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Any junior school teachers? This doesn't sound right...

(18 Posts)
GetStuffezd Tue 25-Jun-13 19:20:44

The infant school in our village is Outstanding and was last inspected about four years ago. I've only been at the juniors since September and I've never taught below year 5 so would appreciate any insight...

From what the year three teacher says, there's always been an issue with the large numbers of level threes coming up each year, who now need to be level six by the end of year six. (Hollow laugh) I know this is common when there's an infant junior split - in my prev school there kids coming up on level three who didn't know what a plus sign was. It's not that bad here though.

However. Today the year three teachers visited the infants to discuss the incoming cohort. Every Single One of one of the classes is coming up to us with a level three in reading. All of them. And, strangely, it seems a handful of these have failed their phonic test. Now, I don't know much about the phonics test, so please correct me if I'm wrong, but how can they be level three readers but fail the phonics test? I know that there's no 3c at the end of key stage one, but this seems to put a massive ask now on us...

Any thoughts welcome!

runningonwillpower Tue 25-Jun-13 19:27:52

Make sure you assess all new entrants yourself as soon as possible. And record those assessments with evidence. Involve your head/head of year if necessary for corroboration.

If you can show that children are arriving regularly with inflated results then your task should be easier but your head may need to consider challenging the practices of the feeder schools.

noblegiraffe Tue 25-Jun-13 19:31:36

Yes, you need baseline assessments. I'm secondary, but kids were coming in on overinflated KS2 scores and Ofsted were then not happy with the progress they were making to KS4.

We made sure we did our own baseline assessments in Y7, documented carefully and Ofsted were then happy with the progress even though it wasn't quite what it should have been from KS2.

GetStuffezd Tue 25-Jun-13 20:06:36

That's interesting - thanks both. We do baseline and some of the results are quite shockingly low. Currently about half the class are only now back up to their original "3b" entry levels. Their teacher is bloody amazing, too. The most dedicated and hard working teacher I know.
Our Head said today that ofsted aren't always interested in baselines but we need to do them to give as evidence when the SIP comes in. They certainly weren't interested at my old school and as the infants there was outstanding, they weren't challenged in any way. I'm certain this is a massive actor in them being now in Special Measures.

Giraffe, that's interesting from a secondary perspective. Of my class of 25 I predict 22 of them will obtain level 5 in reading and 19 level 5 in Maths. Are they all more able? Are hey hell! I do feel for you secondary teachers!

partystress Tue 25-Jun-13 21:55:59

Yes, Ofsted inconsistent in whether they will accept baselined data. In my school they did (we had brought in LEA moderators early in the year to back up our judgement), but almost identical school down the road got short shrift when they tried. As with all things Ofsted hmm

littlebrownmouse Tue 25-Jun-13 22:16:41

They should be moderated by the LA or their representatives around about every 2-4 years. Part of the moderation process is to see how year 3 teachers have been involved in the assessments. It's good practice for Y3 and Y2 teachers to look at assessment data together. Could this be arranged? I would have thought a school where every year 2 child was getting a level 3 would generate an immediate moderation shock!

BrigitBigKnickers Fri 28-Jun-13 10:49:58

Our year 3s have always come up with shockingly high KS1 scores. We base line them but ofsted would not accept the assessments.

We have year 2s coming up assessed at 2c for writing who couldn'teven write their names... hmm

Fortunately they have been moderated within an inch of their lives this year as there is a new infant head who is horrified at the "cheating" going on. The year 2 and 3 teachers and both SMTs got together and scrutinised the levels so hopefully we should have more accurate levels this year.

I would dispute though that all level 3s would be expected to get level 6 at the end of KS2. Expected progress is 12 points over the juniors which equates to just over two levels. e.g. a 2a would be expected to get a 5c. Unless your 3s are genuine they would not be expected to get level 6!

The test might only give a straight level but there should be a teacher assessment for each child which should include fine grade leveling.

soapboxqueen Fri 28-Jun-13 15:41:18

I appreciate I've been on maternity leave for a year, but when did the points system change? Children are supposed to make 12 points progress in ks2 which is two levels. 2 points per sub-level. Therefore a child who gets a level 3b would need to get a 5b and a child who got a 2a would need to get a 4a.

A child would need to get a level 4 at key stage 1 to need a six at ks2

AuntFini Fri 28-Jun-13 15:44:42

In an outstanding school, soapbox, children are now expected to make more progress than just the 12 pts. Didn't realise until we had ofsted last week!

soapboxqueen Fri 28-Jun-13 15:55:46

Ah yes. I forgot that all schools are supposed to be above average. Silly baby brain.

JustPanicking Fri 28-Jun-13 16:10:07

12 points across key stage 2 gives satisfactory progress which is now requires improvement of course. shock The results you describe sound ridiculous op. Surely alarm bells must be ringing somewhere? On a separate note it is perfectly possible for level 3 readers to fail the phonics test as it only tests phonic skill which often becomes a redundant skill for many fluent readers.

GetStuffezd Fri 28-Jun-13 16:39:55

Exactly, aunt fini! 12 points progress is now not good enough. So to maintain our Outstanding, we have to get these 3s by and large to sixes. It's a complete joke. I really, really hope the infants get moderated or ofsteded soon.
Thanks for the phonics test comment, justpanicking that's interesting to know.

soapboxqueen Fri 28-Jun-13 17:03:41

Where does this leave high schools though? If level 5s are supposed to get A or A* Where are they supposed to be going with children getting higher and higher levels at ks2?

GetStuffezd Fri 28-Jun-13 17:06:38

Who knows? It's crazy. Also. As I said upthread, I do feel sorry for secondaries, as many of my children who will get level fives this year are most certainly not A* candidates. I hate projected grades.

2kidsintow Sun 30-Jun-13 22:18:38

We've had this problem for years. Our head tackled it by having us do our own rigorous baseline assessments.

Unfortunately, 2 years ago, our schools were amalgamated and the infant head got the job of head over the new school.

They still send over inflated results. Our y3 teachers are under immense scrutiny as to why they don't achieve anything in the first year. And they are no longer allowed to do any baseline assessments as the head doesn't feel it is necessary as he has faith in the results of the y2 assessments.
And if any children don't achieve as well in the class assessments we do routinely do, well that's because they aren't done in the same 'nurturing environment' as they have in the infants.

Just grrrrr......

GetStuffezd Mon 01-Jul-13 06:57:14

What a JOKE 2kids!
The infants attached to our old school subtly puts down the juniors' lack of "nurturing environment" to parents, it's awful behaviour on their part. When really, all their "nurturing" extends to is letting parents, even year 2 parents, stay for the first half hour of every day, and "inviting" certain children to have a 2 day holiday when ofsted are coming.

GetStuffezd Mon 01-Jul-13 06:57:37

And how awful for the year 3 teachers at yours!

poppy1973 Mon 01-Jul-13 07:10:39

Hi, in a few of the infant school they do get good/outstanding inspection results due to their high results. Which is why they keep doing it.

It happened in a school that I know of the infant head knew and told the teachers to do it, the head of the junior school knew, County knew - but wouldn't do anything about it (as it had been going on for years) and it looked too good for the infant school.

Do baseline assessments in Year 3 when they come in - so that you can argue the case. Apart from that nothing is done. It is an awful time for the junior schools as they have high results that come in from infant schools and have to try and achieve 2 levels by Year 6. So stressful !!

It isn't done so much in a joint primary as the head is responsible for all the results and level and wouldn't do this. The head that took over an infant and junior school and kept the results high - is a bit daft ??? doesn't the head realise that they are still responsible for the results in the junior school ? Odd. Unless they don't plan to be there in a few years and can't be bothered.

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