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An outline of our approach to assessment and reporting in 2017-18 - A Quick Guide for Parents/Carers

The Background - In 2014, the Government removed the National Curriculum Levels for KS3 and modified the GCSE Grading system to use ‘Numerical Grades’ 1 – 9.  Schools across the country have been working to develop new ways to assess progress and attainment so that students and their parents/carers know how well they are doing and how to improve.

Basic Principles:  Formative Assessment and Feedback

Assessment is all about helping students make progress in their learning.  At Newmarket Academy we use tests, marking criteria and examples of excellent work to show students the standards they are expected to achieve and how to reach them.  Good formative feedback is acknowledged as the prime factor in ensuring students make good progress over time and guides a student through the steps they need to take to improve.  At Newmarket Academy, we have worked hard to improve this aspect of teaching practice and we are happy to state that we have been commended on the results of these efforts by the Samuel Ward Academy Trust.

Progress - Every student arrives at Newmarket Academy having reached a different level of attainment at their Primary Schools.  Students sit base line tests in every subject, as it is important that we take account of individual starting points when setting targets and monitoring progress.  In our system, Progress Grades take account of how well each student is doing compared to where they started.  All students have the opportunity to make excellent progress regardless of their starting point.

Attainment Standards - As well as advising students how to improve and how much progress they are making, we believe it is important for everyone to know how their level of attainment fits into the pattern of achievement in the school and nationally.  To achieve this, we will be using a 'Numerical Grade' scale.  We believe it is a good idea to use the 'Numerical Grade' scale 1 - 9, the new GCSE grade scale, so that it is familiar to all and students can see their progress as they move through the years.

The Process - As stated previously, every student arrives at Newmarket Academy at a different starting point based on his or her KS2 outcomes.  Every student has a GCSE target grade set, which is based on KS2 Maths and English levels respectively.  Target Grades for all other subjects are based on an average of Maths and English.  Where no KS2 data is available, we will use base line test data and reading age tests to make a best fit allocation.  At Newmarket Academy we believe in setting challenging targets for all our students.  Each year increases in content - So for a student to remain on track throughout the 5 years they have to be able to retain more knowledge at each assessment point/year.  Students are assessed on work that they have covered.  

The student report will include the ‘Minimum Target Grade’, an ‘Aspirational Target Grade’ a ‘Current Tracking Grade’ and a ‘Progress’ measure indicating that they are currently making ‘Above Expected Levels of Progress’, ‘Equal Levels of Progress’ or ‘Below Expected Levels of Progress’ relative to the ‘Minimum Target Grade’.  We have set a ‘Minimum Target Grade’ and an ‘Aspirational Target Grade’ as we believe in all students having a SMART target alongside the more aspirational expectation.

What Progress Will Look  like:                                                                            


Students will receive an Attitude to Learning grade as before; 1 = Outstanding attitude to learning, 2 = a positive attitude to learning, 3 = an inconsistent attitude to learning and 4 = a poor attitude to learning.  There is no limit on anyone’s progress or attainment; students who continually improve beyond the average rate of progress will see their grades rise accordingly.





If you would like a paper copy of the information on our website please contact the school office who will be happy to provide this free of charge.


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Newmarket Academy,

Exning Road, Newmarket,

Suffolk, CB8 0EB

Tel: 01638 664412