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Standardised tests(9 Posts)
Hi there, teachers. I am hoping you can help me make sense of something.
My son's school uses the Pira and Puma progress tests to monitor their progress and also determine prizes in subject areas. However, I notice that these tests are available for purchase online, including through Amazon and the dedicated Pira and Puma website.
My question; can it really be the case that parents can purchase these same tests? Doesn't that make a mockery of things? All a parent would need to do is purchase the tests and ensure their child is able to do it begore the child then goes on to do the same test formally at school.
If you use the Pira and Puma tests, how do you ensure the integrity of the tests given that parents can purchase them anyway.
We have used these tests in the past but not any more. All schools use different tests. Can I ask why you would want to use them at home though? Teachers need to assess children to inform their planning, see where gaps in learning are and possibly put the child forward for interventions. You won't be doing your child any favours at school by practising them at home as they will receive extra support where needed at school
I did not say I want to use them at home. I'm asking how there can be integrity in thd process if the tests are available for purchase and if prizes are awarded based on attainment in these tests.
Parents could purchase most standard tests. Past gcse papers are freely available online and most schools use them as mock exams. Personally I can't get too worried about it. Of parents /students are bothered enough to work at home then that's generally supportive and helps them learn.
Never heard of prizes being given for pira/puma tests- they are usually just another way for schools to keep an eye on how the children are doing. But yes, parents could help their child cheat if they wanted to (but pretty sure most young children would tell staff if they had done it before!).
Past gcse papers are freely available online and most schools use them as mock exams
The majority of schools use the most recent exam papers, which are locked for a year and are only accessible to exam centres.
Key Stage 2 papers are available online too, we have used 2017 and 2018 in Year 6 this year. It is highly likely one of our pupils has done the 2018 paper with his tutor at home as his results really stood out. Not great on the part of the tutor but we assess using class work too.
@mongertruffle I've seen gcse exams on twitter within hours of them being sat. In theory they are on "locked" websites but they are findable if students /parents so wished.
Our school uses PIRA and PUMA. But they don't award prizes, they just use it for benchmarking progress. DS consistently gets 115-119 each term on both. If he suddenly dropped to 100, I'd be concerned and so would his teachers. Even though 100 is the 'average' and target.
In terms of cheating, why would anyone bother? Assuming these prizes are not 5* holidays and simply token awards. I'd be more concerned that they are rewarding effort, not highest marks. They should be rewarding those who are showing improvement and consistency, not everyone can get 100, otherwise it wouldn't be an average.
Do you actually think parents are cheating to get their child a fancy pencil or book token?
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