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Pupil Achievement and Progress

Posted in News on January 21st, 2015 by

Pupil Achievement and Progress in 2014

Due to changes in the Department for Education rules as to how school performance data was compiled, there was considerable discrepancy between what our students actually achieved and what was reported in the performance (or ‘league’) tables published in January 2015.

The actual achievement of our students was as follows …

  • 67% of Class 10 (Year 11) left school in 2014 with 5 or more A*- C GCSEs (or equivalent) including English and Maths
  • 75% of the class left with 5 or more GCSEs at grades A* – G
  • 67% achieved A*- C in both GCSE English Language and in GCSE English Literature
  • 71% achieved A*-C in GCSE English Language
  • 79% made expected progress or better in English Language
  • 79% of the cohort achieved A*-C in Maths
  • 100% made expected progress or better in Maths (including Functional Skills Maths)

The changes to the rules relating to how school performance data were compiled were …

Change to DfE rules about which qualifications carry GCSE equivalence and are recognised in school performance tables

The vocational BTEC (Countryside & Environment Level 2), which the majority of the class successfully completed in 2013 when they were in Class 9 (Year 10), no longer contributed to the “headline” 2014 school performance figure published in January 2015. Therefore, the published performance tables indicated that only 29% of the class achieved the national benchmark of 5 or more GCSE A*- C grades including Maths and English.

When the BTEC qualification was actually awarded to our students, it carried a nationally recognised equivalence of 2 GCSEs.

For our students, the BTEC qualification will always count as 2 GCSEs in any of their future applications to employers, colleges or universities. They have not been disadvantaged by the changes.

The only consequence of the change is the effect on the school’s position in the published ‘league tables’.

Earlier changes to collation of data for English Language and English Literature GCSEs.

To contribute to English ‘headline’ performance figures, a pupil must sit both GCSE English Language and English Literature.

If a pupil successfully completed GCSE English Language but not GCSE English Literature, the successful result cannot contribute to “headline” performance figures.

Basing Pupil Progress on a comparison of SAT results

The national measures of ‘pupil progress’ are based on comparing how pupils performed in the national Key Stage 2 SATs tests taken in Class 5 (Year 6) with how they subsequently performed five years later in their GCSEs. Historically, most of our pupils did not sit the Key Stage 2 SATs.

** Those children who successfully completed GCSE English Language but not GCSE English Literature cannot, under DfE rules, contribute to our “headline” performance figure.  Also, the national measures of ‘pupil progress’ are based on comparing how pupils performed in the national Key Stage 2 SAT tests taken in Class 5 (Year 6) with how they subsequently performed five years later in their GCSEs. Historically, most of our pupils did not sit the Key Stage 2 SATs, so our published pupil progress measure is based only on a small cohort of pupils and appears as 59% for English in the nationally published performance tables.

*** As explained above for English, our nationally published pupil progress figure for Maths is 84% as it not based on the full cohort of pupils. In addition, those children who took Maths Functional Skills are also no longer counted in the published performance tables.

The data we have used internally to assess pupil progress is based on the widely recognised and nationally standardised Cognitive Ability or ‘CAT’ tests taken by all pupils in Class 6.

Please note we have worked to ensure that the courses we currently offer at the academy all contribute towards our nationally published performance data so that some of the historic issues that impact upon our nationally published performance data should not re-occur in future.

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The Steiner Academy Hereford, Much Dewchurch, Herefordshire, HR2 8DL | Tel: 01981 540 221 | Email: info@SteinerAcademyHereford.eu

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