Case Study: Lent Rise School

With many pupils returning to school in the autumn term, after an extended period of home learning, Lent Rise School turned to standardised assessments to help assess pupil performance and inform teaching. Deputy Head teacher Rachael Small, and English Subject Coordinator, Sarah Boxall, explain their reasons for choosing NFER Tests.

“We had previously used another standardised test provider and been disappointed. We found that the assessments did not provide a challenging enough scope of questions, and some children breezed through. Although we do not teach to a test, we recognise that standardised assessments are important to show the impact of teaching, and wanted to use assessments that provide robust data, such as NFER Tests

With many UK schools reporting a decline in pupils’ attainment levels, Lent Rise were keen to understand the impact of the summer lockdown on pupil learning, Miss Boxall explains:

“Covid-19 has certainly had an impact on pupils’ attainment and learning. Using NFER Tests gave us an insight into what areas of learning had been affected. For example we discovered a dip in pupil attainment in maths, but that reading attainment has not been greatly affected, perhaps due to parents being more confident in teaching this at home or by encouraging their children to read books.”

 

“With NFER Tests, we can easily help pupils feel comfortable with assessment and allow our teachers to see how their pupils respond to tests that provide the appropriate level of challenge, the type that they would face in their national curriculum tests. To complement this, NFER Tests provide robust comparative data, allowing us to compare pupils’ performance on an individual, class and curriculum level, and also against the performance of pupils nationally."

With the school facing additional pressure to get pupil learning back on track, Mrs Small explains how Lent Rise School use their NFER Tests assessment data to inform future teaching and learning.

“We used the NFER Tests Analysis tool to input the scores for each question and identify areas of strengths and weaknesses to inform curriculum teaching. The tests and analysis tool provide a great evaluation to facilitate discussions with parents at parent evenings. We are also excited to use the diagnostic guidance included with NFER Tests in the spring term and to track and compare pupil performance as they progress in their learning.”

However, it wasn’t just the teachers that found NFER Tests valuable, Miss Boxall explains how pupils reacted:

"I teach year 2 and I must admit that pupils loved assessment week, even asking if they could continue with assessments!"