STAT Sheffield Information (2015 - 16)
The areas of development for this school year are below:
- Using STAT with the Interim Frameworks is being reviewed - free support materials have been produced.
- STAT system development is focussed on producing a version of STAT that is focussed on Big Ideas and linked to Key Performance Indicators. This work is being informed by research and will develop the option for teachers to assess a smaller number of objectives in greater depth. This new version of STAT will operate within the same framework and provide a new option for using STAT alongside the existing approach.
- Both the planning/assessment grids and the statement descriptors will be reviewed in the light of feedback. As previously, any changes will be made in time to re-issue new versions during the summer term ready for the next school year.
- A SEND Assessment Project is reviewing assessment for children with SEND. This project is involving both special schools and mainstream SENCOs from across the country. It will provide planning and assessment materials which support the education of pupils with SEND and guidance for schools on the tracking and analysis of these outcomes.
- An EAL Pilot Project is being co-funded with Learn Sheffield to trial the use of new assessment materials designed for EAL pupils and newly arrived pupils. It will report back at the end of the year with recommendations and guidance.
- The STAT steering group continue to support the development of the STATonline tracker, to further develop it as both an input and an analysis tool, which can impact directly on teaching, learning and outcomes.
STAT Sheffield Information (2014 - 15)
The sale of the materials outside Sheffield was used to fund the work that the project did in the 2014/15 school year. It paid for project leaders and co-ordinators to continue to spend time away from their schools to work towards the next project objectives, which are listed below. It is also providing budgets to support this work.
- The assessment grids were refined and developed in the light of feedback to ensure they were fit for purpose. The biggest change was to the maths grids - which changed to be the same as those for reading, writing and SPaG.
- The statement descriptors were developed to break down each statement in the National Curriculum to support teachers in planning and assessment of the new curriculum. This work was carried out by Sheffield professionals with support and quality assurance from expert consultants.
- A report on commercial tests was commissioned to support schools who were exploring the options.
- A teacher markbook spreadsheet, which was developed by Nook Lane Junior School in Sheffield, was further developed and made available for schools to purchase and use.
- Training was provided to support schools in using the STAT Sheffield materials.
- The STAT Steering group procured a technical partner to develop a tracking system that would enable schools to record STAT electronically and track/report on their achievement.
Information and presentations from this year have included:
- Presentation to Sheffield Leaders (DHT & AHT) Conference - Friday 10th October 2014
- Presentation to Sheffield HT Conference - Friday 21st November 2014
The History of the Sheffield Assessment Project (2013-14)
The Sheffield Assessment Project began in July 2013 with the announcement from the government that levels would be removed and not replaced ('Primary assessment and accountability under the new national curriculum' - 17th July 2013). The group that had been working on a data sharing pilot, as a partnership between the Primary Leaders Partnership and the Local Authority, was reshaped to focus on the possibility of a Sheffield solution to the issues around assessment.
The first ideas were shared with Sheffield school leaders in a presentation at our annual conference in November 2013. Some of the initial ideas and language that were suggested can be found in the final materials, but there are also some significant changes! The work was well received and schools responded well to the message that they should wait to see what was produced before buying a different solution.
Over the following months, as the task and finish groups took shape, school leaders and practitioners came forward to participate in the project. Regular updates, for example the flyers for November 2013 and January 2014, kept Sheffield schools up to date with project. In the later part of the Spring term a series of update presentation events were held around the city (listed in this March 2014 flyer), to enable school leaders to decide if they wanted to use the project materials in their schools.
All of the materials that were available in preparation for September 2014, including both the assessment grids and the support materials, were produced through the project task and finish groups listed below. The 2013-14 Project Acknowledgements document lists all of the people who played a part in the process.
- Steering group - had the final responsibility for the project outcomes.
- Maths group - developed the maths grids.
- Reading group - developed the reading grids.
- Writing group - developed the writing and SPaG grids.
- Support Materials group - developed the training packages and the other support materials.
- Early Years group - considered the links between FS and KS1 and the relationship between the scale and 'Ages and Stages'.
- SEN group - considered the relationship between p-levels and the assessment scale.
- EAL group - considered the relationship between s-levels and the assessment scale.
- Pre-5 Scale group - decided on the scale points for FS, P-levels and S-levels.
- Secondary groups - considered the relationship between KS2 and KS3 and developed the 'Lower KS3' grids.
The project team also sought feedback from a variety of sources, also listed in the acknowledgements, in order to quality assure the materials. This feedback was fed back into the groups, in order to improve the materials, but also enabled the project to better understand the national landscape. This also led to the link to the NAHT, who has produced an excellent Assessment Commission report in February 2014. Three members of the project team worked with the NAHT to produce their Assessment Framework which was launched in July 2014. As the NAHT guidance discusses, the STAT Sheffield materials and the NAHT Assessment Framework are based on the same underlying principles.
During the summer term, training for Sheffield school leaders was rolled out in a series of training events across Sheffield and interest began to spread outside the city. Several colleagues from Rotherham attended the training in June 2014 and three sessions were held at Sunnyfields in Doncaster. Well over seven hundred school leaders, from a variety of different Local Authorities had received STAT Sheffield training by the end of the school year. Over the final weeks of the summer term and the start of the autumn term, they in turn used the training toolkit materials to train thousands of teachers. By September 2014 the website had over a thousand users and the materials were being used in more than five hundred schools.