Assessment at Vale School

Intent - Why we assess our children?

At Vale School we recognise that effective assessment is essential to support the quality of teaching, learning, achievement and progress of our pupils. All pupils at Vale School have an Education Health Care Plan (EHCP). We appreciate that all of our learners are unique and are at very different starting points and pathways within their academic journey. They all need different learning targets to develop their skills at different points, which is why no one single assessment tool meets the needs of all our pupils. 

The assessments at Vale School will therefore vary depending on which curriculum journey each individual child is on and so the way our children are assessed is decided on an individual basis and should support the learner in noting meaningful achievement within school and the wider school community. We believe that the assessment of a pupil's achievements and progress should be a story- how much an individual pupil has achieved in any given time period, e.g. a term, a year, Key Stage and overall time at our school.  

Implementation - How we assess our children?

In addition to the assessment tools that are used for our children who access some or all of their learning through inclusion in our partner mainstream schools, we have created our own Assessment framework, in collaboration with other Haringey Special schools. This ensures that we are able to assess our children accurately in all aspects of the curriculum for those children working within the Engagement profile, who are not ready for subject specific learning, and for those who are ready and working within Pre Key Stage Standards. 

Impact - How we know what the children have learnt and how well they have learnt it?

Through our rigorous assessment of our children we can track the progress all our children make whether they are working within our partnership mainstream school, working above or within the Pre Key Stage standards or working within the Engagement profile. This includes personal development targets, spiral learning and how well the children have secured the knowledge and skills they have learnt. This enables us to closely match future lessons to individual children's needs. Our teachers use data to drive their in-the-moment responses to pupil learning, strategically gathering pupils’ knowledge, and checking for understanding to allow for additional input and support to be given.

Ultimately, our aims are long term, and the impact we wish to see goes beyond our assessment outcomes, it is shown in who are pupils are when they leave us and what they are ready to achieve in their lives.

Celebrating Achievement:

Any achievements made by the child/children are celebrated at the time, daily and often. This helps the learner to understand what and how he or she is learning and build on successes. Teaching staff use a range of instant feedback techniques to celebrate progress seen. Where a child’s learning is on paper, marking and feedback is used to raise achievement, set targets and help pupils to improve. Marking and feedback should inform pupils about what specifically they have done well and the next steps to take. For other children verbal praise or their form of communication is used e.g. Verbal, PODD book, communication device etc. 

Comparing the school’s performance:

This is difficult for special schools as due to the nature of our learners’ targets are personalised to each child and national statistics are currently framed in the context of comparisons with all primary schools. 

However you may wish to look at the following -

Vale School performance tables: