Assessment and Reporting

Assessment and Reporting2018-07-27T15:37:57+00:00

The Assessment and Reporting systems in place at The Farnley Academy are used at all secondary academies across The GORSE Academies Trust; as such, we benefit from being able to analyse the data we collect on a wider scale to identify strengths and areas for development to ultimately ensure our students make maximum progress.  In order to achieve this it is imperative that students understand their current position in each subject; students need to be clear about why they are performing at that grade, how this has been decided and what they need to do to progress to the next level. At The Farnley Academy we believe that it is important for parents and carers to have a clear idea of their child’s current performance and what they need to do to develop their skills, knowledge and understanding further.  We are keen to engage in dialogue with students, parents and carers; we recognise the importance of working together as partners in learning in improving outcomes for our students.

Target Setting

Each student is set two targets in each subject: a Minimum Expected Grade (MEG) and an Aspirational Target Grade (ATG).  Both are driven by a student’s KS2 data (SATs in reading and mathematics) and, in the case of Year 8s to 11, adjusted according to progress they have made since starting secondary school.  The MEG is the grade a student should achieve whereas the ATG, usually one grade above the MEG, is designed to by challenging and something for a student to work towards.

In Year 7, 8 and 9 students are given targets for the end of the academic year.  In Year 10 and Year 11, targets given are for the end of Year 11 and so give an indication of the grades students could achieve in their GCSE and vocational subjects.


There are three Assessment Points for each year group during the course of the academic year. At each, teachers will use a range of evidence (classwork, homework and Iterative Tests) to decide upon a current working grade for each student – this is known as the Assessment Point grade (AP1, AP2 and AP3). Recent changes to the national landscape of assessment (removal of National Curriculum Levels in favour of scaled scores at KS2, and new, more challenging GCSE specifications at KS4) have influenced the grading system we now use in all year groups.

Students are awarded grade from 9 to 1 (with 9 being the highest grade possible at GCSE, equivalent to above an old grade A*) with added grades from a to d included to indicate students working towards a grade 1.

  • A grade 7 is aligned to an old grade A.
  • The government deems a grade 5 to be a “strong pass” at GCSE.
  • A grade 4 is aligned to an old grade C. The government deems this to be a “standard pass” at GCSE.
  • A grade 1 is aligned to an old grade G.
  • The exceptions to this are Year 10 and 11 students following vocational courses, where grades Distinction*, Distinction, Merit and Pass are used. A Pass is equivalent to a grade 4.

Each grade is divided into three sub-grades: eg. 5-, 5 and 5+.

5+ Working at the top of a grade 5, the student has mastered the skills and knowledge associated with grade 5.
5 Working in the middle of a grade 5, the student has secured the skills and knowledge associated with grade 5.
5- Working at the bottom of a grade 5, the student is developing the skills and knowledge associated with grade 5.

Reporting and Effort Grades

Parents and carers will receive a copy of their child’s summary report in the post after each Assessment Point, detailing ATGs, MEGs and current working grades for all subjects.  This report also includes effort grades for each subject; the effort grade descriptors can be seen below (the descriptors should be used with a ‘best fit’ approach).

An Outstanding Learner:

  • demonstrates high aspirations through engagement and focus in lessons;
  • presents work to an exceptional standard at all times;
  • confidently articulates both progress made and areas for development;
  • actively seeks to improve the quality and accuracy of work;
  • shows initiative and leads own learning.

A Good Learner:

  • is focused and engaged in lessons;
  • takes pride in consistently presenting work well;
  • can describe both progress made and areas for development;
  • meets all homework deadlines;
  • responds to teacher feedback to improve quality and accuracy of work.

A Requiring Improvement learner:

  • demonstrates a lack of consistent focus and engagement in lessons;
  • spends an inadequate amount of time on tasks or rushes to complete work;
  • is inconsistent in the presentational standards of work;
  • meets most, but not all, homework deadlines;

An Unsatisfactory learner:

  • regularly lacks focus and engagement in lessons;
  • frequently fails to meet homework deadlines;
  • leaves work incomplete and shows a lack of pride in presentation;
  • is late to lessons or absent for unacceptable reasons;
  • disrupts the learning of other students.

The report also includes on track information; if a student is deemed to be on track, this means they are doing everything they can to achieve their target by the end of the year, although they may not, in all cases, meet that target. If they are not on track, a reason will be provided as to why.  Once a year, this report will also include comments from Form Tutor and Head of Year.  Examples of summary reports are available here for KS3 and here for KS4.

In additional, students receive subject-specific guidance from their teachers in the form of yellow Assessment Point Records which are stuck into their exercise books following each Assessment Point.  These demonstrate to students what precise skills, knowledge or understanding they need to improve upon to progress, and will also include a more generic piece of advice on how to revise or practise for that subject.  Parents and carers are encouraged to review these pages with their child and discuss with them the progress they have made and how they can improve further.

Parents’ Evening

Parents’ evenings are an important opportunity for parents and carers to discuss their child’s progress; these take place twice a year in the following formats:

Year 7 Year 2 Year 9 Year 10 Year 11
Parents’ Evening 1 is an “informal” evening with Form Tutors at the start of the year Parents’ Evening 1 involves subject-specific appointments with class teachers Both involve subject-specific appointments with class teachers Both involve subject-specific appointments with class teachers Both are mock examination results evenings including subject-specific appointments with class teachers
Parents’ Evening 2 involves subject-specific appointments with class teachers Parents’ Evening 2 is Options Evening including appointments with a member of the Senior Leadership Team