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Straight answers at parents evenings

(24 Posts)
Kiddiewinks2008 Tue 01-Mar-16 20:54:53

Just had parents eve for DS in yr 3 but teacher was evasive and wouldnt give me any straight answers.
DS is 'at expectation' for everything but on the lower end of expectation for literacy. In the bigger scheme of things- I dont know what this means in terms of how, if at all, concerned I should be and the teacher wouldnt answer my questions about this. It was bizarre.
Is 'at expectation' ok? Do I need to worry?
We read to him but he isnt keen to read to us at home- I think I need to push this a bit more. He gets very upset about spelling tests but is doing ok.
Aibu to be worried???

TheFallenMadonna Tue 01-Mar-16 20:56:14

Why would working at expected levels be a worry?

Kiddiewinks2008 Tue 01-Mar-16 20:57:51

Sorry, I wasnt clear- she said he was at expected levels but behind. Thats why I am worried!

WombatStewForTea Tue 01-Mar-16 20:58:15

No its exactly as it sounds - where he should be for his age. With levels being abolished many schools still don't have proper systems up and running which may be why the teacher was 'evasive'

Kiddiewinks2008 Tue 01-Mar-16 21:03:15

What levels are being abolished?

Kiddiewinks2008 Tue 01-Mar-16 21:04:52

It actually feels a bit like the teachers are speaking in code which might be why I came away feeling confused about whether hes doing ok or not!

TimeToMuskUp Tue 01-Mar-16 21:06:45

I'd be inclined to do stuff he does enjoy and not push him academically for a while. There are loads of things you can do which tie in reading with fun stuff; even things as simple as building something together means reading instructions, following them and working as a team. Amazon have some great books on how to make phonics and reading games fun and challenging; I'm a TA and use them often to find new tactics with reluctant readers.

MsJamieFraser Tue 01-Mar-16 21:07:45

hes fne, just needs more help for literacy, you have sometime to worry about when the teacher "needs to have a word" as your 6 year old child has a "toddler tantrum" because he was being kicked and the kids kicking him were telling him he was on Santa's naughty list... apparently I needed to have a word with him as he isn't a toddler any more....

ds didn't speak until he was 4.9 months then you couldn't shut him up however he was speech delayed and emotionally delayed due to being in hospital after a life threatening accident with serious surges for 2 years afterwards... as well as over 32 general operations! hmm teacher knows all this...

When I questioned her about all of this, she then went into a rant that ds is 9 months behind in all his work, even tho meetings and reports from Y1 say he is above average and was doing some Y5 Computing and some Y2 Math course work...

headteacher meeting was had, the following week and ds at 6 is needing a tutor after he has failed, along with all the class except one child, his SAT mock testing...

notgoingabroad Tue 01-Mar-16 21:10:26

She might not really know herself!

IthinkIamsinking Tue 01-Mar-16 21:13:02

My DD was in a similar position at that age. She is predicted A*A*A in her A levels..... try not to worry. Plenty of time for him. smile

cariadlet Tue 01-Mar-16 21:13:47

The national curriculum levels were abolished by the government when it introduced the new primary curriculum, leaving schools to create their own assessment and tracking systems.

To be honest, we're all still getting to grips with it, and there isn't much in the way of clear advice about what exactly an "expected level" should look like.
As we're only in our 2nd year of the new curriculum and children haven't covered everything in lower years that would have been expected (eg a child currently in Year 3 would have been taught the old curriculum in Year 1 and might not have covered everything that is now taught in Year 1) it's hard to know where a child achieving a certain amount midway through the year is likely to be at the end of the year and whether that will mean they will have reached the expected level at the end of the year.

I'm sure the teacher wasn't being deliberately evasive - it's just hard to be certain about anything at the moment.

Goingtobeawesome Tue 01-Mar-16 21:15:30

Is it expected for him personally as opposed to by age?

RubbleBubble00 Tue 01-Mar-16 21:15:42

Is it not just the same as he's average and lower end of average curve for literacy

gandalf456 Tue 01-Mar-16 21:26:52

I know what you mean, op. I find the same. I want someone to say what's the national average and where does mine sit in that? I'm not doing it to be competitive or over anxious. I just want to know so that I know what we have to work with at home.

EweAreHere Tue 01-Mar-16 21:36:06

She may not be able to explain the current year group expectations that schools have scrambled to put together. If that's a possibility, ask for a meeting with the Area Lead or KS2 lead, whichever is applicable in your school. you have a right to talk to someone who understands the current year group criteria and can explain it to you if your child's teacher can't articulate it.

SaucyJack Tue 01-Mar-16 21:41:35

I imagine it means your son is doing fine. Not top of the class, but certainly not one of the ones that the teacher needs to be worrying about.

This is the trouble with having parents evening for average kids who are meeting expectations. There isn't that much for the teacher to say in all honesty.

Of course, as the parent of the child in question, it's perfectly natural for you to overanalyse every little thing, but he sounds as though he's doing fine:

bigbuttons Tue 01-Mar-16 21:47:32

Schools have had to make up their own assessment systems since levels were abolished. Many are still feeling their way with this. My dc's school report last year was a series of meaningless tick boxes regarding expected levels. I asked for a meeting with the class teachers because I actually wanted some words I could put in context.
I'm a teacher btw and it's tricky.

Foxyloxy1plus1 Tue 01-Mar-16 22:35:18

The trouble is that levels were abolished in favour of new assessment systems, but these are interim and not fully developed. The buzzword now is 'age related expectations' which is why the teacher would have said at expected levels.

It's all a bit of a mess at the moment. No change there then.

Kiddiewinks2008 Wed 02-Mar-16 07:49:04

Teacher did say that DS has a good attitude to learning, is a delight in the classroom, is keen to learn and contribute and a lovely little boy. All those things seem more important somehow at the moment than being 'at expectation'. Its confusing though!

babybythesea Wed 02-Mar-16 08:01:29

One of the reasons for the confusion is that certainly for the Year 6 SATS (so could be the same for tests etc lower down but I can't be sure) is that the govt have said that until the first cohort of children sit the tests, they have no idea what the expected levels are. Which means if your child is at that stage in their education, there genuinely is no idea what they should be achieving (as the curriculum has also changed - so you can't just base it on previous years as they are doing different things, mostly harder). So teachers are scrabbling round in the dark trying to make sense of it.
The situation is a kind of 'here's the information they should know - but we have absolutely no idea what the 'pass mark' is.'
Which is spectacularly inept of the govt.

HPsauciness Wed 02-Mar-16 08:31:16

I feel your pain, the first school my children went to used to show us a pie chart of our child's achievement, and it was hilarious, neither me or my husband could remotely understand what it meant- if it was full did it mean they were a whole person?

I listen for any problems, and then nod for the rest. It is hard to know though how they are achieving, and it does matter, say, if you have a child who is underachieving for their own ability (so 'meeting expectations' tells you really nothing about whether this is the case or actually a spectacular achievement on the part of the child).

Waffles80 Wed 02-Mar-16 08:54:20

Google ks2 age related expectations. To hit each of the criteria, students need to meet every single bullet point describing their skills. Previously grading criteria was a best fit - as in, child would be Level 4 (etc) if child hit most of the criteria.

Now levels have been scrapped, there is a new (tighter) criteria, and if they don't hit each and every bullet point for 'above' then they're marked as below.

Teacher probably isn't being evasive, but working with new criteria.

Waffles80 Wed 02-Mar-16 08:56:33

www.gov.uk/government/publications/2016-teacher-assessment-exemplification-ks2-english-writing

This might help.

mmgirish Wed 02-Mar-16 09:27:17

Did you ask her direct questions? If so, you should have been given concise answers. Maybe drop her an email or make another appointment to talk again and seek clarification.

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