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Marking: good, bad or is it time to scrap it?

Discussion in 'Education news' started by TES_Rosaline, Jul 3, 2019.

  1. TES_Rosaline

    TES_Rosaline Administrator Staff Member

    How do you feel about marking? Are you in favour of it or is it time to reduce or eliminate it altogether? Has your school taken steps to reduce the burden of this task on teachers? Are you happy with the results? One headteacher explains what happened after he reviewed the marking policy?

    ‘Our teachers now plan their lessons in phases, within which they can mark questions as a whole class, with follow-up time dedicated to addressing any errors.

    Teachers observe and question pupils fluidly, intervening when necessary, and will either give personalised feedback or group feedback, depending on the type and frequency of misconception. Peer discussion and feedback are heavily used to promote mathematical discussion and encourage pupils to collaborate on solutions.’

    Jon Parsons is deputy headteacher at White Meadows Primary Academy in West Sussex.

    https://www.tes.com/news/maths-eliminated-marking-policy
     
  2. moscowbore

    moscowbore Senior commenter

    Let the teacher decide.

    OFSTED will not allow that. Not ever. Such a convenient control mechanism.
     
    agathamorse, lardylegs and snowyhead like this.
  3. nervousned

    nervousned Senior commenter

    Normal marking is fine.

    The insane marking regimes in many schools are not.
     
  4. Happygopolitely

    Happygopolitely Established commenter


    Marking used to mean :

    A tick = correct
    A cross = wrong
    A question mark = doesn't make sense.

    Sadly, 'marking' has now become a stressful exercise whereby the teacher is expected to write a written dialogue for the student. And whereby the teacher is expected to write in detailed prose and be judged on it. And, Marking now = the teacher writing an essay per each student.

    And that is simply crazy.
     
  5. snowyhead

    snowyhead Lead commenter

    But, if that's what the school's marking policy says then Ofsted just have to make judgements based on it.
     
    lardylegs likes this.
  6. moscowbore

    moscowbore Senior commenter

    Why does OFSTED not comment on ridiculous marking policies? Triple marking, coloured pens, interventions etc.. are all educationally pointless so why does OFSTED not openly criticise a school for having a ridiculous marking policy which will adversely affect the work/life balance of teachers?

    If school senior management decided that teachers should dig a 10 metre trench every morning before lessons I assume OFSTED would make comment on it.

    I believe that OFSTED's lack of comment on ridiculous marking policies makes them complicit with the senior management.
     
  7. Happygopolitely

    Happygopolitely Established commenter

    Absolutely. Ofsted - despite their denials - seem to love triple marking. But we all kmow Ofsted is outdated now and they need to go.

    It save a huge sum of money and teacher stress if Ofsted just went. The money instead could be spent on supporting schools in better ways.
     
    agathamorse and lardylegs like this.
  8. Oldfashioned

    Oldfashioned Senior commenter

    Because so many actual inspectors on the ground are so far removed from reality they love this sort of guff.
     
    agathamorse and lardylegs like this.
  9. WB

    WB Occasional commenter

    I tutor several.children privately.

    I took them on when they were in primary school.and have continued with them into secondary school.

    I see their year 7 maths and English books often - there has been a significant drop in the quailty of their work as the volumn of making has dropped.
     
  10. PeterQuint

    PeterQuint Lead commenter

    Hmm. Just posted this, and it's not appeared. Apologies if there ends up being a duplication.

    Our school system has existed for many decades, indeed many centuries, and for most of that time triple marking, different coloured pens, etc., have not been used. Just a tick, a grade, a comment if necessary.

    This system has provided us with some of the greatest minds, leaders, inventors, authors, poets, actors, film directors and designers the world has ever seen. It is a system responsible for everything from the television to Harry Potter, the iPhone to the internet. The Beatles to Simon Armitage. Michael Powell to Danny Boyle.

    Nick Gibb is not my political cup of tea, to say the least. But he has risen to the not inconsiderable rank of Minister of State for Schools. He's got there through our old education system. He has seen close up the work of Ofsted, and been in role during the whole triple marking thing. And he says teachers are wasting time marking in different coloured pens, and should just put a tick and a grade. It's what he's seen work. It's what his Oxbridge elite has seen work. It's what has produced the great and the good of our history.

    For me, that's a hell of a lot of evidence that time-consuming marking is unnecessary and a complete waste of time.

    I am prepared to change my mind if I see a body of evidence greater than that.
     
    lardylegs, snowyhead and agathamorse like this.
  11. moscowbore

    moscowbore Senior commenter

    With respect, no one here will be disagreeing with you, but, OFSTED and ridiculous marking will continue. OFSTED need to come right out and criticize ridiculous marking and award RI to a school and it would disappear overnight.
     
    agathamorse likes this.
  12. snowyhead

    snowyhead Lead commenter

    I see. In your opinion then, how much marking should teachers be recording in children's books to ensure that the quality of their written work improves, based on marking 60 - 90 books per working day?
     
    agathamorse likes this.
  13. WB

    WB Occasional commenter

    I don't think marking 1 piece of work a week is too much to ask.

    With some children I tutor ir's once or twice a half term.
     
  14. PeterQuint

    PeterQuint Lead commenter

    Don’t you?

    What if you’re non-core and teach each class only 1 lesson a week.

    22 classes of 30 students. That’s 660 pieces to mark each week. Then get them to correct it and mark the correction. Over a thousand pieces of marking a week.
     
    agathamorse and snowyhead like this.
  15. WB

    WB Occasional commenter

    I only mean maths and English - sorry I should made that clear.
     
    PeterQuint likes this.
  16. WB

    WB Occasional commenter

    Does any teacher of any subject really produce 1000 pieces of marking a week?
     
  17. snowyhead

    snowyhead Lead commenter

    In real life ie in the classroom, KS2 pupils (not teachers) can produce that much written work. The majority of primary schools, by way of their Marking Policy, expect every piece of written work to be marked. This equates to 30 maths books (2 pages per child), 30 English books (which could be a longer piece of writing - 2 pages per child) daily; AND at least once a week 30 x Science books, 30 x RE books, 30 x History books, 30 x Geography books. In addition, there could also be 60 pieces of homework to mark, weekly.

    @WB you do the maths.

    I am still interested to know what you believe 'marking for improvement' should look like, given the above.
     
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2019
    agathamorse likes this.
  18. PeterQuint

    PeterQuint Lead commenter

    Absolutely not!
     
  19. PeterQuint

    PeterQuint Lead commenter

    But how much ****-ache I’ve had for not doing so...
     
  20. WB

    WB Occasional commenter

    I've done the maths and that's 480 not over 1000.

    I don't believe all the coloured pens, marking codes and positive /developmental comments have any significant impact on progress.

    I do believe that a teacher looking in the kids' books does inform the teacher when a child is struggling. Many kids will be sloppy if they are not being checked up on or is just plain lazy.

    Marking doesn't help move kids forward.

    Not marking means some kids will go backwards.
     

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