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Parents informed about Level 6 SATS

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

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

teacherwith2kids Sat 23-Mar-13 18:11:59


That was exactly what DS gained from doing Level 6 maths. He, his class and his teacher were all energised by having a challenge to work for and new curriculum material to cover. As they did their level 6 work in class time (it's a school which treats SATs very lightly, with just 2 'familiarisation papers' during trhe whole of Year 6, and where all maths is taught in mixed ability classes) it also brought on the whole group - the number of Level 5s was also very high and I think that the energy and interest and curiousity modelled by the 'top table' filtered down as a 'buzz' to everyone.

lisson Sat 23-Mar-13 18:22:17

Feenie - do you know where they are published for 2012? I thought they would be in the DofE performance tables pages (because they seem to have every conceivable statistic there) but they weren't.

0% for reading? Presumably that's 0.49% rather than no one passed??

Feenie Sat 23-Mar-13 18:23:14

Indeed, would be rounded. I found them last week, can't find them now - will keep looking.

lljkk Sat 23-Mar-13 18:32:04

Try TES website, it's linked to from some of the fora there.

I recognise what chickenkorma said in DD; she wants the challenge.

DrownedGirl Sun 24-Mar-13 08:04:27

Isn't the most likely explanation that the school doesn't think she is l6 material and was fibbing about the date to avoid having to tell you that? There is no way the school doesn't know the timetable for the tests.

lljkk Sun 24-Mar-13 09:09:10

(Assuming DG was talking to me): Teacher is insisting she is able enough, just that he was sure there was a date conflict (like last year). Would have been easy enough to ignore DD's tantrums if simply not that able.*

I once described how DC school offered mini-pizzas for morning snacks and had MNers shrieking that I was a troll, couldn't possibly be a state school in England that would offer such an unhealthy snack.

So I am used to being told by MNers "That can't possibly be right!" about DC school. grin

I read stuff on here that astounds me about how other schools are run, too.

Feenie Sun 24-Mar-13 09:57:20

What does a date conflict even mean? confused

Timetable here - page 8

mrz Sun 24-Mar-13 14:52:08

He's looking at last year's dates. The level 6 tests were the week after the 3-5 tests

Chocolatemoosemama Sun 24-Mar-13 16:19:08

Two thirds of y6 pupils at my ds's school are currently having extra lessons for level 6 sats. The lessons are being tutored by teachers from the local academy.

The decision on who should attend these lessons was taken after they all completed practice papers earlier in the year. Anyone who didn't make it into the group was discretely moved down a group. This resulted in some pupils, who had previously always been in the top set and were predicted a comfortable 5 to lose confidence and self-esteem. The effect is compounded by there being very few y6 pupils around on the mornings and break times that the level 6-ers are having extra tuition, which makes the ones who aren't being tutored feel like they stand out as less-than.

The thing that confuses me is the need for extra tutoring for those put in for level 6 SATs. Surely, if they are good enough to get a level 6 they should be put in for it and if they pass, fantastic, if not it shouldn't matter. However, why are the top performing students getting extra lessons and support to gain an even higher grade in their SATs when the lower performing ones continue to just have their normal lessons and no additional support.

It doesn't make sense to me, as my way of thinking is that those that are exceptional should have the opportunity to attempt the level 6, if appropriate for them. Those that will comfortably get decent SAT results should be put in for standard SAT papers and those who are the lowest performing should be the ones to get additional help and support, because they are the most in need of it. confused

In our family, ds1 was one of the children who was moved down a group and it did knock his confidence, especially as he had made a monumental effort in y5 and been told he had earned his place near the top of the set and should be proud of himself. He didn't perform as well as expected in their first test papers last Autumn, for various reasons and ended up feeling a failure as a result.

He's ok with it now, as I have told him all he has to do is do his best and that's that, whatever he achieves, as long as he does his best, is all anyone wants or expects. Ds2 is a couple of years away from year 6 and he is a strong mid-range student, so I wouldn't expect him to have or need any additional tutoring either and to be honest I feel he's better off for it.

I was surprised our school has gone this route with level 6 tutoring, because historically they have always had excellent SAT results without excessively pushing the year 6 pupils. (They only start revising at Easter and the rest of the year it's business as usual.)

I get the impression, contrary to what others have said on the thread about secondaries not liking pupils to come into y7 with level 6's, that in our case the pressure has come down from the local academy, which is very results-orientated and rapidly becoming highly selective, despite being state funded.

mankyscotslass Wed 27-Mar-13 13:55:08

DS, at lunch today has just told me he has been told this morning he will also be sitting the level 6 reading paper.

He is unimpressed as that means 2 full days of tests - one for reading, one for maths, as he is doing level 6 for both.

lljkk Wed 27-Mar-13 16:35:00

That sounds like way too public a selection procedure, Chocolate.

Maybe DD's "I don't even know what dates the L6 tests are on" teacher's style is way better.

100% (1000%) I agree with you on the "Why should so much extra tuition be required" point. I say the same thing about private schools that give out lots of homework. Small classes, selective well-behaved intake, what are parents paying for if pupils need to come home & do lots of work on top of the regular school day? confused

DD brought home some mock papers to look at over Easter, has a fuzzy idea who else not that I shamelessly probed is sitting L6. No extra lessons for her that I know about (yet?).

Doesn't feel like they've been drilled at all for SATs, though, anything but, loads of other things going on. I am very pleased about that.

lljkk Wed 27-Mar-13 16:46:00

total gossip now... but from DD said maybe 5 girls & 1 boy are sitting at least 1 L6 test. is that to be expected? Yr group is about 50:50 boy:girl.

I think I'd feel extra pleased if I had a boy who was up for it.

cumbrialass Wed 27-Mar-13 17:00:52

I have 13 year 6, of these 4 are doing level 6 in maths and 5 level 6 in english. One is a girl, the rest boys. Last year my brightest group were all girls, the year before all boys! It's just the luck of the draw!

lisson Wed 27-Mar-13 21:52:36

We, the parents, were told in the end (i.e. today). DS is doing L6 maths. He's pleased about it, looking forward to the challenge.

If only I'd felt like that when I was doing my finals!

Foundapound Thu 28-Mar-13 09:23:23

Just found this thread, very interesting. I was unaware of the existence of separate L6 tests, until our school started a maths club for the top 10 kids (there's 30ish in the year), with a teacher from local secondary coming to teach them once a week. Those kids seem to be loving it, and they're competitive in a supportive way - dd has been coming home chuffed with her marks, and amazed at the 2 lads who're doing the best, iyswim. They all seem quite excited at the prospect of doing L6s. dd is getting L5a in everything at the moment, but they've only mentioned L6 in maths.

There's no pressure on the kids as far as I can see as it doesn't matter at all what mark they get (unlike when dd did 11+, where as out of catchment child she needed to get the best mark she could to get into the only school in the area that teaches Latin which she is desperate to do!). All of the L6 maths kids did 11plus bar 2, so they have some experience of exams already.

MyChildDoesntNeedSleep Thu 28-Mar-13 11:29:28

I think the L6 paper is a good thing. It seems to be motivating the children rather than stressing them out.

TheBuskersDog Thu 28-Mar-13 22:25:29

I agree with previous posters that say extra tuition surely defeats the purpose. The SATs are supposed to test what level the school has got the children to, not what level can the children get to with extra, targeted lessons.

Regarding secondary school, it's not pressure so much as expectation. Based on KS2 results and analysis by the Fisher Family Trust the school will have predicted GCSE results. On my Year 11 son's progress reports it has his score at KS2 (he got 5as, they didn't do L6 then) and then a table showing what most children with that score achieve at GSCE i.e. what he 'should' be able to achieve.
This doesn't take into account the different skills required for some subjects, just because he did well in maths, english and science in year 6 theoretically he should be able to get A/A* in art, drama, P.E etc. Even in english just because you are good at reading comprehension doesn't necessarily mean you'll be good at writing essays analysing poetry or Shakespeare. Pressure is on the school to meet the targets.

MyChildDoesntNeedSleep Fri 29-Mar-13 18:34:43

I don't know, busker, I think it's a pretty good predictor. I was excellent at English and I know this was the reason I got a good grade in my drama GCSE....the coursework (essay writing) saved me. I'm definitely no thespian!

Good command of English will help with any course that requires essays to be written. You also can't underestimate the advantage that being told you are clever gives you. You assume you will (and/or want to) be top in every subject. OK, PE and art are different as they require actual talent, but everything else should be easy enough for a bright child with a good memory.

lljkk Fri 29-Mar-13 19:40:13

...with a good memory and the right work ethic AND not emotionally or other wise distracted. That's the problem with human beings, we aren't robots.

I was always told I was clever but assumed it was total BS.

I think the L6 thing is motivating for children who want to be motivated. Pointless for others, regardless of innate talent.

MyChildDoesntNeedSleep Fri 29-Mar-13 19:57:42

Absolutely, lljkk.

choccyp1g Fri 29-Mar-13 20:15:48

Mychilddoesn'tneedsleep "you can't underestimate the advantage that being told you are clever gives you"

But what about all the others, who are effectively being told they are "not clever"? A subject for a whole nother thread methinks.

lljkk Fri 29-Mar-13 20:18:35

Why couldn't they take it as "you need to work harder!" rather than a permanent statement of lack of ability.

I didn't give a damn what my grades were until I was 14. Then I turned into a high achiever because I wanted to be one. Not because of how clever anyone thought I was or wasn't. That never made any difference to my attitude.

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