In 2020, due to Covid-19, Primary Assessment, how we plan it, administer it and the knowledge we take from it about our pupils was turned ‘upside down’.
How colleges can adapt their approaches to assess quality of remote learning – a look at a successful strategy providing benefits now, that can be taken forwards into the next academic year
In this article, we explore the successful strategies employed at Leeds City College, part of the Luminate Education Group, to quality assure remote provision and inform future decisions about how the curriculum is delivered for maximum impact.
Leeds City College’s successful CAG process in 2020 resulted in just 24 appeals out of 29,000 qualifications, of which just 6 were upheld. In this article, Head of English and Maths, Jonny Diamond, and Director Quality of Education, Carol Layall, discuss how they achieved that, and consider the lessons learned to inform the 2021 TAG process.
The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in significant disruption to our education system - on the one hand, it has turbo-charged the development of remote learning solutions; but on the other hand, it has presented many new challenges and dramatically shaken up the way our children are taught.
Improving and then maintaining school improvement at any time is challenging; no one can deny that this is even more so during the current pandemic. Our own experiences as school leaders, and recent research (e.g. Education Endowment Fund), has evidenced the negative impact of the lockdown on the progress of all pupils, with our most vulnerable being in an even more disadvantaged position.
I feel quite sure the main issue at the forefront of the minds of all primary educators, after the difficult, enforced absence from the classroom for the majority of our pupils, is how we can now maximise and improve children’s performance across all aspects of English and mathematics.
Times might be challenging for school leaders right now, but it seems many are forging ahead with their commitment to continuous quality improvement, and giving their schools reason to celebrate at the beginning of the academic year.
Weedon (2018) describes the SENCo as ‘being at the confluence of an ever-increasing barrage of expectations and demands’. Shrinking SEN budgets, increasingly complex pupil needs, and a profession at near crisis point in terms of recruitment and retention, sets a bleak scene in which to support some of our most vulnerable learners. As a busy SENCo (often juggling other roles in school too) it can feel impossible to be ‘something to everyone’. So what is it that makes highly effective leadership of provision for pupils with SEN?
There is often the notion that challenging behaviour in class interferes with teaching and therefore it is the child or young person at fault. However in reality, the misbehaviour of some pupils is often a camouflage to hide a whole host of other challenges that the child or young person may be experiencing in class, like, for example speech and language difficulties that prevent communication or writing.
Let me paint a picture for you. You walk into the playground at Westoe Crown Primary School in South Tyneside and you're greeted with a wash of smiles from pupils and teachers alike. The head teacher, Mr Steve Price, knows the name of every single pupil (all 700 of them), and the love the children have for him is abundantly clear. Everyone was so happy and it was only 08:00 am.