Assessment, Record of Achievement and the New GCSEs

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.

Legacy GCSEs and New GCSEs
Assessment in Year 7 and 8
Progress Pathways

Every school now has their own assessment system

In 2015 the government removed national curriculum ‘levels’ from primary and secondary schools. As well as this, new, tougher GCSEs have been introduced.

New GCSE Grading Comparision

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.

Assessment 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.

New GCSE Grading Scale

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.

  • It encourages all students to stretch themselves.
  • The B3-9 scale is linked to GCSE grades, therefore it is easy to understand.
  • It is simple for teachers, students and parents to monitor progress over time. As students are measured against the same criteria from Year 7 through to Year 11, we can clearly see the progress each individual is making in all subjects. Students who need stretching further, or who need more support, are easier to identify.
  • The same assessment language is used across The Radclyffe School, making it easier for students to understand what they need to do to move on, and for parents to be involved in their child’s progress.

Progress Pathways

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’.

Progress Pathways Diagram

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.

KS3 and KS4 Pathways


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.

New GCSE Record of Achievement

To find out more about Assessment and the New GCSEs, take a look at some of the most frequent questions we’re asked.