Key Stage 2 assessments for 11 year olds
There has been much written in the media over recent weeks regarding the key stage two assessments that are to take place shortly.
These are commonly known as SATs and over the years become more stretching and challenging for eleven year olds. On this occasion children will be tested on a new curriculum that they have only been studying for one year and I think primary teachers, heads and parents are rightfully concerned about the outcome.
We are in the fortunate position to be able to choose our own assessment route. I believe that regular evaluation is essential for a school to be able to track the progress of individuals, year groups and the school as a whole. As such we assess thoroughly and regularly, using a range of different tools which feed in to our grading system that is then shared with parents. A formal examination week is one of these tools but it is far from the only measure. Practising the skill of sitting down and taking a test each year helps the girls to build up their understanding of the process without the pressure of being part of high status national assessments. We want them to do well but we certainly don’t want to create a feeling of anxiety.
Over the last few weeks I have made several observations about sport and exercise. Inclusiveness is an essential part of encouraging our girls to participate in future years but competitiveness also has a large part to play. Year 6 have shown their spirit this year with wins in several tight matches. Their fortitude has been rewarded by becoming champions in the under 11 Wessex Netball League and I am looking forward to presenting the shield when it arrives. They have also won the first three fixtures of the rounders’ season with impressive and improving performances.
The sport theme continued last weekend with the PSA May Fayre, based around the Rio Olympic Games. There was an opportunity to be part of the longest school salsa conga, to enjoy the bouncy castle, to savour the delicious BBQ and Pimms and participate in the Tug of War. Children and adults were able to watch and participate in playing the steel drums and lots of other activities. It was delightful to see so many of you there.