacher knows I work/volunteer in another school in reception....

We were having a general chat about how schools seem to vary on assessment (not talking about my DD at all) and I said that the school I am in had 6/120 exceedings and she said they had 1/90 exceedings. Now since I know DD got one I can only assume it was her but at no point did the teacher actually come out and say that nor did either of us mention what they were actually for.


What has whether she did/not got exceeding in writing got anything to do with it? <<baffled>>

christinarossetti Tue 16-Jul-13 17:21:49

It's these sorts of comments - "There are 4 kids in reception who are reading stage 8/9 books and none of them got exceeding which astounds me tbh..." that make it quite difficult to believe that you 'don't give a stuff' how other children are doing.

Sounds as though lots of children on MN did get a range of 'exceedings' though (my close friend's son did in nearly all areas) and it will be interesting to see the full data when it's published.

simpson Tue 16-Jul-13 17:27:40

I only know this because DD does guided reading with them every week at stage 8/9 (and does not shut up about it). Admittedly they could be like my DD and be higher than that, obviously I don't know...

Admittedly the teacher might not have told me the truth when she said 1/90 kids.

I think you are taking everything out of context really hmm other people on this very thread have stated their child is reading stage 4/5 whatever and got exceeding. What I want to know is how the reception classes are assessed and why it does not seem to be universal in all schools.

This goes for all assessments not just reading.

simpson Tue 16-Jul-13 17:28:27

And you did not answer my question about what my DD's writing has to do with anything....

tiredbutnotweary Tue 16-Jul-13 18:59:00

I am concerned (I think just like Simpson and others) about how other children are being assessed. How can you check this without asking what other DC are achieving and the level they were then awarded?

It is rather like discovering that some people pass their driving test by doing a 5 point turn, some a 7 point turn whilst others a 2 point turn (i.e. something almost unreasonably challenging for a new driver?). Without asking the question - how many points did you do your turn in and did you 'pass' how can you make comparisons. Now this may not be the best analogy in the world but it's hot and I've so not had enough sleep, so it's the best I can do right now grin

You might argue that assessments at 5 are not important and I'd say you may well be right, but I'm a pedant and like to think that children, if they are going to be assessed at this age (and there are sound arguments for some form of assessment if only for knowing which are the appropriate next steps for a child) they should be assessed in the same way. One child's expected should not be another child's exceeding.

In any case what's the problem with having an interest in how your child compares - some people aren't interested, others are - it's not as if this thread is full of stealth boasts - I asked people if they were happy to share what their children were achieving if they had received exceeding and people kindly responded. Through this process (anecdotally at least), it seems there is disparity between assessments. I don't imagine this would show in the national stats unless you could get a breakdown by school and local authority.

I'd like to know what the other children in my child's class scored, if only to have an idea how mixed ability his class is. If the scores vary between 40 and 50, that's quite different from a range of 20-50. I don't care how any particular other child did, just vaguely what the average and range were.

Objectively I don't want DS to be the cleverest in his class, but going by his score he might well be.

intheshed Tue 16-Jul-13 19:40:05

I am surprised that the school you are volunteering in gave you that kind of information Simpson, I would not like to think my DD's school is sharing her results with all and sundry. I am also surprised your DD is so aware of other children's reading levels...

simpson Tue 16-Jul-13 19:47:36

I do not know who got what just the amount given. I am not all and sundry, have been in there 2 days a week since September.

Most children know who is on what level in my experience but they don't really give a damn by yr3. It's like knowing whose on the top table and who is on the bottom...the teacher can dress it up any way they want but most kids know.

Periwinkle007 Tue 16-Jul-13 19:55:04

most kids know who is reading well, especially if they are friends with them and sit in the same literacy or guided reading group.

I also don't see what is wrong with wanting some sort of baseline - doesn't matter WHICH children but just some sort of idea. it is a new system, it is different to before, it is seemingly harder so for many people it would be nice to have some idea of how it is working out in practice and whether our children are actually doing ok, are they doing well, are they doing well but not being marked as such etc.

simpson Tue 16-Jul-13 20:01:38

A lot of the kids in yr3 (admittedly I am taking the word of a 7 yr old) seem to know their NC levels as their parents tell them...

johnworf Tue 16-Jul-13 20:01:59

My DD#2 got expected in everything apart from reading and maths, which she got emergent.

I am really unconcerned. She's 5 FGS. She's not about to sit her A Levels. Why get so hung up on it?

MephistophelesSister Tue 16-Jul-13 20:08:57

[huge sigh] Well, I began reading this thread yesterday, and was starting to fret - we had only 6 school days left and no sign of my DD's report.

Today it turned up in her book bag, and now I am confused .

She hasn't been given any 'marks' at all. Not a hint of an 'emerging' 'expected' or 'exceeding' to be seen. Just lots of (admittedly lovely) waffle and vague comments under each of the areas covered.

I guess all schools interpret the report requirements differently ?? confused

intheshed Tue 16-Jul-13 20:28:59

"it would be nice to know if our children are actually doing ok..." Well presumably if they are 'expected' then they are doing ok! I really don't see what good knowing the levels of other children would do. If you have concerns, speak to the teacher.

As a TA (KS2) I can say that in my experience the levels will vary massively from class to class. I have previously been in a Y3 class where levels ranged from 1A to 4B. In my current class, the kids are mainly quite evenly matched. So finding out how they compare to others in the class really doesn't mean anything. A child who would be top of the class one year could be middle to bottom if they had been in a different year.

Periwinkle007 Tue 16-Jul-13 20:31:29

we have no levels either MephistophelesSister. I was completely thrown. the waffle in ours though is obviously taken from the EYFS requirements from the way it is worded.

I think the requirements are that they report to the parents, ideally in a personalised format of the achievements and that they make the actual levels available if someone wants to see their child's. So some schools are doing that, some are sending home a tick sheet with comments as well, some seem to be doing just a tick sheet with very little other info.

tiredbutnotweary Tue 16-Jul-13 20:55:43

Intheshed - I don't think it is about in-class comparisons (though I see nothing wrong with knowing what the class average point score is) it is about school A v school B or LA C v LA D and whether their assessments are similar - an exceeding given for a 1a v a 1b fine, but 1b v 2c seems a significant disparity ... perhaps I'm a lone voice in that, but I thought not confused

MephistophelesSister Tue 16-Jul-13 21:00:35

Periwinkle - that makes a lot of sense. The waffle does sound v. formulaic, so coming straight from EYFS seems highly likely.

I suppose that leaves me with two options if I want to find her actusl levels
1) Interrogate her teacher.
2) Trawl online and pinpoint the level appropriate to the wording that has been used in relatipn to EYFS.

I can't see that option 1) will win me any friends, and may well have me marked down as a tiger-mum. Option 2) sounds too much like hard work (plus atad obsessive), and I am far too lazy.

Given that DD is bright, attentive (and most importantly) happy, I really can't be bothered. Add to this the conflicting interpretations of the levels anyway... But those poor teachers - hours of work writing reports, which at the end of the day are fairly useless to parents sad confused .

Periwinkle007 Tue 16-Jul-13 21:01:27

exactly tiredbutnotweary. I think it is the inconsistencies, or implied inconsistencies, between schools even when they are all supposed to have been moderated.

How can some schools award exceeding for something when another isn't? the dreaded reading levels are the more obvious example for comparisons which I think is why they are referred to by people. If a child reading (and understanding) chapter books and above book band 9/10/11 is just expected in some schools but another who is on book band 4 in a different school is exceeding then something isn't being moderated properly is it?

and ok so it doesn't map their future and it won't matter but we all still want to feel our children's abilities are recognised and recorded don't we? perhaps it is just me and I am strange but my disappointment in the system wasn't disappointment in my child but disappointment FOR her. ok so she has no idea, I just told her the teachers said she was delightful and beautifully behaved and tried hard and we were very proud of her but I did feel a bit miffed on her behalf. silly probably but I did.

christinarossetti Tue 16-Jul-13 21:03:05

But you're not going to know whether the assessments are similar, unless you ask your child's teacher to talk you through in detail the nature of each assessment they have done with each child throughout the year and explain exactly why they awarded a particular mark and not another.

That's what moderation is for.

Periwinkle007 Tue 16-Jul-13 21:05:44

I know - the effort that must have gone in to combining the right bits of info for each child and then changing names etc and for me to look at it and think 'well that was a waste of a bit of paper'. The language used just reads like an official document rather than a teacher's observations.

I would have preferred a sheet of what the expected levels involve and a tick or cross next to it and then just 2 or 3 sentences saying something about her.

I have identified 2 sentences in the whole thing that I think really are her and really are her teacher and they are very nice. just wish I hadn't had to read waffle about weighing and estimating etc to find them. I almost felt they ought to have been highlighted.

simpson Tue 16-Jul-13 21:06:24

The other thing is to wait until all the results have been printed Nationally and compare LEAs and schools (the teachers to do this I mean) but by then the assessments have already been done and given to the parents of this years reception children.

intheshed Tue 16-Jul-13 21:08:41

I guess what I was trying to say is as long as you feel that YOUR child is doing well and is supported in their learning, what does it matter how a different school or LEA awarded their exceeding/expected levels? At the end of the day, the only people who know or who are ever going to care about DD's report are me, DH and her teacher. And once she starts Y1 all the EYFS levels will be out of the window anyway.

I could understand if it was GCSEs, but at this level it really doesn't matter.

MephistophelesSister Tue 16-Jul-13 21:14:22

Two 'real' sentences sounds about what we have too.

Definitely would have found Periwinkles's tick-sheet far more useful.

On the plus side, the headmaster has added a line about how delightful she is and how she always has a smile. [Just so long as they remember to teach her to read and write, I'm happygrin ]

Periwinkle007 Tue 16-Jul-13 21:15:58

ah thats nice to have the head's bit too.

simpson Tue 16-Jul-13 21:17:52

Do you not have a HT bit then peri??

Jenny70 Tue 16-Jul-13 21:18:06

It doesn't matter, I completely agree, but (and there always is a but!) we don't have consistency between our classes in the one school, let alone between schools! Children on the same reading level in one class all were given Exceeding, children in our class given expected.

Someone (who read the accompanying note!) said exceeding meant they were working at 7yr old level (ie. above year 1 standard), which my child's reading level is not. So yes, he should be given expected. But can't say I leap with joy that children in the other class on the same reading level are getting Exceeding, possibly having all glowing Exceeding reports.

But hey, I sleep well and haven't complained (or even chatted IRL about it). But you'd think there'd be some guideline they follow (or even proof read each others reports!).

Periwinkle007 Tue 16-Jul-13 21:22:26

I do yes Simpson - it makes a comment about a good start to learning.
don't envy heads sitting writing on over 400 reports...

simpson Tue 16-Jul-13 21:25:02

No I agree.

Last year DD's teacher had to do 70 reports for nursery!! Although nursery don't have HT comments on them.

mrz Tue 16-Jul-13 21:25:39

Assessment in EYFS is by continuous observation of the child throughout the year not by a series of assessments. The teacher makes judgements based on what she/he sees ... I'm afraid it has always been very subjective and one teachers exceeding may be another's emerging In the pilot studies most children fell into the emerging category (similar to achieving 6 points on the old profile) ...

Periwinkle007 Tue 16-Jul-13 21:27:51

it will be interesting to see if the pilot study results are reflected by this year's results. Will they be published in the autumn or not until sometime next year Mrz. Do you know?

mrz Tue 16-Jul-13 21:29:42

Normally around November

Periwinkle007 Tue 16-Jul-13 21:34:00

thanks. my other daughter will be in reception by then so will have to see how identical her report is to this years....

mrz Tue 16-Jul-13 21:39:31

We could have something different by then ... formal test for five year olds anyone

simpson Tue 16-Jul-13 21:40:46

I got DD's book home last week with all her assessments in and how she has been assessed (as you say mrz it's all continuous - sticky labels, pieces of work, what she said in show and tell etc)

It was quite sweet to read and I got more out of that than her school report.

tiredbutnotweary Tue 16-Jul-13 21:53:15

Interesting mrz because what I have seen happening in DD2s class is lots and lots of assessment. From writing the letters of the alphabet on proforma sheets to writing 1 to 20; from worksheets on sharing (e.g. 6 sweets between 2 dolls earlier in the year) to correct answers provided to teachers questions at carpet time following a topic. I don't think I've ever seen a teacher or TA just observing the children playing - the teacher and TAs were always working with some children on either assessing the children or doing the adult led activities - children playing were left to get on with playing unless an intervention was required (rare as they're a bunch of sweeties). But perhaps I misunderstood what you meant?

I'm not saying a play and observe approach doesn't happen but dd2s teacher even said to me that they have so much to teach and seem to spend all their time assessing (her word) confused

As for the EYFS profile I am sure there is a specific emphasis on the word accurate - it is used several times ... the report is supposed to be an accurate assessment of a DCs ability against the set of learning goals. Of course if the disparity carries on up through primary as suggested (and a school can have such differences between two classes) then it is little wonder that some teachers don't place much value on the previous years report.

Periwinkle007 Tue 16-Jul-13 22:00:51

by next summer? oh crumbs - didn't think they were changing it THAT soon. I am so relieved I changed my mind and didn't go into teaching after all

Periwinkle007 Tue 16-Jul-13 22:03:02

I am looking forward to seeing the learning journey I must admit, some paintings and drawings from wall displays came home today so I am sure it will be on its way soon

AbbyR1973 Tue 16-Jul-13 23:26:20

Peri... Do you not have free access to the learning journal. In our school they are in a box in the classroom and parents are free to look anytime they like, plus they are brought out for the termly parents evenings. I love having a quick flick through to see what DS has been up to. Some of the observations are hilarious!!

BabiesAreLikeBuses Tue 16-Jul-13 23:52:07

Periwinkle it sounds like you've been short changed... Got ds's report today and it's lovely, personal comments and examples of things he has said and done in every section. They seem to have a really good grasp of where he's at and suggested next steps are sensible. Dd is in the parallel reception class and levels v different although ability wise they are similar (but strong in diff areas) but i have an extrovert and an introvert and i doubt she'd readily show her ability in school at the moment.

Simpson - i also had to contribute to 70 reports this year thanks to the joys of setting. That's 30 hours of my life i'll never get back!

mrz Wed 17-Jul-13 06:21:26
CircassianLeyla Wed 17-Jul-13 07:10:37

Our report also contained personal observations all over it coupled with the official EYFS blurb. My favourite part if the reports going forward, for DS1 in y2 for example are the personal comments box. I am really happy with the reception report for DS2 without any levels, the language clearly explains whether he is or isn't meeting targets and suggests new ones for next year. At this stage I think this is enough and great.

christinarossetti Wed 17-Jul-13 07:30:25

I caught that last night mrz.

Beyond depressing. T'will sporn a market in getting your child prepped for school entry tests.

It's so scary that there's less than 2 years until the next general election and no credible alternative to this shower.

hels71 Wed 17-Jul-13 09:47:32

I wish our report had been more helpful. There were just two comments on it that were clearly about her. No next steps at all................But lots of tick boxes....................

Periwinkle007 Wed 17-Jul-13 10:26:05

nope I haven't seen the learning journey at all. I got shown something in her best book at Feb half term but otherwise not been shown any work and we aren't allowed in the school building (drop off at gate in the morning and pick up from door in the afternoon) so don't get to see the displays or anything.

our next steps included something she has been doing for ages and proof reading her writing which is fair enough but she is only 5 and she says she doesn't get enough time to plan out what she is going to write as well as write it AND check it.

I am still very very happy with her teacher, I couldn't be more pleased with how she has worked with her this year, I just don't feel the report reflects any of it and I think that is a shame but also don't believe it is the teacher's fault as it is all prescribed stuff and layout. the 2 sentences that I feel DO apply to my daughter are lovely, they just don't stand out and are hidden in government waffle education speak.

Spero Wed 17-Jul-13 10:57:10

Well there you go. The logical endpoint of the journey has been reached for those who say testing and banding 5 year olds is appropriate.

No doubt the coaching for the 3 year olds will now begin and whole new levels of stress and competitive parenting will open up.


mrz Wed 17-Jul-13 19:18:09

Spero read MN you will see coaching of 2 year olds isn't unusual

Spero Wed 17-Jul-13 19:22:51

Coaching to do what? A big poo on the potty? <boggle>.

There surely isn't that much the average 2 year old can do that requires 'coaching'. Not that anyone seems to have an 'average' child any more.

MaryRose Wed 17-Jul-13 19:29:17

Don't worry! I've just had parents evening and DS's teacher said the New structure had worried them all as it was challenging but doesn't really take account of background, level at entering reception etc unlike the old system. It is marked the same everywhere but if your DC got expected I'm sure that means they're doing great

mrz Wed 17-Jul-13 19:29:31

No parents don't potty train! but they do teach their two year olds to read and write and do quadratic equations

Spero Wed 17-Jul-13 20:13:07

Sigh. Big sigh.

simpson Wed 17-Jul-13 20:25:28

Not unusual in the MN world but everywhere else

Mrz - it must make your job harder when DC come to school and their parents say they can do X, Y or Z when in actual fact the child does not have a clue what they are doing.

mrz Wed 17-Jul-13 20:30:29

It doesn't make the job harder but it can make relationships with parents strained when you have to explain that their child isn't ready for GCSEs just yet (and yes I had one parent ask)

simpson Wed 17-Jul-13 20:39:53

At what age? (The child obviously)


mrz Wed 17-Jul-13 20:43:49

age six

Periwinkle007 Wed 17-Jul-13 20:52:07

oh dear. I mean I just KNOW my children are geniuses (or is it genii?) but I am not THAT deluded

simpson Wed 17-Jul-13 21:08:33


How did you handle that one??!?

I think I might have burst out laughing.

mrz Wed 17-Jul-13 21:13:05

I explained that she wasn't quite ready and perhaps when she had mastered subtraction within 20 ...

Periwinkle007 Wed 17-Jul-13 21:14:34


simpson Wed 17-Jul-13 21:17:24

PMSL grin I don't know how you kept a straight face!!

Emzun Wed 17-Jul-13 23:41:20

Urghh!! I have patiently read the above and still do not understand. I am guilty of being surprised that my DD's report, although great was not full of exceedings. (I along with many think that my child is the next einstein/messiah etc) I questioned the HT who told me that to reach exceeding levels of literacy was a massive achievement and I should be proud. I am, no doubt, but how do the teachers reach this. I thought that my DD's strongest subject was numeracy. Is there a key which is worked from or is it purely observation. I honestly just want to understand so I can help her and steer her correctly for year 1.

My son got a couple of "exceedings" in his report as well. I asked the teacher if it was measured beyond this i.e. NC levels, and she said no. It's two different sorts of curriculum and there is no way to directly compare EYFS and National Curriculum levels. His new year 1 teacher will test him in the Autumn. Although he's probably working at level 1 at least, and he's currently in an above average set. (I'd guessed that already)

Spero Thu 18-Jul-13 08:22:43

It's the A * grade inflation all over again isn't it? Now everyone has to get A * and anything less is seen as 'failure' so I bet you in a few years time we will see the introduction of A** and A* and EVERY six year old will be pushed into taking GCSEs, or whatever new nonsense they come up with.

Because if you see education as simply a means to an end in the Global Race, you create a pyramid structure with only room for a very few 'winners' at the apex and a big mass of seething, frustrated 'losers' below - to say nothing of the misery and despair of their parents who wonder why advanced facility with Milly Molly Mandy aged 4 has not translated into academic success that is rewarded with plum university place or top job...

Spero Thu 18-Jul-13 08:24:25

Sorry, meant to type A * or even A**********.

No one ever seems to learn the lessons from history about inflation, in any context.

mam29 Thu 18-Jul-13 09:48:24

Ahh mrs z how you keep straight face gcses at primary totally nuts thats a new one even amongst the pushy parents here.

Although has anyone noticed news coverage on gcse or even alevel results day where they always find some odd primary kids whos clever and sat gcse at age 6. I always wonder how they find thse kids along with ones who managed to sit 20 gcses when most schools only offer 9-10.

I personally hate the idea of tests for 5year olds.

Surly preschool education gives some kids a developmental advantage as both my girls done nursery and preschool.

My 2 year old son has done 2terms of preschool.
They trying to widen the rant funding so deprived 2year olds get free preschool /nursery from age 2 rather than term after 3rd birthday.

why cant they all just start school term after 5th birthday be simplest and do the test at same age as that means will stop such a gap between old ones and young onea as range of ability in avarage reception class must be huge.

In dd1s reception 2 kids could read before thet started school.
The majority could read at end of r but not all.

Many needed a lot of prep for phonics test which most teachers and parents disagreed with and the kids that failed got quite upset.

I was hoping now gone through all stress of pfb just finishing key stage 1 and starting stage 2 in september that i be more chilled out with the younger 2 but cant help thinking oh god its going to get much worse and already left one school to escape competative pushy environment.

Anyone know what american elementary schools do as thourght they graded all their their work a +, b c ct or maybe thats just high school.

extra testing wont make them clever just defines them and would worry the bottom group would disproportinally get more attention that other groups and the ones in middle probably struggle more as they focus on cleverest and brightest.

agree with inflation i think most people like to think their childs on track not behind or ahead in some things.

at 5 its too early
end year 1 was not great.
but what a diffrence a year makes end year 2.

why cant we delay all testing to juniors and leave the poor infants alone.

im not annoyed with parents for worrying, dont blame teachers its the system of continual assessments from r year 2 that does my head in and i dident realise what it was like until we were in the system as seems so diffenent to when i was a kid in wales, but wouldent move back wales as they gone testing mad this year.

I note that the 6yos who sit GCSEs rarely get even a B. Why not wait another year or two and get an A/A*? Surely it can't be because the child <gasp> hasn't advanced far enough?!

mam29 Thu 18-Jul-13 11:10:48

its mad i have no idea hwo tehy even o about it.

I guess only happens at home or private ed not to state primary kids

but every year theres a few on the news.

mam29 Thu 18-Jul-13 11:11:33

apologies for typo errors should teach better typing at primary maybe.

mam29 Thu 18-Jul-13 11:15:46

even gove agrees but there,s big difference primary kids doing gcse and say a year 8 or 9 where maybe doing couple early takes pressure off in year 10-11.

sheeplikessleep Thu 18-Jul-13 12:26:20

Good thread, although so much information and complexity (I have no understanding of previous 6 - 9 system as DS1 is just finishing reception).

As someone 'learning the ropes' DS1 got 13 expecteds and 4 exceedings (listening and attention, moving and handling, self care and the world). I guess 'expecteds' could be interpreted as 'he's doing OK, not brilliant, no problems, but pretty much average'. That's certainly how I interpreted the word 'expected' (probably I should have asked the teacher exactly what this means). There was no explanation of what these definitions mean or relate to within the report itself.

In light of the absence of any explanation, I was heartened to read a lot of '1s' for effort (rest were '2s). I took effort to be indicative of motivation and general happiness and willingness to try his best - a trait I think is important.

But then he is October born, so I also think at this young age, he should be meeting all of these criteria, given he has a few months 'benefit' ahead of the average in the class.

Whatever though, I see the progress he is making and praise him for everything he puts into it. He is so proud of what he's doing, long may that continue!

Agh, so confusing!

louisianablue2000 Thu 18-Jul-13 13:50:34

I must be a bit thick, I had no idea that 'working at the expected level' was anything more than a standard phrase. Personally I was more jealous about the lovely comment one of my friends got about her son being interested in nature (it was worded in a more personal way that I'm not going to quote because it will out me, or her!). Of course, we didn't talk about how the teacher thought they were performing because that way heartbreak lies. And considering how variable my own report cards were, despite me performing consistently, I'm not sure I'd put too much weight on it anyway.

bumpkin32 Thu 18-Jul-13 19:29:45

simpson just reading through this thread (having just received my DC's report which was all 'expected') and wondered how you knew the Head had marked down some of the gradings? I was surprised to get expected all the way through, particularly on listening and attention when she is the most attentive person in the class. I have had a few issues with the HT so wondered if this may have been altered in some way before being sent home.
Would be grateful to know.

simpson Thu 18-Jul-13 20:46:51

It was not the HT but the EYFS Head that marked them down. All I know is that DD was originally given 5 exceedings and marked down to having one. DD's teacher told me this.

I had a meeting with the HT a few days later and whilst we did not go through the whole report, what the HT said to me made sense, so I was happier afterwards iyswim.

mrz Sat 20-Jul-13 07:40:54
Iamnotminterested Sat 20-Jul-13 14:40:28

I'm intrigued as to how she explained it, Simpson, if you don't mind sharing?

simpson Sat 20-Jul-13 17:58:38

We only spoke about her writing really then went on to talk about DD in yr1.

She said that a child has to be a 2C (which her teacher did not know - which was why she was originally given exceeding).

DD's writing on a good day is a 2C but is not consistent and she only writes in 2 formats.

I think it's quite common for reception teachers to assess and then show work to the yr1 teacher to confirm but in DD's case it was shown to EYFS Head/HT and then down graded.

tiredbutnotweary Sat 20-Jul-13 18:45:34

Some actual evidence showing how one area is being guided to award emerging, expected and exceeding - with exceeding being awarded for reaching NC level 1c and 1b. This is almost a whole level of difference between those schools only awarding exceeding for reaching NC level 2c.

simpson Sat 20-Jul-13 19:12:53

Apparently there was a meeting with the LEA in Feb and schools in the borough were told exceeding is a 2C hmm

Periwinkle007 Mon 22-Jul-13 16:32:27

well our school seem to be using NC1 of some level as an exceeding. The document the staff are using is very similar to the one tiredbutnotweary linked to.

to be honest I would expect exceeding at reception to be achieving 1bish rather than 2c but that is just my expectations personally. I mean if you go into a classroom and see a reception class doing maths or something then some will be achieving what is required and some will be doing more than that. end of. shouldn't matter if they are achieving 2 years ahead of expected or not, just that they are achieving more than you would expect in reception.

I am also quite happy now I know my daughter's levels having spoken to the teacher. They have a sheet with guidance on it about what children have to be able to do and they have marked it off and then moderated etc. If a child is working at a higher level then they have a separate sheet with the NC levels on and mark off what they can do and this all then gets passed up to the Yr1 teacher for next year.

Redlocks30 Mon 22-Jul-13 17:47:32

The problem with starting school just after you turn five is that schools end up with either half classes till Christmas/Easter (popular with parents but not with heads as it isn't cost-effective) or you have three classes-starting September, christmas and Easter and have two floating teachers for weeks.

tiredbutnotweary Mon 22-Jul-13 18:04:26

Periwinkle - can I just check then, were your school happy to share NC levels? I was told I could have this information and have now been told the school doesn't have it hmm

mam29 Mon 22-Jul-13 18:07:43

I find t hard to belive an exceeding could equal a 2c.

would expect an exceeding to be 1b, 1b or 1a

based on end of year 1 in dd1s class thats what most got.
i would expect expected to be on middle /top end of efys scoring was 6 average upto 9.

would expect emerging be lower end of efys .

or as preschool do it in months 30-50months or 40 -60months.

wouldimagnine there be an exceptional child might get 2c but that be rare.

really the words mean nothing f no levels to benchmark it against.
so f they httng nc levls dont know why they just dont state those levels.

Periwinkle007 Mon 22-Jul-13 18:45:29

Tiredbutnotweary - they were very happy to show me the EYFS levels and how they achieved them when I asked if I could see them and then they briefly showed me the NC levels that she is working at as part of the 'this is all then passed up to Yr1' pack. I didn't get to look at it too closely and I actually can't remember them which is a bit rubbish isn't it. They were 1bs and 1as though for Reading/Writing/Maths I think. All seem quite logical given she is one of the oldest in the year and was doing well when she started school so I felt they were fair and accurate not OTT if that makes sense.

I think they have to show you the EYFS levels if you ask to see them but the NC levels don't have to be supplied as I understand it in reception and will only be used if they have exceedings as for expecteds they wouldn't mark them on a NC level.

simpson Tue 23-Jul-13 20:50:46

I have never asked for DD's NC levels but the school (teacher) has told me them.

I guess a lot of school won't assess on NC levels for reception, especially as its so hard to get exceeding now.

I was told old EYFS levels 1-6 now equal emerging (ie big difference)
7-9 expected (and up to NC 1A)
NC level 2C+ is exceeding.

mrz Tue 23-Jul-13 21:53:17

In the old EYFS profile 1-7 were the equivalent to emerging (ie hadn't reached all the ELGs)
8 was expected
9 was exceeding (a child displaying aspects of NC levels - varied according to actual curriculum area)

Periwinkle007 Tue 23-Jul-13 22:01:25

that makes sense Mrz with the scores my daughter got

simpson Tue 23-Jul-13 22:04:01

The bit that always threw me on the old EYFS was to be a 6 they had to cover 1-3 and 1 other I think...

Seems a bit pointless to me (maybe why it's gone!) a 6 should be 1-6.

Mrz - how are they assessing exceeding in your school?

simpson Tue 23-Jul-13 22:05:29

DD started the school year on 9s (ended nursery actually in all but numeracy which was an 8 - talking the academic stuff).

Still got expected though...(at the end of reception).

mrz Tue 23-Jul-13 22:10:36

Somehow it was believed that a score of 6 was the expected level

simpson Tue 23-Jul-13 22:19:47

DD goes to a school where there is very little parental input in their child's education ie no listening to their kids read, homework not done etc.

However most children made it to a 6/7 by the end of reception.

DD's learning journal came home with all her assessments/observations done on the old system right up to 2 weeks ago.

tiredbutnotweary Tue 23-Jul-13 22:21:24

Mrz, I thought expected was at least 6 points, made up of the first 3 ELGs and then at least 3 others, therefore emerging was points 1 - 5, expected points 6 to 8 and exceeding was point 9. A good level of development was achieved by a minimum of 72 points, either by all 12 goals at point 6 (so 6 points couldn't be emerging), although more normally some points may be less than a 6 and others higher as long as the 72 points were achieved??? Of course many children achieved more than the minimum GLD of 72 points, but I thought only those achieving less than 72 points were the equivalent of emerging?

And as you yourself have observed the level required to achieve expected for at least some (most?) of the current ELGs is point 9 (exceeding) of last years profile.

Which leads to the anomaly that many children who have achieved expected (let alone exceeding) through the EYFS playbased curriculum this year are already working within NC level 1 - in fact for numbers and shapes (the two maths ELGs) they are working beyond it and in L2 for at least some of the descriptors). Well at least until the new NC curriculum comes in and there are no more levels, or rather sublevels as I think there will still be end of year statutory expectations!?!

Please correct me if I've got any of it wrong - I'm still learning smile

mrz Tue 23-Jul-13 22:30:52

The expected level fir the end of reception was all ELGS (points 4-8 on the profile - which can't be achieved until points 1-3 are achieved) so a score of 8 tiredbutnotweary.
"Children were considered to have achieved a good level of development if they achieved a total of six or more points out of a possible total of nine points in the personal, social and emotional development (PSED) and communication, language and literacy (CLL) early learning goals and 78 points or more in total." with about 60% of children achieving this

tiredbutnotweary Wed 24-Jul-13 00:12:51

Are you saying that children with a score of 78 points (6 x 13 ELGs, not 12 as I thought earlier) were emerging and that only children with a point score of 104+ (8x13) were at the expected level then?

It is late - perhaps it will all make more sense in the morning!

mrz Wed 24-Jul-13 08:44:58

What I am saying is that when the profile was originally conceived the expectation was that most children should achieve 8 in PSED & CLLD (you could call these prime areas if you use current profile "jargon") a score of 9 was exceeding expectations and indicated a child working within National Curriculum levels (not the same as being secure at NC levels) and that a score of 78 became "a good level of development"

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