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  • Level 3 Value Added (L3VA) ready reckoner

    Advice November 2017

    The DfE is carrying out a survey about the L3VA ready reckoner. The L3VA ready reckoner is the tool the DfE provides to help schools and colleges calculate Level 3 value-added measures.

  • Progress 8 toolkit

    Advice October 2017

    ASCL member David Blow has produced a detailed analysis tool for Progress 8 together with helpful notes that include prompts and questions on its use.

  • Analyse school performance (ASP) update

    Advice September 2017

    Key Stage 2 data is now available in ASP (the replacement service to RAISEonline) – this is provisional data for 2016/17. CLA data is not currently available, therefore breakdowns of data have not been published; this will be added at the end of October along with KS1 and Phonics data for 2017.

  • Government response to primary assessment consultation

    Advice September 2017

    Last week, the government released its response to the consultation on primary assessment. ASCL has produced a detailed summary for members.

  • Early estimates of Attainment 8 averages by prior attainment

    Advice September 2017

    ASCL has been working with SISRA Ltd to provide early estimates for 2017 Attainment 8 averages. Schools using SISRA have been invited to opt in to an anonymised data sharing exercise.

  • Removal from sixth form - legal clarification

    Advice September 2017

    Following reports in the media, ASCL’s legal partner Browne Jacobson provides clarification for members.

  • GCSEs 2017: clarification on resit requirements for English

    Advice August 2017

    Following publication yesterday of this year's GCSE results, it has become apparent there is some confusion regarding the requirement and eligibility for resits for English. ASCL has therefore been in direct contact with Ofqual and the DfE to clarify this matter.

  • Update on Ofqual announcements on severe grading of MFL

    Advice August 2017

    ASCL along with ALL (Association for Language Learning), ISMLA (Independent Schools Modern Language Association) and HMC (Headmasters’ and Headmistresses’ Conference), wrote to the Chair of Ofqual to raise concerns regarding the severe grading of modern foreign languages (MFL) at GCSE and A level.

  • RAISEonline update

    Advice July 2017

    The RAISEonline service will close on Monday 31 July. It is important that you save any data you need from RAISEonline such as school summary reports before this date.

  • Marking or moderation errors

    Advice July 2017

    Ofqual has announced that schools and colleges in England will in future have a second opportunity to challenge GCSE, AS level, A level and project results if they continue to have concerns about marking or moderation errors.

  • Ofqual workshops

    Advice June 2017

    Ofqual is inviting teachers from across the country to workshops to offer their perspectives on the assessment of this summer’s reformed GCSEs, AS and A levels.

  • Special consideration: Minimum requirements for enhanced grades reduced to 25%

    Advice June 2017

    The move to linear qualifications and recent tragic events have led the awarding organisations to review how enhanced grades are awarded for GCE and GCSE qualifications.

  • RAISEonline - ASP

    Advice April 2017

    An initial version of the replacement to RAISEonline – Analyse School Performance (ASP) – was published on 21 April. Additional data will continue to be added to the service over the coming months.

  • European Computer Driving Licence (ECDL)

    Advice April 2017

    The Technical Award list has been updated for 2018 and the European Computer Driving Licence (ECDL) has been withdrawn, which means it will no longer count in performance tables from summer 2018.

  • Key Stage 4 shadow measures

    Advice April 2017

    The DfE has published shadow Attainment 8 data using 2017 points. The information shows how national 2015 to 2016 Attainment 8 scores look when re-calculated using a 2017 point score methodology.

  • 2016 secondary inspection dashboards update

    Advice March 2017

    Inspection dashboards for secondary schools have now been updated in line with validated data.

  • Ofqual Guidance: Regulation of GCSEs, AS and A levels

    Advice March 2017

    Ofqual has produced a short video and guide explaining what schools and colleges can expect from exam boards and what exam boards, in turn, expect from schools and colleges.

  • Ofqual consultation on changes to GCSE drama

    Advice February 2017

    The DfE has recently made changes to the subject content, which introduces an explicit requirement for GCSE, AS and A level drama specifications to: “require students to experience live performance, where they are a member of the audience in the same performance space as the performers.

  • Ofqual's National Reference Test (NRT)

    Advice February 2017

    The test is taking place in over 300 secondary schools from 20 February to 3 March. Ofqual welcomes any feedback from our members on the arrangements that were made for the test and its administration in schools on the day of the test.

  • Updated Key Stage 4 transition matrices tool with 2016 national figures

    Advice January 2017

    A powerful subject value-added (VA) grid combines DfE transition matrices (TMs) published in December for subjects with the existing pupil-level data already produced for each school by DfE for the exam result data-checking exercise each October.

  • Ofqual update - November 2016

    Advice November 2016

    Ofqual has announced it is planning to review the guided learning hours assigned to the European Computer Driving Licence (ECDL) qualification. Information about the teaching time assigned to this qualification has been gathered by Ofsted as part of its general inspection activity since September.

  • Rochford Review final report

    Advice October 2016

    The final report of the Rochford Review of assessment for pupils working below the standard of national curriculum tests was published 19 October.

  • Funding for IGCSE Post-16

    Advice October 2016

    The DfE has confirmed that regulated IGCSEs count in the 16-18 performance tables’ English and maths progress measure.

  • Progress 8 scores available in data checking exercise

    Advice September 2016

    The DfE has made 2016 data available. Schools’ provisional Progress 8 and Attainment 8 scores are included. These provisional figures will be published nationally in October.

  • GCSE results - Ofqual analysis

    Advice September 2016

    Ofqual has published analysis of this year’s GCSE results.

  • DfE Statement of Intent

    Advice September 2016

    The DfE has published the statement of intent that outlines the full list of performance measures to be included in the primary, secondary and 16-18 performance tables for 2016, which will be published in the 2016/17 academic year.

  • Exam Results Helpline

    Advice August 2016

    The DfE will be opening its Exam Results Helpline on Thursday 18 August.

  • Ofqual update

    Advice July 2016

    Ofqual has published a key guide for schools and colleges on what they can expect from exam boards and what exam boards expect from them.

  • Entries to BTECs report

    July 2016

    Pearson has launched a new report that it has developed with the Social Market Foundation (SMF). The report looks at trends in entries to BTEC, drawing on data from the National Pupil Database, as well as a series of interviews with headteachers and a poll of parents.

  • Rapid school improvement

    Advice July 2016

    The Education Development Trust has published a report on Rapid School Improvement. The report is important reading material for all school leaders and policy makers in England.

  • DfE Data checking exercise

    Advice June 2016

    The DfE has written to schools to notify them that the June data checking exercise is now open. Schools should take the opportunity to check the list of eligible pupils and their characteristics. Ensuring these are correct can make significant differences to performance tables and RAISE; this data e

  • Ofqual consultation on setting grade standards

    Advice April 2016

    Ofqual is consulting on its approach for setting grade standards in all subjects from 2018, and on a modification to its previous decisions for English language, English literature and mathematics about how grades 8 and 9 are set.

  • Updated Key Stage 4 transition matrices tool with 2015 national figures

    Advice April 2016

    A powerful subject value-added (VA) grid can be calculated by combining DfE transition matrices (TMs) for subjects with the existing pupil-level data already produced for each school by DfE for the exam result data-checking exercise each October and updated in January.

  • Key Stage 1 and 2 assessment

    Advice March 2016

    The DfE has published a clarification document on Key Stage 1 and 2 teacher assessment and moderation for this summer.

  • Inspections update - March 16

    Advice March 2016

    The latest issue of Osted's School Inspection Update is now out.

  • Teacher focus groups for reformed GCSEs and A levels

    Advice March 2016

    Ofqual is seeking teachers’ views on how prepared they feel for teaching the new qualifications for GCSE and A levels. To do this they are holding a series of two-hour, twilight seminars around Easter and they are inviting teachers from all types of schools to attend.

  • GCSE, AS and A level marking review and appeals system

    February 2016

    Ofqual is proposing to make changes to the appeals and reviews of marking of GCSEs, AS and A levels and, it is sending a letter to all schools to explain the main proposals.

  • Assessment of reformed qualifications

    February 2016

    Ofqual has confirmed the assessment arrangements for reformed GCSEs, AS and A level qualifications for first teaching in 2017.

  • New guidance on primary accountability

    February 2016

    In January 2016 the DfE published a technical guide to some of the key changes to the primary school accountability system

  • Ofqual survey on perception of qualifications

    February 2016

    Ofqual is conducting its annual survey to gather information about perceptions of GCSEs, A levels, and other qualifications. The insight gained from this enables Ofqual to highlight areas where more could be done to increase public understanding and confidence.

  • Timetable to track accreditation

    Advice February 2016

    Ofqual has launched a detailed timetable to enable schools to track the accreditation process and likely timescales for all specifications of reformed GCSEs and A levels for teaching from September 2016.

  • A common purpose

    Leader article January 2016

    The English and Welsh education systems may be diverging but both must be shaped by the values of their educators if improvement is to be sustained, say ASCL’s Leora Cruddas and Tim Pratt.

  • Improvements to Progress 8 and Attainment 8 reporting

    Advice January 2016

    Three small but important changes have been made to the RAISEonline interactive reporting of Progress 8 and Attainment 8.

  • Ofqual update – January 2016

    Advice January 2016

    Ofqual has launched an online consultation about changing the review and appeal systems used by exam boards in England for addressing concerns about a candidate’s GCSE, AS or A level marks. We would urge members to respond to the consultation. The deadline for responses is 11 March.

  • 'First entry' definition changed for BTEC Firsts

    Advice November 2015

    The DfE has changed the definition of what will count as 'first entry' for BTEC First qualifications.

  • 2015 summer exams

    Advice November 2015

    Following issues surrounding the quality of marking with the 2015 summer exams, ASCL has been continuing discussions with exam boards as well as seeking reassurance that similar issues will not recur in 2016.

  • EBacc consultation

    Advice November 2015

    The EBacc consultation of 3 November 2015 sets out the government’s ambition that 90 per cent of students study EBacc subjects.

  • RAISEonline data on disadvantaged pupils

    Advice October 2015

    As a result of pressure from ASCL, the DfE has published Key Stage 4 transition matrices for disadvantaged pupils for 2011- 2014 within RAISEonline. Data for 2015 will be published in early February.

  • ‘Coasting’ schools

    Advice June 2015

    ASCL Deputy General Secretary Malcolm Trobe is giving evidence today to the parliamentary committee scrutinising the new Education and Adoption Bill. The Bill strengthens the Education Secretary’s powers to compel schools rated as ‘inadequate’ to become academies.

  • EBacc for all

    Advice June 2015

    The government announced that pupils starting secondary school in Year 7 this September must study the key English Baccalaureate (EBacc) subjects of English, maths, science, history or geography, and a foreign language at GCSE.

  • Changes to rules regarding new GCSEs and early entry

    Advice June 2015

    The DfE also announced that only new reformed GCSEs will be included in performance measures as the new GCSEs come on stream. Legacy qualifications will not count.

  • Changes to point scores for Progress 8 and Attainment 8 in 2017

    Advice April 2015

    Progress 8 and Attainment 8 will be introduced as new headline measures in 2016, or 2015 for those schools which choose to opt in early.

  • Cymru timeline – suggested activities to manage curriculum and assessment and accountability changes from 2014-18

    Guidance paper March 2015

    Changes to assessment, curriculum and school performance measures mean that school leaders will have a range of matters to consider as they plan their offer for the coming and future academic years. This document offers some guidance which we hope are helpful.

  • Key Stage 4 and 5 destination measures data (2011–12 cohort)

    Advice January 2015

    The next set of Key Stage 4 and 5 destination measures data is being published today, six months earlier than previous cohorts, showing the destinations of the 2011-12 cohort in 2012-13.

  • Updated Key Stage 4 transition matrices tool with 2014 national figures

    Advice January 2015

    We are grateful to ASCL member David Blow for his continuing work on the transition matrices tool to show progress using a school's data checking and RAISE file.

  • Update on sixth form accountability

    Advice January 2015

    The DfE is introducing post-16 retention measures for 2013/14 and 2014/15 data. In addition, a new package of accountability measures for 16-19 providers will be published in 2017 (based on 2015/16 data).

  • Inspection, Oversight of and Intervention in Schools

    Guidance paper December 2014

    This guidance provides a factual overview of the respective roles of Ofsted, regional school commissioners and local authorities in relation to schools they maintain.

  • Combined English/English Literature discounting in performance tables

    Advice November 2014

    Despite strong and prolonged discussion with ASCL, the DfE has refused to reverse its decision to discount English and English Literature GCSE exams. While this affects a minority of schools, we know that some will be very seriously disadvantaged in the performance tables.

  • English GCSE results

    Advice October 2014

    This is a serious concern for schools whose students took English Literature GCSE for the first time in November 2013 or June 2014 – and whose students also took combined English GCSE during the same time period.

  • English GCSE

    Advice September 2014

    Nationally there has been a 1.9 per cent drop in A*- C grades in English entries this year however behind this figure the effects of new systems on individual students and schools, are much more complex.

  • Powers of intervention

    Leader article September 2014

    Events towards the end of the last school year have made the basis and extent of powers of intervention in schools of greater interest, as Leora Cruddas explains.

  • Flawed but fairer

    Leader article September 2014

    Duncan Baldwin explores the moral issues raised by the new performance measure, Progress 8.

  • Key Stage 4 and 5 destination measures

    Advice July 2014

    The DfE has published KS4 and KS5 destination measures. The data relates to those students who left KS4 or who took A level or other Level 3 qualifications in 2010/11 and shows their destinations in 2011/12.

  • Amendments to Ofsted guidance April 2014

    Advice May 2014

    Ofsted has made some minor changes to its subsidiary guidance and handbook in April. There is a new paragraph to ensure ‘Inspectors clearly understand the governance arrangements for a school and that they identify and engage with the right people’.

  • Be true to your SEF

    Leader article May 2014

    As Ofsted announces a shake-up of the inspection framework, Tony Thornley looks at how approaches to school self-evaluation have evolved and explores what a genuinely useful SEF should contain.

  • GCSE Early Entry Guidance for Schools

    Advice May 2014

    The DfE published a guidance paper on the rules around early entry in March 2014.

  • DfE publishes assessment principles

    Advice April 2014

    The DfE has published a set of recommended assessment principles to help schools to effectively assess their pupils’ progress against their school curriculum.

  • Updated approved vocational qualifications

    Advice April 2014

    The list of vocational qualifications that will be included in 2016 school and college performance tables has been updated to include all approved qualifications.

  • Reforming the accountability system for 16-19 providers

    Advice April 2014

    The government published its response to the 16-19 accountability consultation on 27 March, describing in more detail the intentions for both performance tables and minimum standards in 2016 and beyond.

  • DfE publishes statement on primary accountability and assessment

    Advice March 2014

    On 27 March, the DfE published a response to the consultation on primary accountability and assessment following the introduction of the new national curriculum. ASCL members will find parts of this document informative as it includes arrangements for the new Key Stage 2 assessments from 2016.

  • Key Stage 4 performance tables: Early entry guidance

    Advice March 2014

    Following pressure from ASCL that early entry policy should be explained more clearly, the DfE has produced a guidance document which brings together the rules for counting the first exam entry.

  • School Data Dashboard

    Advice March 2014

    The Ofsted School Data Dashboard was updated on 6 March.

  • Be Prepared

    Leader article March 2014

    Leora Cruddas suggests some key activities for schools and colleges to undertake ahead of changes to the curriculum, assessment and qualifications.

  • Behind the headlines

    Leader article February 2014

    Bad news stories about the 2012 Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) results don’t give the whole picture of how our schools compare internationally, says Ian Bauckham. Nevertheless, PISA contains important messages that we cannot afford to ignore.

  • Update on destination measures

    Advice January 2014

    The DfE have published the Key Stage 5 SEN and LLDD breakdowns of destination data.

  • Changes to accountability

    Advice January 2014

    The DfE has announced changes to the new Progress 8 measure, particularly relating to the role of English literature and to estimating school performance.