This week I report on a replacement for Parent View, publication of research suggesting the removal of assessment levels in primary schools had led to some confusion between schools and publication of the 2018 primary performance tables.
Replacement for Parent View
Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector, Amanda Spielman has written to the Public Accounts Committee advising that Parents View (the dedicated website used by Ofsted to collect the views of individual parents and particularly used during inspection) would be replaced with a new service, which would better meet parents’ needs. The new system was being specifically designed to increase the volume, quality and diversity of views that Ofsted collects from parents both during and outside of inspection. This includes considering different platforms, ways of gathering and presenting data and the questions parents are asked.
Ofsted has conducted a series of focus groups with parents across the country to better understand how they would like to share their views, how they would like to see the views of others and what they would like to provide views on. After this initial exploration Ofsted will develop options for what this new service could look like. It will test these with parents and inspectors so that they can learn what does and doesn’t work, and once the best option is identified it will be tested and piloted before launching the final, live product.
Scrapping assessment levels has led to some confusion between schools
This week the National Foundation for Educational Research has published its research looking at whether the removal of national curriculum levels in primary schools in 2014 has had the intended effect in schools, such as allowing more time for in-depth teaching and increasing pupil engagement.
But teachers and leaders from 42 primary and secondary schools who were interviewed last year warned the “diversity” of approaches to testing that has replaced levels “makes it difficult to understand” the information they receive about pupils who move, or when moderating work in other schools. Because of this confusion, “schools would welcome a form of national standardisation for non-statutory assessment guided by annotated exemplars of pupils’ work” rather than the current item bank of questions available to schools now, the research suggested.
Publication of the 2018 primary performance tables
The 2018 primary performance tables have been published and show attainment has gone up for each subject nationally compared to 2017, with no changes to the headline figures published in the provisional data in September.