New GCSEs are being introduced by the government and will be sat for the first time in the summer of 2017. This is the same for all schools in the country. The new GCSEs will be graded on a scale from 1-9: grade 9 being the highest, grade 1 being the lowest.
In 2015 the government removed national curriculum ‘levels’ from primary and secondary schools. As well as this, new, tougher GCSEs have been introduced.
The new GCSEs are graded on a 1-9 scale that does not entirely match the old A*-G scale. As there is no longer a national system of levels, it is now down to schools to have their own assessment system. This booklet explains how we assess at The Radclyffe School.
At The Radclyffe School, all students are assessed using the GCSE 1-9 scale. In Year 7 and 8 we also have ‘breakthrough’ grades.
It is important that as a school, and as parents, we view your child’s progress as a journey. Small steps every term, whilst building knowledge and developing skills, is the key to GCSE success. Students are not expected to move up the scale quickly; the average grade at the end of Year 8 should be around a 2 or 3. Progress should be steady and secure over time.
For some of our younger students, being assessed on a 1-9 scale does create an element of challenge. The criteria sets a high standard, and a minority of students in Years 7 and 8 may not be working at a GCSE grade 1. To support these students, we have added ‘breakthrough’ grades to the scale. Therefore we can still accurately measure progress for each individual child.
The government now uses a system called ‘Progress 8’ to measure the performance of schools. We use this system to estimate your child’s final GCSE grade. We call this grade ‘expected’ and achievement above this we refer to as ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’.
Each student has a ‘pathway’ which is based on their performance at primary school; this pathway gives the students their ‘expected’ grade at the end of each year. This grade is the same for all subjects.
Pathways challenge each and every one of our students to reach their full potential. Some students will achieve beyond their pathway at every stage of their journey. For our students ‘the sky’s the limit’ – this is at the very core of our values.
During your child’s time at The Radclyffe School you will receive regular reports about their progress.
The reports show your child’s current grades and their Attitude to Learning. This will be colour coded to show where they are achieving their expected end of year grades.
As we get closer to the end of the year, where a student is on target, the reports will become increasingly colourful as the students meets or exceeds the expected standard in their subjects. As a school we place greater emphasis on students’ final grade, while ensuring they are on track throughout the year.
To find out more about Assessment and the New GCSEs, take a look at some of the most frequent questions we’re asked.