Category: Primary

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4 Ways to Set a Baseline in Assessment Without Levels

Why Summative Baselines Matter When I go into primary schools to create an assessment system one of the main discussion areas is usually progress: how to measure it and, crucially, what baseline to measure it from. With the old sub levels, the starting point for measuring progress during the current academic year was almost always the sub level the pupil achieved at the end of the previous year. But because the new curriculum is based on...

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Measuring progress in primary school. Do points mean prizes?

When I designed the new School Analytics system I was aware that measuring progress in primary schools was very important to many senior managers. Even in the brave new world of assessment without levels, teachers were telling me that they still needed a measure of progress for the termly (or half termly) summative assessments. So the new system assigns a value to each grade. When the system calculates progress it compares the baseline grade with the most...

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Assessment Without Levels Analysis in SIMS

In the spring Capita released their new programme of study marksheets as their ‘assessment without levels’ solution. In the summer release they included a new set of analysis and reporting routines. Schools who have already adopted the new marksheets, or who are considering their options over the summer term will want to explore these analysis routines closely. Here are some screenshots. Remember, if you are a primary school using SIMS programme of study marksheets, these...

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Extending SIMS Programme of Study Marksheets: Summative Assessment

Capita recently released a their new ‘programme of study marksheets‘. They allow teachers to record a grade against each and every statement in the entire national curriculum. They work well, but there’s no option to give an ‘overall’ summative assessment for a subject. Here’s a solution I worked out for a school that wanted a closer link between formative assessments and the overall strand and summative subject assessments. Why Summative Assessment Still Matters To explain,...

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SIMS and Chris Quigley Assessment

Several people have asked about SIMS and Chris Quigley assessment milestones. Well, here’s a system I developed for a school last week. As with most systems, the school wanted a few tweeks and changes to fit in with it’s existing system, but the flexibility of SIMS means that any changes are quick to make. Here’s a demo video to show you what it looks like: I’ve developed systems based on the popular Chris Quigley method...

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Formative Assessment using SIMS

Why everything I thought I knew about assessment was wrong. Perhaps without noticing, the last few months have seen a massive shift in the assessment paradigm that held sway in most schools until the introduction of the new curriculum in 2014. With the new curriculum came the removal of the previous levels-based system. It has been replaced with nothing and schools are free to develop their own systems. I now realise that I was addicted to...

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Beta Testing SIMS Marksheets for the new National Curriculum

In the spring 2015 release of SIMS schools will have access to Capita’s new marksheets designed to allow schools to record assessment against the new national curriculum 2014. It’s the biggest new development in SIMS for several years as it constitutes their first attempt at adapting SIMS for formative assessment. Tip: If you’re a non-teacher and not familiar with the new national curriculum 2014 here’s a link to the curriculum documentation – now’s a good time...

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SIMS in the MS Azure ‘Cloud’

When I visit schools I’m often frustrated that teachers and staff, fresh and keen to use the new assessment resources that we create, are held back by a lack of access to SIMS. It’s many years since the toughest technical obstacles to SIMS access were ironed out but many schools and local support units are still slow to remove the barriers for everyone who needs it. So I was interested when, At BETT 2015, Capita SIMS announced a new partnership with Microsoft to...

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The New SIMS Teacher App

Last week was BETT week – the annual education technology exhibition in London’s ExCeL. It gives education suppliers a global stage on which to launch their new products.  I visited on Thursday and Friday with a special interest in the new develops that Capita SIMS were showcasing. The New Teacher App for SIMS Capita’s main product launch at the show was their new SIMS Teacher App – an iPad app that links back to the...