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I've had enough

Discussion in 'Primary' started by docendo discimus, Dec 2, 2015.

  1. docendo discimus

    docendo discimus New commenter

    I am an experienced year 6 teacher - I am in my tenth year of teaching. Every lesson observation I have ever had (except one) has graded me as outstanding and the children I work with have always made better than good progress. I work in an outstanding school. When I can shut the classroom door and just be working with the kids, I am happy.

    Despite all this, I have simply had enough of the profession. I have no idea what I am doing with assessment this year. I have no idea about how I am measuring progress this year. I feel completely lost and I have had enough of it. The lack of support, guidance, clarity, organisation, coherence within this new curriculum and new assessment framework is stressing me out and I am ready to walk out of the door.

    I don't want any sympathy or criticism - I just wanted to write down how I felt in the hope that it would make me feel better.
    teacup71 and TEA2111 like this.
  2. Niamhynoo

    Niamhynoo New commenter

    I've just met with ten other year 6 teachers in our local cluster. Everybody is feeling 'lost'. We are just focusing on teaching the children, identifying any gaps in their learning and hoping for the best when they complete the assessments. We're all in the same boat and all we can do is keep focused on the children and know we couldn't work any harder for them. You're obviously good at your job - don't let a new assessment system/overloaded curriculum drive you out and deprive your children of a great teacher.
    nick909 likes this.
  3. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter

  4. docendo discimus

    docendo discimus New commenter

    Thank you for your comment Niamhynoo - there is just something about this profession that makes me feel like a failure at the moment.
  5. NQT1986

    NQT1986 Occasional commenter

    I know just how you feel. I have to say, it's the same in Y2-nobody knows what's going on. We had a staff meeting on assessment tonight where three people ended up in tears!

    Apparently the new KS1 moderation (based on the Interim KS1 assessment document-which is ONLY valid for 2015-16, meaning it will probably be completely different next year!!) is going to be horrendous. You have to come up with a piece of evidence for every child for every point in every core subject to prove why you think they are below/within or exceeding band 2.It won't be a 'best fit' scenario any more-they have to have every aspect.

    That won't take long...!?
  6. CarrieV

    CarrieV Lead commenter

    I went to an assessment update on Tuesday with around 80 Heads, assistant heads, yr 6 and yr 2 teachers. Every single one felt exactly as you do, that they are feeling their way in the dark towards goodness knows where!.
    The interim framework assessments for teacher assessment in years 2 and 6 have been published and yes, children have to evidence that they have achieved all the objectives in each grade to achieve that standard, including spelling and handwriting for the writing assessment. It certainly ISN'T a best fit picture, ALL the requirements need to be met in full. Evidence has in the main to be cross curricular, literacy and numeracy evidence is not sufficient. Children cannot be assessed as exceeding, they can only be "meeting the expectations at greater depth". Exemplification material for year 2 and year 6 should be available in January
    Progress from KS1 to Ks2 will be measured against a similar attaining cohort. So a child who achieved, say a 2A at KS1 will be placed in a band with all the other children nationally who achieved the same level. Their average achievement at KS2 will become the benchmark, each individual child in the cohort will be judged against this average, so they will make more or less progress than the average for their cohort.
    Thresholds for the KS1 and 2 tests will be published after the tests have been sat and marked. Ks1 thresholds should be released early in June ( the tests have to be sat in May) and in July for ks2. Until the papers have been marked, no one will know what the "pass mark" will be. No thresholds will be published for the sample tests already published. Children will be given a raw score and a standardised score ( not age standardised) but will only be assessed as met or not met the standard. Everyone is expected to sit the test unless for exceptional reasons, if a child is excluded from the test a report has to be sent to parents, governors and the local authority explaining why they have been excluded and what they school intends to do to ensure that they do meet the age standard ( and an indication of when this will be!!)

    Of course, all this may well change next year!! The representative from the STA was "warmly" received to put it mildly!!
    cassandramark2 likes this.
  7. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    Everyone is in the same boat. Y6 teachers, Y2 teachers, HTs and SLTs. There's no point getting into a fluster about things we can't control. Just get on with 'the business'. That is, teaching the kids what they need to learn, when they need to learn it and when they are ready to learn it.

    The curriculum itself is fairly straight forward. Yes there might be a lot to get through but we should be focused on what the children need rather than flapping about getting through it all. AfL, as ever, is key. Just teach them what they need you to teach them rather than seeing the curriculum as a set of items to tick off.

    Sod summative assessment for now - what's the point in committing so much energy to guesswork? You'll just end up having a nervous breakdown. Reading and writing is easy enough - neither are going to look very much different to last year. Just shoehorn in a bit more SPaG. Maths isn't much more difficult - just follow the curriculum. Just take things lesson by lesson. That's what the kids really need from us. And it's the kids who count.
  8. summlard

    summlard New commenter

    I completely agree with the above. The new curriculum is very straight forward. Just teach what you need to teach. Focus more on the areas the chn struggle on and the rest will fall into place. The look of the tests shouldn't matter. If the kids have learned it, they will be fine. There is just too much panic for no reason.
    whitestag likes this.
  9. whitestag

    whitestag Senior commenter

    Again, I completely agree with both of the above posts. In times like this, we need to remember who we do the job for. It's the children in our care, not some government pen pushers who keep moving goalposts for the sake of it.

    All this constant changing and messing about just distracts teachers from the job they are paid to do - teach children.

    The fact that a staff meeting on assessment reduced three members of staff to tears is an absolute disgrace.
  10. Jeremyinspain

    Jeremyinspain Occasional commenter

    Teach the children. Make them smile a lot of the time as you do it.
  11. docendo discimus

    docendo discimus New commenter

    Thanks to many of you for the supportive comments. I don't think "Its getting into a fluster" or "there's too much panic for no reason." I think it's a case of caring deeply about the job that we are trying to do and it's reassuring to hear that many people feel the same.
    Milliemoo13 likes this.
  12. hotchoc6

    hotchoc6 Occasional commenter

    I am in Y2 and really confused. Do you need evidence against every point in the interim assessment or the Y2 key objectives for English and Mathematics?

    I would be grateful if someone could clarify this.
  13. hotchoc6

    hotchoc6 Occasional commenter

    anyone? Need help with the above point please.
  14. CarrieV

    CarrieV Lead commenter

    My understanding is that you need evidence for every point on the teacher assessment framework to allocate the "level" for your teacher assessment but that the evidence from the tests will go towards informing your final judgement ( as the tests will cover a broader range of objectives than the framework) and the test evidence will be used for future progression calculations ( but all that might change next year!!)
  15. hotchoc6

    hotchoc6 Occasional commenter

    Thank you for your reply.

    Do you mean you need evidence against every point on the Y2 interim assessment framework for English and Maths or every point from the objectives in the National Curriculum?
  16. CarrieV

    CarrieV Lead commenter

    You need evidence for every point in the interim framework for your teacher assessment
  17. hotchoc6

    hotchoc6 Occasional commenter

    That is what I thought. However the SMT in my school is insisting that I have evidence for every key objective in the NC for a possible moderation. When I went on a course recently, the other Y2 teachers were saying they were using the interim assessments. I told SMT when I returned to school and they said this was wrong. It is the key objectives I need evidence for. That is why I am so confused!

    Is it stated anywhere on the web so I can show my SMT?
  18. CarrieV

    CarrieV Lead commenter


    Following the removal of teacher assessment levels, these interim frameworks are to support teachers in making robust and accurate judgements for pupils at the end of key stage 1 in 2016. The interim teacher assessment frameworks are for 2015 to 2016 only. The Department for Education is evaluating options for future years.

    The interim frameworks set out the standard(s) a child will be assessed against at the end of the key stage for reading, writing, mathematics and science.

    To show that pupils have met the standard, teachers will need to have evidence that a pupil demonstrates consistent attainment of all the statements within the standard.
  19. abacus1982

    abacus1982 Established commenter

    My recent assessment update was all about the interim framework and evidence needed for that against every statement. So if you have the most amazing writer in Year 6 who produces the most wonderful engaging and imaginative texts but struggles with their spelling then they can not be working at greater depth. Ludicrous.
  20. CarrieV

    CarrieV Lead commenter

    Handwriting too is a limiting factor.
    Beyond ludicrous, it's a disgrace.
    abacus1982 likes this.

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