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RIG for SEND Assessment Overview

Research and Innovation Group (RIG) for SEND assessment: responding to the Rochford Review and their review of assessment for pupils working below the standard of national curriculum tests.

Recommendation 8 of the Rochford Review:

Schools should work collaboratively to develop an understanding of good practice in assessing pupils working below the national standard of national curriculum tests, particularly across different educational settings. Schools should support this by actively engaging in quality assurance.

During the academic year 2017-18, a group of schools worked together to investigate best practice in assessment and to investigate how pupil's development could be best assessed in all 4 areas of need outlined in the  SEND Code of Practice  as recommended by the Rochford Review. We did this by visiting best practice in schools from across the country and also trialling different assessment tools and approaches in our own classrooms, as well as discussing the appropriateness of these in order to develop our own bespoke whole school approaches.

Our aim was to create a common language across the Local Authority and a 'basketful' of assessment tools, approaches and strategies in order that schools could pick elements of it that worked for their individual settings and cohorts. Due to factors such as funding, leadership capacity and philosophy, current systems and external accreditation, we have realised just how different assessment is likely to look in each and every setting if it is to be truly personalised. Therefore it is essential that schools use the whole school guide (see Life After P Scales) and work collaboratively with relevant settings to develop their own assessment approaches using the 'basketful' that work in their individual settings for their cohort(s); building on current whole school assessment strengths where relevant, but whilst feeling liberated to ask why they are doing what they are doing to create new and innovative approaches to assessment for their SEND learners.

Going forward we hope that through our common languages such as that of the pre-key standards, MAPP, engagement and the language for assessment for example, that schools will be able to collaborate to quality assure and moderate each other's practices and evidence with relevant settings across the local authority and beyond.

Share your case studies

Our aim is for this basketful to grow. Therefore as schools develop further recommended assessment tools across provisions, or as schools develop their own approaches to pre-key stage standard assessment, we would love schools to add their own case studies across mainstream, SRP and specialist settings for others to learn from. Please send your case studies in to  mycaremysupport@swindon.gov.uk and we will publish your experiences in the school resources section of this website.

With thanks to the following schools who were the core RIG Team:

  • Uplands
  • Red Oaks
  • Crowdys Hill
  • Even Swindon
  • St. Francis
  • Brimble Hill
  • Belmont, Cheltenham

And to all the additional mainstream schools who joined towards the end of the project who are continuing the work of the RIG to develop pre-key stage standard assessment practices for mainstream schools going forward.

View Swindon's 'basketful' of assessment tools, approaches and strategies:


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