Why every school can benefit from a good Year 7 Transition Question Level Analysis?
We surveyed secondary schools up and down the country asking about Transition. Every school and area has a different way of working but – to help make immediate progress – nothing beats Question Level Analysis.
Firstly, your new Year 7 pupils have already taken six standardised tests in May. Why not use them?
You can get the analysis from these tests before your pupils have set foot in your school. If you choose, you can then supplement them with additional in-house tests – but in the meantime, you already can be acting on the results of the Transition QLA.
These tests can be used as an accurate baseline for your new starters. As Peter Maddock, Head of Maths explained in his article in TES: Three ways to solve the problem of Year 7 maths
Wait before you baseline pupils – if you are in a school that routinely sets pupils on entry, you may as well actually use their KS2 Sats scores. Doing a baseline in the first few days and then using this to set could well be less accurate, despite many people thinking the opposite.
If performance is being upset by anxiety around a new school, then your baseline could well be giving you false results. Even if you do normally set the pupils late in the year, or teach mixed ability for the whole of year 7, try and wait until pupils have settled into the routine of your school before you attempt to do any sort of baseline test that is designed to discriminate based on performance.
In my school, we teach mixed ability in Year 7, but we do use a baseline test to see if there are pupils who would benefit from intervention in numerosity, or, conversely, if there are pupils whose Sats might suggest they do whereas, in fact, they don’t.
For next year I will be changing this practice so that early intervention is planned around KS2 Sats question level analysis, and then the baseline test won’t be conducted until the end of the first unit.
For better or worse, your Year 7 SATs results are the baseline for your Progress 8 scores in five years’ time.
Having an early analysis allowing you to secure some rapid improvement and quick wins with your new mixed-ability cohort is a positive boost for pupils and teachers alike. By using the SATs scores as a starting point, you can view the full journey knowing how you have helped each individual pupil make progress
Topic – based targeted intervention from the start of Year 7
For maths, some schools were able to split their pupils into various topic-based groups, to ensure that pupils had targeted support as early as possible, and made real progress in the first half of the Autumn term. This enabled learning gaps to be closed for all pupils, and to enable pupils the best chance to fully access the Key Stage 3 curriculum.
Year 7 Catch up Premium
Other schools talked about the Year 7 catch-up premium and targeting these additional funds, as well as reporting on the impact that it had. It can also be used for targeted support for disadvantaged pupils and other groups as well.
Teachers at the heart of the Analysis
Additionally, at some schools, all teachers are responsible for improvement in the core subjects of maths and English, no matter what subject they teach. They can use the Transition QLA to be informed of the topic strengths and weaknesses, at either the pupil level or at a class level. This can help pupils to either catch up or to excel at the highest levels.
So, three of the main reasons for using a Transition QLA are:
- Having an analysis before term starts, knowing your pupils’ strengths and challenges in the core subjects.
- Allowing pupils to have targeted lessons in the first half of the Autumn term.
- Making the best possible use of the Year 7 Catch-Up premium.
But what other reasons might you have?
- Maybe you will like the ability to have a report for each subject per class, as well as a report for the entire Year 7?
- Maybe you will like the Pupil Profiles, which shows each pupils’ strengths and challenges?
- Maybe you will like how easy it is to have, with the fact that you can download and send us the data in as little as 10 minutes?
- Or maybe you will just like the affordable price!
Whatever your reasons, for more information about the Transition QLA, please click here and give your new Year 7s a Flying Start!!
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