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controlled assessments

(25 Posts)
frodoandsam Fri 22-Oct-10 15:47:45

Hi,
what are yoy supposed to do when the school are making the children cheat in their C/A?
Work that should be done under formal conditions is being sent home for homework.
Essays are being marked 3 and 4 times before they are sent in for marking.
work is learned by heart before going into controlled assessment.
Data collection ids done by the teacher and given to the children to write.

I don't see any way out. If I complain, nothing will happen. If I go higher e.g. the exam board, my daughter will suffer.
After talking to people and looking on fora, it seems to be the norm.

The children may get higher results but it is teaching them that If you can't bend the rules, you break them. cheating and lying is acceptable.
Perhaps I am old fashioned but I have principles.

Talker2010 Fri 22-Oct-10 19:22:37

I do not believe that it is the norm and I think your daughter would be better off in the long run if you did write to the board

LucindaCarlisle Fri 22-Oct-10 20:00:59

Write to the Director of Education in your county.

IHeartKingThistle Fri 22-Oct-10 21:38:29

What? That's appalling and is NOT the norm. My students won't be getting that sort of 'help' and I'm fuming that their genuine best efforts could be measured against plagiarised work.

If this is English you're talking about then this is a brand-new syllabus and the exam board need to know if schools are abusing it before it does become the norm, IMO.

Difficult for you because of your daughter, but she shouldn't suffer academically if the CAs are administered fairly, surely?

ravenAK Fri 22-Oct-10 21:43:29

It's not the norm. My students haven't been getting that sort of help.

No doubt next year's will be though, once we've had a dip in results this time round as a result of no longer re-drafting coursework repeatedly, & the Head's noticed & started with the knuckle rubs & chinese burns...sad

frodoandsam Fri 22-Oct-10 21:46:01

HI,
this is an article i found re CA's
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/education/6918805.stm
It is widespresd within the schools in my area.
Too much pressure is put on to the schools to 'perform'
Childrn have no choice but to follow the teachers lead.
P.S. My favorite is Nanny plum

frodoandsam Fri 22-Oct-10 21:48:55

If the teaching was of am acceptable standard she would have a very good chance of A*'s.

TheProfiteroleThief Fri 22-Oct-10 21:58:39

I do believe the security of controlled assessment varies on three levels. The lowest security can be set as homework. Might be worth getting clarity on conditions of each assessment. Jcq have complete guide.

BelligerentGhoul Fri 22-Oct-10 22:04:17

With the medium control assessments, they are allowed to take notes home to revise, have a go at the essay before the actual controlled assessment, make bullet pointed notes to take into the controlled assessment with them. Parts of this will be set for homework.

But the assessment itself has to be done in controlled conditions and their notes checked - ie no continuous text / no annotated copies of the text.

IHeartKingThistle Fri 22-Oct-10 22:07:05

God how naive am I? I've been teaching 10 years and become heartily sick of teachers messing with coursework to get the grades up; I actually thought CAs were going to improve that.

I couldn't give a stuff about league tables but my conscience needs to be clear and I need to know that when I send a student off to do A Levels they can write a decent essay. On their own.

angry sad

Pluto Fri 22-Oct-10 22:10:29

If you are talking about high control CAs such as English then this is disgraceful and you really should report to the board because your daughter's results could be jeopardised otherwise. It's better to get it sorted now rather than exposed at the end of Y11 when she will have completed many more CAs.

It totally depresses me that my school can be working so hard to do things within the (very frustrating) rules and there could be centres blatantly cheating angry

Talker2010 Sat 23-Oct-10 13:39:07

The article from the BBC seems to relate to coursework not CA

Since CA ha only just begun there cannot be a "norm" of cheating

What subject is your daughter and her school cheating in?

BelligerentGhoul Sat 23-Oct-10 15:15:05

The BBC article is 3 years old and is about coursework. I do think that, in the past, cheating has happened in C/W - that's why they brought C/A in.

DinahRod Sat 23-Oct-10 15:28:05

Suspect that if things were allowed to take their natural course and the CA done in the spirit intended, then grades would eventually normalise and c/w will be a much less painful and time-consuming part of GCSEs.

However, such is the pressure to not just maintain but increase results, that students will be taught the essay, be given all the points needed to write it, have time at home to include internet/studyguide and will rewrite it until it gets the grade required.

Or is that just cynical?

ravenAK Sat 23-Oct-10 15:54:31

In theory, you have to set a new question if it's to be re-done.

In practice, the 'new' question will be a re-phrase of the one they didn't hit their target in - & they'll be doing it afterschool.

The prospect of which has somewhat incentivised my groups to get it right first time, but I'm under no illusions - so long as other schools in the LA are flagrantly cheating, our Head will expect us to match or exceed their results. By whatever means necessary.

BelligerentGhoul Sat 23-Oct-10 16:03:25

With the English spec we're using, the question is the same for the first re-sit and then completely different. And you can only sit it in June or November, not as much as you want to throughout the year.

IHeartKingThistle Sat 23-Oct-10 17:31:45

Don't the grades have to be sent in at set points or is that down to the school?

Minx179 Sat 23-Oct-10 17:32:46

My ds's school appear to be 'cheating' (again).

Course work, controlled assessments, exams. It doesn't seem to matter in some schools how the kids get the results so long as they get them.

Thing is how do I 'prove it'? Recently told by a teacher friend that it will be done in such a way that I won't be able to definately prove - for example son believes recent work has had extra punctuation added. The work reads well, in fact there is no evidence that he struggles with punctuation normally. But how do you prove that it has been tampered with?

Ds writes in class, but he has access to a laptop for CA's and exams!!

BelligerentGhoul Sat 23-Oct-10 18:04:04

If they use the computer for C/As, the spell check and grammar check have to be disabled.

Minx179 Sat 23-Oct-10 22:09:48

Beligerent - spell check and grammar probably is disabled.

He said he didn't put all the punctuation in.

The writing for his mocks is completely different than that which he does normally, granted that using a computer does alter the quality and quantity of his work. Yet some things don't quite sit right with me,for example he struggles with getting his ideas out in order and coherently yet the piece of work has Firstly, secondly, thirdly, fourthly with the argument running coherently. Yet it was only last weekend that his English tutor and myself were talking about strategies for him to get his ideas down on paper coherently and getting him to check his punctuation as areas to concentrate on before his exam; incidentally after this particular piece of CA had been done.

He said at first that the notes he used for the CA were a mixture of his and teachers, then that they were just his.

Apparently he 'doesn't need access to a laptop/computer' as 'his writing is no worse than lots of other children'. The school can't get a laptop into class for him for general usage, but they can manage to get one out for CA's, mocks and his exams.

Particle Fri 29-Oct-10 23:56:38

Just leave it. It's part of a massive problem, that will sort itself out in time. Teachers are aware and unhappy, as other contributors have indicated.

If you contact the exam board someone then you could be endangering the pension of some scapegoat.

Minx179 Sat 30-Oct-10 18:13:10

What does just leaving it achieve and who does it benefit?

A) Either the school manipulate his exams and he leaves with grades he couldn't have achieved on his own, which will create problems again in FE or employment

or

B) They cheat throughout his entire time at school; then he fails his exams because they don't cheat - his fault.

Nothing to do with the fact that there is evidence cheating occurred at KS1, KS2 and KS3. Leading to massively overinflated predictions at KS4. Teacher(s) cannot tell us where his difficulties lie because then they would have to admit that he can't achieve what they are predicting. Which means we are unable to adaquetly help/support the child.

I feel for his teachers, but as adults they can look after themselves, thats allegdedly what their rubbish unions are for.

charlie47 Sat 27-Nov-10 09:44:15

My child is a little upset over controlled assessment,has sat 3 hours of it and had her computer crash in all sessions,lost all work.This has happened to many others too. School says computer network cannot deal with the around 40 students using spell check then saving. Anyone else had issues like this?

MmeBlueberry Sat 27-Nov-10 16:48:40

My subject is Science and our system of controlled assessments is different. We do a practical, which you can coach the pupils through, putting words into their mouths, then have a written exam within a week.

When I first did these, I made the pupils do the practical in silence (exam conditions) and gave them no help. I went to the training after the first one, and the examiners told us to coach and advise the students as they worked, with the full knowledge of the questions on the paper.

My understanding of 'controlled assessments' for other subjects is that they are to avoid a student paying for an internet download. Other than that, the spirit of them is the same. They do their research and draughting at school, under the supervision of their teacher.

If a school is telling their pupils exactly what to write by allowing multiple redraughts, then that is exactly the situation they had before. It is not a new feature of controlled assessements.

"Assessment for Learning" ia king in schools and that includes helping students to improve their own work.

In my school, the main rule for courswork/CAs is to enforce the deadlines. They have to submit each section of their work by the required date. Before that date, they can seek advice on their work, but by the date, they submit their final piece which does not get sent back for improvement. Seeking advice usually means the teacher highlighting parts of the marking rubric, rather than telling the student what to include.

Minx179 Sat 27-Nov-10 21:48:16

It makes you wonder why children today even bother taking exams.

It must be so demoralising for teachers.

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