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Keeping schools updated on the latest news and ideas. Read about our approach to assessment, what we are doing and why...


'What is Good Progress?' Webinar

This is a question we have been asked a lot over recent years. The removal of Levels and now also P Levels has left schools unsure on the progress pupils with SEND should make. Our webinar below is designed to help schools answer that question. It would be great if I could pull out a number or a formula that you could use to judge progress, but it is not that simple. Progress needs to be judged by those who work with the pupil. There are lots of questions that need to be asked and schools need to use their assessment data to make decisions and make changes within their school.

The webinar doesn’t give the answer to what is good progress but gives schools things to discuss, ideas to reflect on within their school. Our products can help support schools in making decisions and evidencing progress, but the teachers need to use this data to make their own decisions and be confident in these decisions. In the webinar I covered a range of advice from Ofsted, I also covered some of the Ofsted Myths and talked about some of the changes planned for the 2019 Ofsted Inspection Framework.

As part of the webinar there were a number of handouts, these can be found in the links below:

  • Primary Steps – Progress Guidance – This document is designed to support teachers working towards End of Year outcomes to judge progress. The document gives simplified progress values for pupils that teachers can use as guidance when judging progress, teachers will need to take into account previous progress, the pupil’s needs, how effective provision has been and have there been external factors to judge if progress is good enough.
  • Progression Steps – Progress Guidance – This document is designed for schools using our Progression Steps. The document contains a range of progress values for pupils working at different levels in different key stages. It gives 3 progress values for each level. These are not ‘below’, ‘at’ or ‘exceeded’ judgements, they are bands of progress, professionals will need to have conversations about progress taking into account previous progress, the pupil’s needs, how effective provision has been and have there been external factors to judge if progress is good enough. A pupil could be in the lower quartile, but still have made good enough progress.
  • Making Data Work - Workload Advisory Group Report– This report was released on the 5th of November and is designed to help leaders think about the workload and impact their assessment and data process has. It has a number of recommendations to reduce teacher workload by reducing unnecessary work - “Attainment information should only be compiled centrally as frequently as it is possible for others to act on it. Without actions, it is not possible for collation of student attainment information to play any part in the work of a school.”
  • Government Response to the Workload Advisory Group Report - This response shows that the government agrees with the recommendations of the Workload Advisory Group
  • Ofsted Inspection Framework 2019 – Ofsted has started talking about the changes that are coming in the 2019 Ofsted Inspection Framework. It appears to be really good news for pupils with SEND as it moves away from the heavy focus on outcomes to focussing on curriculum, pupil development and preparing pupils for their future.

The initial feedback from this webinar has helped us understand where schools are on the journey around the removal of P Levels. We can also find out about changes schools are implementing now they have more flexibility around the assessment process, how they judge progress and how they communicate with parents.

If you have any questions on this webinar, please contact me via email – dale@bsquared.co.uk


How to spend school budgets but save money (over £800/year!)

School budgets are being squeezed relentlessly. The National Education Union showed 94% of 1,800 school staff surveyed have spent their own money on classroom resources! How do senior leaders decide where to spend the budget? Where is the smart money being spent?

Instead of cutting back on everything, take a look at what you can do to become more efficient. For example, have you ever added up the cost of dealing with paper-based evidence of learning?

Based on 1 photo per week per pupil in a single form entry primary school, we estimate this costs £2074.55 per year! Including cost of glue sticks £63.84 + cost of printing £532.35 + cost of time £1478.36.

Invest in time saving technology. Go digital for your pupil observations and reduce the time and costs involved in printing, cutting and sticking.  It can save your school over £800/year*

Going digital also has several advantages over paper. Digital cloud-based evidence can’t get lost. Digital evidence can be used to show a student’s progress over time for example from Year R through to Year 6. It can be used to support teacher judgements and to moderate work. End of year reports can be created quickly and easily.

One digital solution, shortlisted for 2 Bett Awards in 2018, is Evisense from B Squared. Using the Evisense app on a mobile device, teachers can instantly capture evidence of a child’s achievements and upload it to their profile. If you don’t have time to document your observations immediately you can add comments later. The data can also be used to identify skill gaps. Evidence can be viewed by student, class, subject, attainment level or skill. All staff can have access to see each pupil’s achievements and they can even be shared securely with parents, enabling greater parental engagement. Evisense boasts 99.8% uptime and outstanding security measures, including audit trails for users, access restrictions and the use of child protection lists. 

Schools can sign up for a FREE 90 day trial from the Evisense website.

*Annual saving based on 1 photo per week per pupil in a single form entry primary school. Savings calculations available on request. 


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