Best Practice

Case study: Creating a post-levels solution

Many schools struggled to know how to replace curriculum levels. Darrick Wood School was among those to design a new system from scratch. Martin Smith reflects on this process and effective assessment at key stage 3

From September 2014, the old system of attainment levels was removed in a bid to allow teachers greater flexibility in the way that they plan and assess pupils’ learning to meet the end of key stage expectations within the new national curriculum.

However, the new curriculum still requires an assessment system to check what pupils have learned and whether they are on track to meet expectations (and to report regularly to parents).

As such, the demise of key stage 3 attainment levels was greeted with huge reticence from schools and created a real sense of panic among many teachers about being told to go away and develop their own assessment methods without guidance.

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