One of the areas of research at Sandringham over the past year has been on the area of feedback and assessment, and in particular, determining what type and frequency of feedback will lead to most progress for children. The research that we reviewed showed that verbal feedback and carefully managed peer and self-assessment are an important part of securing progress, as well as written marking of books and folders. Setting specific and actionable targets and giving learners time to consider and respond are also key findings.  The importance of students digesting and then acting upon feedback to subsequently improve their learning has been the basis of our ‘ReACT’ policy for a number of years.

Secondly, we have also been working closely with the Department for Education on the area of teacher workload.  The Secretary of State and Ofsted have spoken of their expectation of a balanced approach that secures student progress and also removes unnecessarily burdensome marking that is ineffective.

In consideration of these developments, Sandringham School has updated our Teaching and Learning policy that now provides more detail on our approach to feedback and assessment. Marking will be driven by teacher professional judgement and be “meaningful, manageable and motivating.”  Our approach of target setting using the “ReACT” keyword will continue, meaning that students should always know what they are doing well in a subject and what they need to do to improve. Each subject has outlined what you can expect at each Key Stage.

Parents can continue to be informed by looking for set assessments in books or folders that will contain this review of progress and targets to improve learning.  Reports and Parent Teacher Consultations will also provide a wholistic view of your child’s progress in each subject.  You are also encouraged to ask your child how they are doing.  We are realistic that you may not get more than a one-word response, so we are also redesigning our annual Learning Review Day to invite students to bring work that they are particularly proud of to the meeting between parents/carers, student and their tutor. The target setting process will be driven from the feedback that they have been in lessons and in books.

Please find the detailed policy below

Download (PDF, 361KB)

A set of Frequently Asked Questions on feedback and marking at Sandringham are available here

The key report that informed our research is published by Oxford University and the Education Endowment Foundation, called ‘A Marked Improvement’: https://goo.gl/5A8eMd

The Department for Education report on reducing teacher workload relating to assessment is available here: https://goo.gl/KJng1o

The video below contains an explanation of the wider advice from the Department for Education from Secretary of State, Damien Hinds, and HM Chief Inspector, Amanda Spielman.