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Are we heading towards SATS madness too?

(26 Posts)
thankgoditshalfterm Sat 13-Feb-16 21:34:13

I was reading about the Y6 expectations. I'm in P7 (and I'm likely to have another P7 next year) and my kids would never, ever, ever achieve those levels. How on earth are we supposed to 'close the gap' with a test?

I never taught under 5-14 but remember my own teachers putting the answers on the board jumbled up and various other shenanigans.

From a professional view, I'm worried that these tests are coming in so quickly and we don't know what they are going to contain.

Is anyone part of the pilot?

Superjaggy Sun 14-Feb-16 14:47:52

I'm a P7 teacher too... Do you have a link to the Y6 information? My council is advising that the new national tests won't be ready for next session, and they don't seem to have any info on the pilot either.

Superjaggy Sun 14-Feb-16 14:53:00

I came into teaching just as national testing was coming to an end - I know there was a lot of teaching to the test, but there was also a clear link to league tables which was where the real issue lay, imo.

Testing is only useful if the results are used by the teacher to find out where there are gaps in knowledge so that next steps can be planned, they're not an end point. Hopefully this is how they will be framed?

AnthonyBlanche Sun 14-Feb-16 15:04:09

Perhaps the tests will be useful for the named person to know which families are failing their children? Anyone whose child is not achieving the required standard will be marked for further interference. I'm only half joking.

thankgoditshalfterm Sun 14-Feb-16 16:24:10

The sample materials are here.

www.gov.uk/government/collections/national-curriculum-assessments-2016-sample-materials#key-stage-2

I couldn't believe the time limits and some of the more difficult questions.

Anyone whose child is not achieving the required standard will be marked for further interference.

I want to know this too. If 10 kids on a good day in my class pass the 2nd level assessments in numeracy and literacy, what are the implications for me, my school and the other 20 children?!

Superjaggy Sun 14-Feb-16 16:30:02

Thanks, halfterm. The link takes me to KS2 assessments for England though, and the curriculum there is quite different.

I guess we can expect the Scottish assessments to be more in line with the old Level E national assessments - might be worth asking someone in your school if they've got any stashed away?

thankgoditshalfterm Sun 14-Feb-16 16:35:45

Oh sorry, I thought you wanted to see the English ones. They expect so much from their kids. Too much, but it makes me wonder how the SNP will spin the difference.

Here's a 5-14 Maths Level E
www.sqa.org.uk/mini/files/Maths_Level_E_Assessment_000A.pdf

Looking at that, it would be achievable for about half of my kids, but we'd have to really crack the whip I think. They are just not able to work through 30 pages independently atm.

thankgoditshalfterm Sun 14-Feb-16 16:39:59

www.sqa.org.uk/mini/files/English_Reading_Level_E_Assessment_000_Informative.pdf

Here's the reading assessment. They would struggle hugely with this.

Eigg Sun 14-Feb-16 16:42:50

I'll be seriously unhappy if they bring in Engkish style testing here.

My Engkisg family and friend's children are all stressed out their minds and under huge pressure. I can see no benefit.

Eigg Sun 14-Feb-16 16:43:54

Goodness me my typing of 'English' went awry!

Superjaggy Sun 14-Feb-16 17:53:55

http://scotgov.publishingthefuture.info/publication/national-improvement-framework-for-scottish-education-0

Thanks for posting those, I didn't realise they were available online. Quite a few of the geometry and data handling concepts have been taken out of CfE 2nd level, so the new assessment for p7 would reflect that.

I've tried to post a link to the National Improvement Framework document which was published recently. There's a fairly detailed "You Said, We Did" document too which was done after the consultations last year.

MintChocAddict Sun 14-Feb-16 22:29:03

Is the new testing similar to the standardised testing that some Scottish Councils already carry out? My DCs are currently tested in P3, P5, P7 and S2.

MintChocAddict Sun 14-Feb-16 22:35:57

Just clicked on the link for the English reading level E.

You would never guess we've got an SNP Government eh? hmm

'A taste of the Highlands' no less. How very tartan and shortbread wink

Maths test - If Torquil has 15 pieces of tablet and Murray has 9...

thankgoditshalfterm Sun 14-Feb-16 22:58:34

I'm no SNP supporter, but those tests are from well before 2007. The Maths is 2003.

MintChocAddict Sun 14-Feb-16 23:04:00

grin My suspicious mind working overtime!

thankgoditshalfterm Sun 14-Feb-16 23:06:08

Is the new testing similar to the standardised testing that some Scottish Councils already carry out?

We don't know a thing about them yet, which is worrying.

The BBC article said that "Information on the percentage of children achieving curriculum levels in literacy and numeracy will be published nationally and by school and local authority".

That essentially creates league tables sad There seems to be some sort of funding linked to it, as it is supposed to close the attainment gap.

MintChocAddict Sun 14-Feb-16 23:22:29

Thanks thankgod
Does that mean more funding will be made available to Councils where attainment is found to be lower? Or will funding be linked to increased attainment? More worrying if the latter.
I'm not a teacher so not really up to speed with educational developments but seems to me to be a quick knee jerk reaction to criticism SNP have faced re: falling standards of literacy/numeracy.
How do you best think the attainment gap can be closed? Possibly the sixty four thousand dollar question I know.

Superjaggy Sun 14-Feb-16 23:50:40

The document I linked to earlier says that pilots will be carried out this year and the new framework will go live in 2017. Suspect that systems already in place like INCAS (computer based testing which schools already use) will be updated / adapted.

I don't like the sound of league tables either, but the document says that parents will be told their child's level, it doesn't suggest that tables will ever be published. I guess the information will exist by school and LA though, so I guess it depends on whether the press seeks out the info in that format.

Euphemia Mon 15-Feb-16 12:22:25

Suspect that systems already in place like INCAS (computer based testing which schools already use) will be updated / adapted.

I think the company that does INCAS will be given the contract for the new tests. The government wants online tests as they think they can sell them to us as less time-consuming for schools to administer than paper-based systems that require marking.

We have 12 laptops for the whole school and dodgy wifi. Plenty schools have no wifi. hmm

thankgoditshalfterm Mon 15-Feb-16 12:33:57

I can't see the introduction of computerised tests. We currently have 2 full P1s, 3 middling P3s, and 2 full P7s.

We have 24 iPads and no wifi hmm

There are another 6 schools near us, not one has a computer suite.

How do you best think the attainment gap can be closed? Possibly the sixty four thousand dollar question I know.
Class sizes need to go down, more teachers and classroom assistants need to be hired, the ASN and SEBD units need to be reopened and we need time to bed in the curriculum without veering rapidly from one idea to the other.

Superjaggy Mon 15-Feb-16 15:54:55

I agree with what you say about needing more classroom assistants, ASN and SEBD provision. And fairly horrified that two of you have hardly any ICT in your schools! I'm in the north east and do moan about ICT, but it's not as bad as that confused

Superjaggy Mon 15-Feb-16 15:56:24

Perhaps the answer therefore is to reintroduce ring fencing of part of LA budgets for education. Should never have been done away with in the first place imo.

MintChocAddict Mon 15-Feb-16 19:50:00

What's the EIS take on these developments? Is industrial action a possibility?

Euphemia Mon 15-Feb-16 21:17:28

It's too soon to be talking industrial action - we don't know what we're dealing with yet.

EIS statement here.

MintChocAddict Mon 15-Feb-16 22:04:12

Thanks Euphemia I would have thought that the fact that you don't know what you're dealing with yet would be ringing alarm bells that this will be rushed in? Wasn't CfE and introduction of new Nationals the same? Given that 2017 isn't that far away it would be concerning to me.
As a parent of a child with ASN the fast pace of change in education certainly concerns me and this reeks of teachers being pulled in even more directions without enough time to prepare. Knee jerk policies instead of proper planning processes.
Will be watching developments with interest.

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