What Schools Think?

Longfield Primary School in North Harrow, Middlesex, has been using the analysis and marking service for 5 years and it has, says Deputy Headteacher Emma Watkinson, proved invaluable in many ways, not least in terms of minimising teachers’ workload: “The teachers were finding it difficult to mark and moderate the tests consistently but also funding release time, for three teachers at once, was more costly (or equal to) the cost of the marking and analysis service."

“Of course from NFER we get the analysis of the tests rather than myself, as assessment leader, having to complete that job in addition to my deputy head duties.”

The analysis and marking service also appealed because of its impartiality: “I prefer external markers to complete the work as we use the results for teachers’ performance management; it gets rid of any bias,” she comments.

In her capacity as assessment leader at Longfield, Emma uses the analysis of test results to inform interventions for the next academic year. “The analysis and question-level analysis is useful in helping us to review next steps for groups of learners,” she says. “We implement our narrowing the gaps (based on underperforming groups) and booster (based on pupils achieving lower than age related expectations) groups for the autumn term based on the analysis provided by the NFER service.”

Overall, she says, Longfield’s experience of the marking and analysis has been extremely positive. “Thanks to clear instructions and labelling the tests have been straightforward to administer,” she comments, “the service is good value for money and I think the NFER do a fantastic job – thank you!”

Other comments from schools who have used the service