1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Hi Guest, welcome to the TES Community!

    Connect with like-minded professionals and have your say on the issues that matter to you.

    Don't forget to look at the how to guide.

    Dismiss Notice

Year 6 SATs, should they stay or go?

Discussion in 'Primary' started by francesca87, Feb 2, 2011.

  1. Hi everyone,
    I am currently doing a research project for a teaching BEd on whether the SATs for year 6 students should stay or go. I have accumalated 11 questions which i would like as many teachers or people within the education system to answer, it should only take a few minutes of your time. If you could take the time to have a look and post your responces it would be much appreciated.
    On a scale of 1 to 10 with 1 being completley ineffective and 10 being completley effective how effective do you think the year 6 SATs are for preparing children for future tests in secondry education?
    For the next ten questions i am looking for a strongly agree, agree, unsure, disagree or strongly disagree responce;
    1. SATs have a negative impact on children’s learning?
    2.SATs are a useful tool for teachers?
    3.SATs have a negative impact on children’s learning?
    SATs improve pupils’ learning and raise standards?
    5.SATs reduce pupils access to a broad and balanced curriculum?
    6.SATs are a reliable way of measuring pupils achievments?
    SATs are not a cost effective way of securing accountability?
    8.There is a responsible alternative to the SATs?
    9. Children do just as well if not better in Scotlan, Wales and Northern Ireland where they do not carry out SATs?
    Externally moderated teacher assessment would be a more effective way of assessing children’s learning?
    And finally just a few questions about yourself,
    Your age in years?
    Your gender?
    How many years have you been in the profession?
    Thank- you for your time it is much appreciated.
     
  2. tafkam

    tafkam Occasional commenter

    On a scale of 1 to 10 with 1 being completley ineffective and 10
    being completley effective how effective do you think the year 6 SATs
    are for preparing children for future tests in secondry education?
    7 - mainly because secondary schools tend to use the KS3 optionals still
    For the next ten questions i am looking for a strongly agree, agree, unsure, disagree or strongly disagree responce;
    1. SATs have a negative impact on children’s learning? strongly agree
    2.SATs are a useful tool for teachers? disagree
    3.SATs have a negative impact on children’s learning? strongly agree
    4.SATs improve pupils’ learning and raise standards? strongly disagree
    5.SATs reduce pupils access to a broad and balanced curriculum? strongly agree
    6.SATs are a reliable way of measuring pupils achievments? disagree
    7.SATs are not a cost effective way of securing accountability? strongly disagree
    8.There is a responsible alternative to the SATs? strongly agree
    9. Children do just as well if not better in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland where they do not carry out SATs? strongly agree
    Externally moderated teacher assessment would be a more effective way of assessing children’s learning? strongly agree
    And finally just a few questions about yourself,
    Your age in years? 31

    Your gender? Male
    How many years have you been in the profession? 6

    Bear in mind that not everyone will want to publicly post their age or experience, so you may want to offer for people to send it via PM
     
  3. You should also consider hopping onto the Cymru board and asking the same question. End of Key Stage tests were scrapped several years ago. I believe they are still optional, but I don't know any schools local to me that do them.
    The impact on the teachers has been considerable, because nothing concrete was put in place initially and counties have worked things out for themselves over the last couple of years. Teacher assessment and collection of portfolios of work have taken their place, with random schools in the authorities being picked annually for moderation. This has raised the workload for year 6 teachers. A level gained by children through pieces of work over a period of time is a better reflection of a child's ability (rather than performance on a given week), but must be open to lack of consistency. A difference in interpretation of the level indicators means that different schools can (and have) awarded different levels for the same piece of work. There is always the worry, too that it can be open to teachers and schools who are under pressure for good results, giving levels that are higher than should be awarded.
    The impact on the children has been considerable too...positively. No more stressed children. No more boredom as they plough through revision and practice tests, then the real tests. No more feeling..."And what now?" when they are over. We've brought back things like our Summer Term production that, in SATs times, we felt we couldn't fit in for the year 6 and don't now try to complete the key stage 2 curriculum in the core subjects before May which was the case when I joined the school more than 8 years ago.
     
  4. On a scale of 1 to 10 with 1 being completley ineffective and 10 being completley effective how effective do you think the year 6 SATs are for preparing children for future tests in secondry education?
    7 for same reasons as above
    For the next ten questions i am looking for a strongly agree, agree, unsure, disagree or strongly disagree responce;
    1. SATs have a negative impact on children’s learning? Strongly agree
    2.SATs are a useful tool for teachers? disagree
    3.SATs have a negative impact on children’s learning? Strongly agree
    4.SATs improve pupils’ learning and raise standards? Disagree
    5.SATs reduce pupils access to a broad and balanced curriculum? Strongly agree
    6.SATs are a reliable way of measuring pupils achievments? Disagree
    7.SATs are not a cost effective way of securing accountability? Agree
    8.There is a responsible alternative to the SATs? Agree
    9. Children do just as well if not better in Scotlan, Wales and Northern Ireland where they do not carry out SATs? Unsure
    Externally moderated teacher assessment would be a more effective way of assessing children’s learning? Strongly agree
    And finally just a few questions about yourself,
    Your age in years? 35
    Your gender? M
    How many years have you been in the profession? 8
     
  5. markuss

    markuss Occasional commenter

    fransesca, many think me over fussy for wanting to call a thing by the right name (even though it's what most teachers spend so much of their teaching time doing).
    As I see it's part of your degree work, I think you won't be too displeased if I point out that Year 6 have never done SATs. You're thinking of the nickname "sats" that some use (the TES does and spells it "Sats").
    The nickname came about by mistake. When Standard Assessment Tasks had finished and some years later National Curriculum Tests came in, jpournalists and others who hadn't had the national curriculum training just assumed that these tests were the "Sats" that they'd heard of. In fact they're a different thing altogether. The nickname couldn't be official because of copyright. ("SAT" as the name of an assessment process is "owned" by the American College Board. SATs are tests for university entrance. They have been on trial in the UK.)
    In fact, the correct, official and sensible abbreviation for National Curriculum Tests is "NCTs".
     
  6. markuss

    markuss Occasional commenter

    The TES "Jargon buster" has:
    NCTPreviously known and still mainly referred to as Sats, these are tests taken by children at the end of Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 to test pupils’ ability in Maths and English.
    Not bad but not entirely accurate. Real "Sats" weren't test papers at all.
     
  7. Milgod

    Milgod Established commenter

    I'll answer the OP in a bit, but can you tell me why we shouldn't use a nickname?

    We do it for other things and people know what we mean. Nobody has claimed that is their official name, so what is the problem?
     
  8. I agree with SATS. I think there has to be some external test/exam at the end of 7 years of schooling and think that theres enough dodgy schools and teachers out there who fabricate Teacher Assessment for many reasons for it to be a valid assessment. Schools have to be measured externally at the end of KS2, obviously only right that 7 years dont do them but by 11 the vast majority are big enough, ugly and brave enough to be sitting a few tests, usually carried out very nicely and gently by primary teachers.
     
  9. markuss

    markuss Occasional commenter

    Nothing wrong in talking in idle slang/nicknames at all. (In fact, sad to say, but have to admit it, many teachers wouldn't know that their pupils do NCTs.)
    But, in a serious undergraduate essay about assessment, calling NCTs "SATs" (which are completely different) would be a bit of a solecism, to say the least.
    The OP could write in the essay about:
    "NCTs, vulgarly known as "sats" or "Sats" etc." That would show that they know what they're talking about and haven't been "conned" by the popular press.
     
  10. Like a fly to sh*t as always, you just can't resist.
     
  11. markuss

    markuss Occasional commenter

    francesca, ARE you aware that [sats] is just idle and ignorant slang? You might want to question your tutor before you write in the wrong register for a formal piece.
     
  12. Milgod

    Milgod Established commenter

    On a scale of 1 to 10 with 1 being completley ineffective and 10 being completley effective how effective do you think the year 6 SATs are for preparing children for future tests in secondry education?
    7 - I feel they do give children the experience of an 'exam environment'.
    For the next ten questions i am looking for a strongly agree, agree, unsure, disagree or strongly disagree responce;
    1. SATs have a negative impact on children’s learning? Disagree
    2.SATs are a useful tool for teachers?Agree
    3.SATs have a negative impact on children’s learning? Disagree
    4.SATs improve pupils’ learning and raise standards? Disagree
    5.SATs reduce pupils access to a broad and balanced curriculum? Disagree
    6.SATs are a reliable way of measuring pupils achievments? Agree
    7.SATs are not a cost effective way of securing accountability? Unsure
    8.There is a responsible alternative to the SATs? Agree
    9. Children do just as well if not better in Scotlan, Wales and Northern Ireland where they do not carry out SATs? Disagree
    Externally moderated teacher assessment would be a more effective way of assessing children’s learning? Agree
    And finally just a few questions about yourself,
    Your age in years? Not old enough to have seen who shot JR.
    Your gender? Male
    How many years have you been in the profession? 3

    My answers are based on my experiences with Sats, not how I feel they are dealt with at some schools.
     

  13. For the next ten questions i am looking for a strongly agree, agree, unsure, disagree or strongly disagree responce;
    1. SATs have a negative impact on children’s learning? agree
    2.SATs are a useful tool for teachers?Agree
    3.SATs have a negative impact on children’s learning? agree
    4.SATs improve pupils’ learning and raise standards? Disagree
    5.SATs reduce pupils access to a broad and balanced curriculum? agree
    6.SATs are a reliable way of measuring pupils achievments? disagree
    7.SATs are not a cost effective way of securing accountability? agree
    8.There is a responsible alternative to the SATs? agree
    9. Children do just as well if not better in Scotlan, Wales and Northern Ireland where they do not carry out SATs? agree
    10.Externally moderated teacher assessment would be a more effective way of assessing children’s learning? Agree
    And finally just a few questions about yourself,
    Your age in years? 59
    Your gender? yes
    How many years have you been in the profession? 20
    The NCT (SATs) aren't the problem as much as the league tables and over-reliance on them as a measuring stick. However, governments like them as they turn children into numbers, depersonalise education and lead to more centralised control of education. Also, if the results go up or down, the figures can be used to beat teachers with.
    I use testing as a means of backing up and supporting my Teacher assessment. No problem there.
    Sadly, that's not how the government see them...
     
  14. markuss

    markuss Occasional commenter

    "I use testing as a means of backing up and supporting my Teacher assessment. No problem there."
    Not everyone would see it like that, year6teacher. In year 6, NCT score (where there is one) as you know is legally 50% of the final levelling. TA is the other 50%. And neither is meant to "contaminate" the other.
    The principle of teacher assessment in national curiculum levels is that it's an overview of a year or two or three's work in "normal" classwork conditions - i.e. not in tests.
    You surely wouldn't reduce a child's level because they didn't do their best in one piece of work in strained conditions, would you?
    (Or do you mean, you only "use" test results when they give the outcome you expect? That would seem to make them a waste of time.)
     
  15. paulie86

    paulie86 New commenter

    8, in the fact they are formal tests under SATs conditions.
    1. SATs have a negative impact on children’s learning? Agree
    2.SATs are a useful tool for teachers? Disagree
    3.SATs have a negative impact on children’s learning? Agree
    4.SATs improve pupils’ learning and raise standards? Disagree
    5.SATs reduce pupils access to a broad and balanced curriculum? Agree (although in my current school (a middle school) I would say less so than in primary
    6.SATs are a reliable way of measuring pupils achievments? Disagree
    7.SATs are not a cost effective way of securing accountability? Agree
    8.There is a responsible alternative to the SATs? Agree Teacher assessment gives a better picture of what the child is capable of.
    9. Children do just as well if not better in Scotlan, Wales and Northern Ireland where they do not carry out SATs? No expereince but I would imagine so.
    Externally moderated teacher assessment would be a more effective way of assessing children’s learning? Yes
    And finally just a few questions about yourself,
    25
    Male,
    4th year, but first teaching Year 6
     
  16. paulie86

    paulie86 New commenter

    So why in my school are we in "trouble" because our TAs were so far away from our <strike>SATs </strike>NCT results? The SIP said they were supposed to be within 5% of each other.
     
  17. markuss

    markuss Occasional commenter

    paulie, I hadn't heard anything like that before. Just can't imagine, (can you?) how SIP can concoct figures like that! What on Earth can be the justification? Normal work and test work can so obviously be more than "5%" (whatever that means) different. There aren't any percentages in NC levels, are there? (Is it saying 96% of results must be identical?) How do they work out such nonsense?
    Hasn't anyone challenged it?
    What I put above is still the legal situation - NCT and TA equal but totally different in the way they're arrived at.
     
  18. paulie86

    paulie86 New commenter

    Glad you think its a load of nonsense too. He is saying that 96% need to be the same. The head just seemed to nod along in the feedback meeting. I agree with you I teach the bottom maths set in Year 6. Most of my children work at about a level 2/3 teacher assessment, but many may not score a 3 in test conditions.
     
  19. From my experience, NCT seems to take priority and TA ignored almost entirely by the powers that be.
    Are you suggesting that if test says 3a and my TA says 4b I shouldn't ask why?



     
  20. <font face="Times New Roman">What do the Key Stage 2 results actually tell us?</font> <font size="3" face="Times New Roman">Received wisdom is that Level 5 English is necessary for children to properly take advantage of the secondary school English curriculum. If every child in one school achieves Level 4 in English and every child in another Level 5, the published Key Stage 2 &lsquo;league table&rsquo; results would show that both schools secured the government&rsquo;s 100% &lsquo;pass rate&rsquo; but obscure the fact that in one school, not one child achieved the necessary standard while in the other school, every child did.</font> In a Staffordshire Primary school, twenty-two (37%) out of sixty children are predicted to achieve Level 5 English this year. A dedicated literacy skills programme which I have introduced looks like it will boost this number to fifty-seven (95%). Frustratingly however, lumping Levels 4 and 5 results together in the published KS 2 data means that this fact will always be largely hidden.
    To ensure that virtually all children achieve the higher standard of literacy skills, we must cease the &lsquo;whizz-kiddery&rsquo; of subjecting schools to a never-ending stream of unproven &lsquo;literacy initiatives&rsquo; and focus instead on the using only resources which have been proven to reliably produce the kind of gains which this school looks like achieving and ensure that published Key Stage 2 results more honestly reflect the degree to which they are succeeding in achieving this objective.
    PS The resources used are linked to a research project called Every Child a Level 5 English in 2011 and are freely available to anyone. Email your school address to eddiecarron@btconnect.com

    Eddie Carron - Educational researcher.

     

Share This Page