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‘To do marking and feedback right takes three days for every fortnight of teaching.

Discussion in 'Education news' started by TES_Rosaline, Jan 22, 2016.

  1. Godmeister

    Godmeister Occasional commenter

    Same here in terms of minimal marking. If I'd got things correct and therefore excellent marks, my teachers put comments like "Well done! Keep it up." I took that to mean I had done well and should keep on doing what I had been doing funnily enough. I did not need a multi-coloured dialogue with my teachers to understand that. If my work wasn't as good, I got feedback along the lines of "This needs improving by..." and I dutifully did whatever they had asked on the next piece of work. Or if I didn't understand I went and asked the teacher during a lesson. Again, no pink/green/red/fluorescent yellow pens needed.

    I don't get why nowadays marking needs to be so ridiculously detailed. Is there any proof it actually improves outcomes?
    Anonymity, Landofla and Compassman like this.
  2. marlin

    marlin Star commenter

    But in some schools Verbal Feedback becomes written feedback! :eek:

    Verbal Feedback MUST be annotated and initialled by teacher and pupil.
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2016
    arianasarah866 likes this.
  3. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    Funnily enough, one of my daughter's best GCSEs was in the subject where the teacher was "relaxed" about marking.
    TCSC47 likes this.
  4. NQT1986

    NQT1986 Occasional commenter

    That marking policy looked virtually identical to the one we have to use. I takes hours to mark just one set of books and the children are 5 and can't read it anyway; it's getting depressing.

    What's wrong with
    tick = right
    x = wrong

    in any colour of your choosing. Perhaps with a smiley face drawn if it's really great.

    Is there any proof it actually improves outcomes?

    I very much doubt it! There is probably lots of anecdotal evidence proving it causes all sorts of other problems though! I expect that evidence is hidden somewhere along with studies proving things like children have better learning outcomes in smaller class sizes taught by teachers who aren't micromanaged...
  5. Yoda-

    Yoda- Lead commenter

    Is anyone going to provide research to back the above assertion found in the article?
  6. Mangleworzle

    Mangleworzle Star commenter

    I remember it from a few years ago, some Sutton Trust document that listed things that could be done along with cost, effectiveness and timescale to see the change. Feedback was supposedly quick and effective and of course free in that no-one has been paid extra to do the increased workload. How this conclusion was reached or how valid it is as it is currently applied is anyone's guess.

    Here it is, same info another format


    From the Sutton Trust site:

    "The Toolkit was originally commissioned by the
    Sutton Trust and produced as the ‘Pupil Premium Toolkit’ by Durham University in May 2011."
  7. Landofla

    Landofla Established commenter

    I was actually thinking back to my secondary school days too after someone on here had commented about their marking workload in a non-core subject. I don't ever remember having to hand in my exercise book after Year 9. Anything handed in to be corrected was done on paper, except in Maths. I went to a Grammar Sch and everyone did the sch proud in the league tables.

    I also have to question how great it is for chn to respond to feedback the next day. Surely it's better for this to be a week or so later to really make the, think about what they learned. Then we could see who had actually attained the content well enough to apply. Just my thoughts...
  8. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    Ah, the Sutton Trust. Along with the Fischer people one of the architects of the decline in the standard of education in the UK. Should be banned.
  9. Oldfashioned

    Oldfashioned Senior commenter

    In 2005 I worked in a school with 75% A*-C, and I rarely marked books. The same school now has a ridiculous marking policy and exactly the same results, possibly slightly worse.

    As I said in a meeting yesterday, which upset a few middle leaders, if I stopped marking today the students will do exactly the same in their exams. If you pay attention to your class as you teach you'll find no surprises in their books when you mark them.
  10. Scintillant

    Scintillant Star commenter


    One of the most stupid things I've ever come across, in any field

    I despair.
    TCSC47, Compassman and marlin like this.
  11. Compassman

    Compassman Star commenter

    I bet these SLTs that come up with these marking policies are really proud of the nonsense they've produced.

    Oh and if Verbal Feedback is annotated then surely it isn't verbal feedback.
    Anonymity and marlin like this.
  12. Anonymity

    Anonymity Occasional commenter

    It's so hard to say no, though, isn't it? Disciplinary follows. No one wants to stick their neck out in case it's next on the chopping block.

    You end up going along with the stupidity because you have no power to say no.

    I dispair at where it will all end.

    Maybe these ridiculous marking policies help a >little< :rolleyes:, but I cannot believe that the massive teacher input (marking) anywhere near matches the pupil outcome. Especially when the time is taken away from planning and lesson preparation.
    TCSC47, indusant and slingshotsally like this.
  13. Jolly_Roger1

    Jolly_Roger1 Star commenter

    Our SMT lived in 'cloud cuckoo land', when it came to marking policies. Things like 'dialogue marking' for the majority of our students, about half of whom were E2L, just made no sense; for them or us. When students got back their books, covered with copious notes and comments, in multi-coloured pen, it acted as aversion therapy.
    slingshotsally likes this.
  14. slingshotsally

    slingshotsally Star commenter

    In our school, they asked the children their view on this type of marking...

    The children across Reception, KS1 & KS2 didn't like it. It was boring to read, not all children could read (combination of being too young, not liking reading, teacher writing so quickly that it wasn't always clear, or they just hated having to look through it).

    They children without a doubt said they preferred the teacher giving them verbal feedback during the lesson when they actually had the difficulty because they could understand it better and make the change straight away.

    Did they Senior Leadership Team listen to school council views? NOT AT ALL!!!

    Because written feedback is not for the children, it's actually a management tool- evidence that teachers are using various AFL etc...

    It can also be used for capability too.

    galerider123 and TCSC47 like this.
  15. MrMedia

    MrMedia Star commenter

    Hattie's meta-analysis was the original citation for teacher feedback being the most powerful driver of progress.
    However, you should be aware that writing it out to evidence it, is the most stupid laborious and inefficient way of doing it.
    At uni, we have stopped annotating scripts and now just write a formative report on all submissions. When I moved from school to uni I was stunned by the level of accountability for assessment.

    All submission of work to a teacher for assessment must be set out in advance - length, date, etc. Teachers and students know when they are giving work to the teacher for assessment. Everything - presentations, small bits, everything.
    Not all work is graded. There are zero weighted submissions which have to be completed and assessed formatively to help them get ready for the summatively marked pieces.
    Tutorials are used frequently for students to discuss their feedback.
    There is an allocation of time per words for assessment by the teachers. You know exactly how many hours marking per year you will do and this is recorded and factored into your loading. You cannot be required to mark more than is allowed under your contracted hours - planning is very strict.
    Formative feedback is released five days ahead of the summative grade to make them read the formative feedback properly.

    These are adults so you cannot compare. However, some things are quite different and it is always worth thinking if you can improve one system by looking at another. As a teacher, I would say quantifying the submissions and marking so that pupils and teachers can know in advance what is submitted and what is assessed is better than having 'books' to mark. There are no 'books' at uni or indeed in sixth form. Why have them in secondary school? At uni, everything is online. All submissions, marking, grades, library, everything. Everything is done online. We have issues with transitions of sixth form to first year because of that.
    As everyone is saying, if the students are making good progress isn't that more important that having evidence for make believe OfSTEd inspectors?
    slingshotsally likes this.
  16. indusant

    indusant Senior commenter

    Indeed. It brings to mind the old scenario of the finger pointing towards the moon. Look at the finger and you miss out on the beauty of the moon.

    Teachers are now forced to spend an excessive amount of time concentrating on the finger. Feedback, writing up verbal feedback, triple marking etc - all to appease managers.

    And it's to the expense of looking to what the finger is pointing toward. In this case, the learning and growth of the pupils.

    drek, silverfell85 and Anonymity like this.
  17. Mangleworzle

    Mangleworzle Star commenter

    I see what you did there :)
    drek and Flere-Imsaho like this.
  18. vannie

    vannie Star commenter

    I have a very needy year 2 class. Self esteem and confidence are issues for lots of them. Some of them actually cry when they see pink comments on their books. It's just heartbreaking.
    galerider123 likes this.
  19. Applewhaite

    Applewhaite New commenter

  20. Applewhaite

    Applewhaite New commenter

    I agree with you. Marking may show progress but does not mean these students will perform better in exams. The analysis on this rigorous method of formative marking is inconclusive on final grades. Focuses marking is better based on a core of the curriculum to assess where students really are.

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