Ok - promised myself not to get sucked in again but I have to .... I find myself somewhat agreeing with JB on post 276. If it ain't broke don't break it yourself and then try to refix it - agree 100%. One of the things I analyse in great depth is the breakdown on marks we get in different topics both in KS3 SATS and GCSE papers (you get question by question breakdowns with EdExcel GCSE). Clarly things go up and down from year to year so it is longr term patterns that I look for. For example our students consistantly outperform their equivalents in other schools on fractions, decimals & percentages questions at all ability levels and students, in their self evaluations, say they feel very confident on these topics - clearly this is a strength and needs little attention in terms of looking at alternative methods for teaching. However, for a number of years, we have performed relatively poorly on probability questions and students say they feel less confident on these topics - hence that is our T&L focus for this year. We are looking, as a team, at how we teach probability and what changes we may need to make. Of course the data is more powerful than this even - within the dept. we have consistency of value added across the range of maths staff but this hides individual strengths and (relative) weaknesses between topics. Hence I can use the data to highlight staff who appear 'expert' at teaching a particular topic and ensure that their lesson plans, ideas are shared amoungst the rest of the dept (perhaps electronically or in a dept. meeting). Also agree about not rewriting the syllabus etc. each year - that is one very good example about where we ignored LEA advice - they suggested we ammend our KS3 SoW to fit in with the national KS3 plan - we declined! One warning though - the day anywhere tries to stand still you can be sure they'll start to slip backwads. It is always important to try and find that extra little bit (it also keeps you fresh as a teacher). Our other focus for the next couple of years is the progress of boys who gain a level 6 in their SATS - these seem to make less progress here than their female equivalents. That's what I am looking at now - I don't think that will be an easy one! This may involve T&L but also structures in terms of setting etc.