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SATs markers

Discussion in 'Primary' started by DFC, Jan 9, 2009.

  1. What's pretty downright despicable is that Helen Ward from the TES trawled this thread sending PMs, requesting comments, requesting this that and the other - and then the product of that is a story labelling us as "below par markers".... that's despicable and I'd call upon the TES to come and justify how they can use a thread on the forums to source, and subsequently slaughter us like this.
    Thank you TES, because now everyone thinks we're incompetent idiots, we're below-par, we're too stupid to follow a mark scheme - now come on here and defend yourselves to the people you used and then hung out to dry. I won't be buying your publication again, I'm going to request the resources I put in the resource bank to be deleted and all my posts on the forums (and the helpful comments enclosed within - I am occasionally helpful over on supply) to be deleted too.
  2. Why do you think the TES host this forum???????????????????????!!!!!!!!!!!!
    So they can get material for their articles - quite simply!!! And look what they have been given!!!!!!!!

  3. mikeshaw

    mikeshaw Administrator Staff Member

    Hello all,
    The article referred to above had nothing to do with Helen's contact with markers on this forum. As it states, it was written by another journalist, William Stewart, using leaked emails he obtained separately. Links to Helen's own articles are below.
    The new article by William Stewart reflects the leaked emails from Edexcel. If you have concerns about its headline, or any other aspect, feel free to email me directly, or put a letter in for publication at letters@tes.co.uk.
    best regards,
    Michael Shaw
    TES Opinion Editor

    PS) Here are two of Helen's earlier articles:
    https://www.tes.co.uk/article.aspx?storycode=6015292(june 12)SATs markers say they are working flat out to hit their deadlines after the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority admitted some were halted by mistake. https://www.tes.co.uk/article.aspx?storycode=6014841<font face="Times New Roman">(june 5)</font>Fears have emerged that rigid quality control in the marking of key stage 2 English Sats could delay the return of test papers to schools.
  4. Hi Mike, thanks for clarification in your post.
    I agree that Helen Ward has always been, from my experience, a trustworthy and reliable journalist who puts time in to establish facts from both sides before reporting.
    However, perhaps before Mr Stewart is awarded TES space in future, whatever his sources may be, it might be prudent for him to consult both sides of the fence before presenting articles which could be perceived as containing inaccurate facts by those who have been at the chalk face. His report didn't appear to do that.
    I think that last year the SATs/NCT forums proved to TES that what was being said from the outset by markers was much closer to the truth than official responses at the time indicated. Markers were proved correct, and TES presented a balanced and journalistic range of reports throughout that fiasco.
    Whilst the nature of a forum does allow individuals to sound off, and for them to therefore not necessarily present views reflective of all feelings and experiences, I think that overall posters do present info and support (and argument) for each other whereby the true issues can easily be extrapolated by someone who takes the time to read all comments made before making what may be deemed as inappropriate judgements.
    But again, Mike, thanks for addressing and explaining the TES position. I am sure posters will reflect on your comments. All of the above only my view, of course, but perhaps others may have something to add.
  5. mikeshaw

    mikeshaw Administrator Staff Member

    Thanks, Hanow. I agree entirely that the markers' forums are crucial, and have been a very reliable - and appreciated - source for The TES. And yes, last summer they were the first place that markers began pointing out the ETS problems, months before the agencies or ministers acknowledged a problem. Both Warwick and Helen couldn't have written their stories without it.
    Think it's safe to say that Will's article wasn't intended as a criticism of Sats markers in general - simply to expose that Edexcel was sending round emails noting its concern about "some" of the markers. This followed on from problems with ETS' quality-vetting procedures for markers last year, which markers on here noticed and which were among the first indications something big was wrong.
    But, again, I edit the letters' pages of The TES - so if you'd like to send me a letter for publication, pointing out a marker's perspective on the Edexcel emails, that would be appreciated. Can even run it with your name and address withheld, to maintain anonymity.
    Thanks again,
    TES Opinion Editor
  6. I'm noticing an apology is noteable by its omission. Who do I need to PM to have my forum account deleted because I don't feel like I'm particularly inclined to feed the TES more rope to publicly hang us and label us as incompetent with?
  7. mikeshaw

    mikeshaw Administrator Staff Member

    I am sorry for the upset caused. I have also sent a personal message to dizziblonde, as has the author of the article.
    Most of the unhappiness appears to stem from the headline ("Sats in hands of below-par markers"), which some on this forum are reading as an accusation about all markers. That wasn't the intention - the article stated it was only some markers. (If evidence came to light that satanists were getting jobs as teachers, a newspaper might run a headline saying "Satanists gaining teachers' jobs". That would not mean that all applicants for teaching posts were satanists.) But I am sorry it has been read that way, and you are free to email the letters page to voice your complaint - the email address is above.
    Problems with the skills of some markers have been a key factor in previous fiascos, including the ETS debacle last year and Edexcel's use of untrained office staff to mark of RE GCSEs - both scandals which were of particular concern to properly-trained, experienced markers.
    I repeat again - the article had nothing to do with information gained from this forums, or Helen Ward, but was based on leaked emails from Edexcel.
    best regards
    TES Opinion Editor

  8. I am a headteacher and marker and have just had the english results returned to me and they are disgraceful, on initial investigation the marker looks as though nearly every story has been given half marks, on everything, in fact one child who is TA at Level 3 has been awarded higher marks than those secure 4's on further investigation the mark scheme has not been adhered to. I have contacted edexcel, to be told that we can return it. I would like the whole batch to be re-marked, but then if the marking is going to be the same poor quality then what is the point. I have marked papers this year so am well aware of the mark scheme. I can't imagine I am the only school in this position, and therefore, the 'thorougness ' of the standardisation clearly hasn't worked. I feel that the children have been yet again let down by this flawed system. ALSO ANOTHER GRIPE EDEXCEL SHOULD GET PEOPLE WHO ACTUALLY HAVE SOME KNOWLEDGE OF THE SAT'S PAPERS TO ANSWER QUERIES. The person i spoke to had no knowledge of what I was referring to. DISGUSTING
  9. I posted on the other thread... went to one of the schools I supply at yesterday as they'd had issues with their marking (mainly the writing - although the reading did throw up one of those queries we'd all been expecting from teachers not having the "revised" markscheme guidance)... and it was horrifically bad. Looked from the date on the marksheet that it was one of the last schools someone had done rushing to beat the deadline and that they'd made marks up out of thin air - it was a solid level 5 kid getting something ridiculous like 3 3 4 for their long writing or something daft.
    I'm angry because most of us worked so incredibly hard trying to get this done, inspite of edexcel's supid deadlines, and I know I cancelled work left right and centre to get my allocation done properly and on time... and then you get these numpties who just do whatever they feel like meaning we ALL get criticized and hung out to dry.
  10. On another note - anyone else still got schools left unpaid? I'm missing at least an 80 odd pupil school and nothing showing on edexcel site when you do the fiddly with the dates and change them to show future stuff thingee.
  11. dizzi I'm waiting for a large school payment too. I was paid on friday for one school and a single paper for a school I was paid for in the previous payment. Weird!
  12. taj


    Yes they still owe me for 303 scripts
  13. marymoocow

    marymoocow Star commenter

    Still owed for my last 2 schools about 120 scripts, but marksheets only went in at stop marking time and I presume we are still being paid 30 days later so still another week or so to go.
  14. Thongy1

    Thongy1 New commenter

    We are being paid again tomorrow according to the payments part of the website. I went through all of my invoices and schools today, and noticed that I have not been paid for the odd 1 or 2 (or in some cases, 9) papers for one school, so check all your payments with a fine toothcomb; I am about 35 papers down. I rang Edexcel to ask why, but they said I had to e-mail????
  15. <font size="2">Thank you markers for my maths, science and reading results! I had a few surprises with the writing and have dutifully got my fine tooth comb out as I type. I have quite a few children that are 2 or 3 marks off a 5 (children who scored 5s consistently this year and even on their end of year 5 optional sats) and am just trying to work out where they went wrong.</font>
    <font size="2">Anyway my question is...</font><font size="2">On the long writing task can a child be marked down for writing the report on behalf of a group of children, rather than just herself, in the composition and effect bracket. It is just that the child in question scored 7/12 and I really can't work out why as she has covered all of c3 and most of c4.</font><font size="2">Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.</font>
  16. Last question, promise,
    short writing task:
    &ldquo;Fish for sale, fish for sale, get your fresh fish right here&rdquo; called the busy yet happy fishmonger. I could smell the disgusting stench of the fish, I don&rsquo;t know how they put up with it, especially the gnarled old man and his faithful k9 who always seemed to be on the street corner begging, begging for just pennies.
    I looked up and saw a sign which was looming over me like a dark day the sign read Ye old-market place. it also displayed a ginormous whale, I&rsquo;m not sure why? maybe to represent the malodorous though small chip shop named The Whale. I wonder if the whale is where the old man on the corner eats, it&rsquo;s just about all he can afford!
    Composition and effect this was given a 3, your opinions please.

  17. miss informed
    I wonder if it was marked down because there is very little description of the busyness of the place. This is where I think the tests strangle creativity at birth. This child is moving towards being an imaginative writer and surely good writers use an idea(or a prompt) as a springboard, rather than a straitjacket. We should be measuring the quality of the writing, not a child's ability to stick to a boring old task.
  18. I wondered that too, but I thought/hoped, although he wasn't explicitly describing busy things it was implicit that he felt the place was crowded. Many thanks for taking the time to reply.
    and a big 'here here!'
  19. ShowerGel

    ShowerGel Lead commenter

    There's no busyness that's why it's 3. If you could read some of the ones with high marks you'd be able to see how skilfully the child portrays the busyness - that's the whole point of the exercise.
    If only I could show you one awarded 4/8 you would understand. To be able to mark accurately you eventually have such a complete understanding of the markscheme you can't go wrong and are able to mark at speed.
    To be able to mark you need training followed by experience.
    Most children attempted to portray busyness. This child hasn't.

  20. ShowerGel

    ShowerGel Lead commenter

    Sorry to go on about it but if you'd read, say, 350 all about busyness and understood how difficult that task is then read this where the child hasn't bothered to show busyness you'd see why the low mark.....

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