New SIMS KS4 resources are a ‘must have’ for schools
At the recent SIMS Annual Conference I was talked to lots of Capita people about the exciting things happening in SIMS over the next few years. I’ll be blogging about the New SIMS Interventions module later but, for now, I want to blog about the new SIMS KS4 Resources.
The KS4 resources are a set of extra marksheets and reports that take the strain out of data analysis using SIMS. They provide an easy set of top-level analyses that are based directly on your current SIMS data – so there is no need to upload your data to another system, and there is no chance of data being out of date.
With school budgets being squeezed this year, it’s important that schools get the best value out their SIMS license costs and these resources might help some schools reduce their reliance on third-party analysis products.[et_bloom_inline optin_id=optin_1]
KS3 Without Levels
During one of the electives at the SIMS Conference, the consensus in the room that a majority of secondary schools have adopted GCSE 1-9 grades in KS3. This seems to be a pragmatic decision that I’m certainly seeing in many of the school I visit. If 1-9 grades become more popular at KS3, then you really need to investigate the new KS4 resources.
Improvements to the New KS4 Resources
I’ve blogged before about the KS4 resources here and here. They allow you to copy the data in you own school marksheets into a set of Capita aspects. Capita have provided a set of SIMS reports and Discover graphs to analyse this data and provide a set of whole-school attainment and progress figures. Using the KS4 Resources can save you days and weeks of development time and provides a level of analysis that was previously only available to users of third party products, or Excel super users.
Key Groups Report
The key groups report was part of the original KS4 resources but it remains an incredibly useful resource and give a snapshot view of all the vulnerable groups in school and their performance against each KPI. The really exciting new reports are these:
Progress and Attainment
This is the progress and attainment graph. It takes the key KPI measures of overall A8 and P8 for a year group and plots their average value term by term. In my example, I’ve only plotted two terms but you could plot all the data drops between the start of Y10 and the end of Y11 – and hence show the long-term relative trends in A8 and P8. If you are a school that plans to extend the 9-1 scheme down to Y7, you could plot the cohort’s progress from Y7 onwards. The graph also splits A8 and P8 into its component elements: Maths, English, Ebacc, Other.
This graph takes a wider range of KPIs and plots them for a given term. For example, 3 Levels Progress, 4 levels Progress, 5+ A*-C grades inc En and Ma etc. The list is comprehensive but both graphs are easy to generate once the assessment map has been run.
The resources are available to download from Capita My Account (SupportNet). Look for the assessment newsfeed for the the most recent versions. Although the resources are installed to your local Ampark sub-directory, a recent issue with SIMS updates means that the version downloaded to Ampark might not be the most recent. There’s also a useful video about the KS4 resources from Capita.