An Easy Way to Show Progress for Pupils working on the Milestones and Curriculum for Excellence (CFE)

B Squared has worked with schools in North Lanarkshire to create products to support evidencing of the CfE experiences and outcomes (Es & Os) and the tracking of CfE assessment benchmarks and pre-early level milestones.

Scottish Schools have been using B Squared products to show progress for pupils with SEN since 2001. After Education Scotland’s (Foghlam Alba) formation in 2011, schools began to implement the Curriculum for Excellence (CfE), this included using Education Scotland’s own tracking system. 

Working in Partnership with Schools in Scotland

In 2015 Redburn School in North Lanarkshire were struggling to show the small steps of progress their comlex needs pupils made. The headteacher had spent a long time researching what schools used in Scotland and struggled to find a suitable solution. They had to look at what schools used in England. They purchased our Connecting Steps assessment software and our P Level assessment content and were able to show that their pupils were making progress.

This worked, but there were a number of differences between the Scottish and English education system. In 2016 we began to work in partnership with Redburn School and Fir Park Secondary School to develop assessment content for the Curriculum for Excellence (CFE). Over a 3 year period we went through a number of variations of our content due to the release of the Benchmarks, the Milestones and then the updated Milestones. As the guidance changed, we updated our assessment content.


Assessing Progress for Pupils with SEN with the Curriculum for Excellence

Pupils with SEN do make progress, but sometimes it is at a much lower rate. Schools want and need to show progress, they want to demonstrate the progress their pupils with SEN make. For the majority of pupils with SEN, the benchmarks are still too big, they need smaller steps to work through. Pupils also shouldn’t be working directly towards the benchmarks, they should be participating in a variety of learning opportunities that work towards a number of benchmarks. Our Steps 2 Excellence framework supports these smaller steps of progress and show pupils progressing towards a number of benchmarks.

Evidencing progress is a big part of the Curriculum for Excellence and this is why all our schools in Scotland use Connecting Steps and Evisense together. Connecting Steps assessment software helps teachers to show progress, plan next steps and gives the whole school picture around assessment and progress. Evisense is our easy to use evidence of learning platform where staff can capture and share evidence. The evidence can be linked to the statements within Connecting Steps, creating a strong link between evidence and assessment.

Assessing Progress within the Milestones

Education Scotland introduced the Milestones a number of years ago with Miletones for foundation skills, literacy and numeracy. In 2019, they updated the Milestones to include Health and Wellbeing and made a number of other changes. The Milestones are for pupils working below Early level and cover the important early developmental milestones.

It is important to evidence the progress pupils working within the Milestones make. These pupils aren’t producing written work, they will be reacting to stimulus, making decisions, playing etc. To evidence this progress and their achievements, you need to use photos and videos. Evisense, our evidence system makes collecting and sharing evidence easy.


Evidence Progress with SQA National Qualifications

All schools in Scotland who use Connecting Steps and Evisense can access our SQA National 1 to 6 content for free. A number of schools are using Evisense to evidence pupil’s achievements towards the SQA National qualifications. In a few clicks you can print out books of evidence for different courses or modules.


Connecting Steps

Connecting Steps is the most popular and effective assessment software for pupils with SEND. A wide range of frameworks that are built into Connecting Steps helps schools get up and running as quickly as possible.

Connecting Steps is the standard asssessment system for pupils with SEND across a number of authorities in the UK. The simple interface, powerful features and flexible approach to progress means it works for a wide range of pupils. Connecting Steps V5 brings even more features and now works on iPads and other tablet devices.


Connecting Steps makes recording achievements simple. As well as being able to record the skills pupils achieve, you can also record the steps as they work towards it.


Before pupils can achieve a skill, they need to engage. Connecting Steps can show the engagement levels of pupils and show the progress as engagement increases.


Connecting Steps makes showing small steps of progress simple. Progress can be shown in lots of ways, including engagement and non-linear progress. 

Great Feedback

The best inclusive and equitable solution for pupils with ASN

“Connecting Steps from B Squared is the best inclusive and equitable solution for the assessment of our pupils with Additional Support Needs.” Aisling Boyle, Quality Improvement Officer – Inclusive Education Services, South Lanarkshire Council (SLC)

South Lanarkshire Council
read case study

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Show Progress for
ALL Pupils

Within Connecting Steps we have frameworks for the Milestones, Curriculuum for Excellence from Early to Fourth Level and SQA National 1 to 4.

Steps to Excellence

Using the experience and expertise of the teaching body at the two educational settings, we designed an assessment framework based on the CfE. The framework allows staff to use a common language of achievement throughout a child’s schooling. Teachers use this to support their robust assessment judgements and report on curriculum level achievement. Reinforced by a range of powerful reporting tools, this framework enables schools to represent detailed progress and achievement information to pupils, parents, staff, governors, local authorities and Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Education (HMIE). Steps to Excellence breaks down the content from the eight curriculum areas:

  • expressive arts
  • health and wellbeing
  • languages
  • mathematics
  • religious and moral studies
  • sciences
  • social studies
  • technologies

Steps to Excellence identifies success criteria to help learners achieve the benchmarks for each of the five curriculum levels:

  • early level
  • first level
  • second level
  • third level
  • fourth level


Our Milestones assessment allows schools to show progress for pupils with complex needs working below Early level. Our Milestones content is organised in to the following areas;

  • Communication
    • Attention Skills
    • Preference and Choice
    • Interaction
  • Making Connections
    • Cognitive
  • Self and Expression
    • Awareness
    • Regulation
  • Functional Movement
B Squared framework comparison chart
B Squared Sample Assessment Pages


Evisense is a powerful evidence for learning system. The social media style interface for staff and parents is simple to use, but extremely powerful. Our apps for iPhone, iPad, android (tablet and phone) and Kindle Fire means whatever device you are using, you can use the Evisense app.

A number of features make Evisense the most secure evidence for learning system. A number of controls ensure data is safe and evidence can only be accessed by the right people. If you use Evisense and Connecting Steps together, you can link evidence to the skills in Connecting Steps. You can then view the evidence from within Connecting Steps.


It is quick and simple to capture evidence. Use the Evisense app to capture photos, videos or audio recordings. Tag the evidence to a pupil, add your annotation and click Post.

Powerful Evidence

When you add evidence, you can link the evidence to a range of aspects like EHCP outcomes, IEP targets and more. You can then filter the evidence across the whole school.


Share the evidence you collect with parents to help boost parental engagement. Schools can control parental access. It is up to you if parents can comment or add their own evidence.

Want to find out how our products simplifies assessment for schools in scotland?

Click on the button to arrange a FREE online meeting to find out how we can help make assessment easier for your school

Book a FREE Online Meeting

Autism Progress

Autism Progress is based on SCERTS. It is designed to be used alongside the Milestones and Steps to Excellence to help profile a pupils autism. Autism Progress covers a neurotypical developmental range equivalent to birth to neurotypical 13 to 15 year old.

Autism Progress was developed with Scottish Autism, Autism Wessex and North East Autism Society. Autism Progress is a tool schools can use to help profile a pupils autism and how it impacts them and their learning. Autism Progerss has a range of skills spread over a set of progressive levels in the following areas of autism:

  • Communication
  • Flexibility of Thought
  • Social Interaction
  • Emotional Regulation

Each area goes from level 1 (around birth) to level 17 (early adulthood). A significant benefit of Autism Progress are the strategies developed to support development. We have worked with experts to create a list of strategies for each area and each level to help support your students.

For more information on using Autism Progress to profile a pupil’s autism, click here