Assessment & Reporting

Assessment takes place regularly throughout each subject and Key Stage to ensure that all pupils make at least good progress.  At Key Stage 3, in Years 7 & 8, we follow a 'step' based approach, relative to the skills required to demonstrate success at GCSE.  Each subject area has an expectation of how much progress a given pupil will make throughout the year and tracks their progress towards this.  Starting points are determined by a baseline test which takes place in the Autumn term.  This is a skills led approach, relative to a pupil's individual starting point and is based on a combination of teacher professional judgement and pupil performance.  Pupils understand their progress is measured on the basis of what skills they can demonstrate and know what they need to do to achieve the next step. This information is shared with them by each subject area.

At Key Stages 4 and 5, we follow GCSE and AS/A2/BTEC grade criteria as a mechanism to report progress.  We gather many strands together to assess pupil progress including class and homework, verbal and written feedback, peer assessment, test performance etc. and our tracking ensures that pupils who begin to slip away from their target grades are identified quickly and supported through early intervention to get back on track.

Annual Parents’ Subject Consultation Evenings are further opportunities for parents/carers to discuss their child's progress with teaching staff. Parents can also access their child/children's performance information via the online system using their secure log-in and password at any time

All GCSEs now follow the 1-9 structure, with Grade 1 being the lowest, and Grade 9 being the highest.  Grade 4 is considered a ‘standard’ pass grade, with Grade 5 being a ‘strong’ pass; currently, the ‘strong’ pass measure is primarily designed for the purpose of school’s accountability.  The Department for Education does not expect employers, colleges or universities to raise the bar to a grade 5 if a grade 4 would meet their requirements. However, some universities (particularly Russell Group universities) have changed their entry requirements to grade 5 in GCSE English and Maths.  As a school, we are looking to Grade 5 as being the minimum standard required to study a subject at A level.

BTEC and CTEC courses are graded Distinction*, Distinction, Merit, Pass, L1 Pass (roughly equivalent to a grade 3 at GCSE) 

What grade should my son or daughter be achieving?

The minimum expected grade is complicated as it is based on the actual marks in the SATs rather than the levels.  The table below provides a guide to the minimum expectation and is based on Key Stage 2 SATs Levels.

KS2 Level (Yrs 10 & 11) 3 4c 4b 4a 5c 5b 5a 6
GCSE Grades 3 4 4 5 6 7 8 9



KS2 Score (Yrs 7-9)  Below 80-89 90-94 95-99 100-104 105-109 110-114 115-119 120
GCSE Grades 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9