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Assessment Policy - Foundation Phase

ASSESSMENT POLICY - FOUNDATION PHASE

It is important that assessment at Edgemead Primary…

•    Be authentic, continuous, varied and balanced.
•    Be an integral part of the teaching and learning process.
•    Be used to assess both learning and teaching.
•    Be accurate, objective, valid, fair, manageable and time efficient.
•    Be bias-free and sensitive to gender, race, cultural background and abilities.
•    Be criterion referenced as far as possible.
•    Be transparent so that learners and teachers have a clear understanding of what the expectations are for any
assessment task.

The main purpose of assessing learners should be to enhance individual growth and development and to monitor the progress of learners. Good assessment helps teachers to know whether learners are performing according to their full potential and are making progress towards the level of achievement required for progression. It also gives teachers guidance for planning future lessons.

The Assessment in Grades 1, 2 and 3 needs to conform to the principles of Outcomes Based Assessment.

Assessment in the Foundation Phase must take into consideration the context and core knowledge and concepts  and must indicate the time that is needed for each task.

The teacher should inform learners of what is expected before the assessment.


Formal Assessment Tasks for Literacy, Numeracy and Life Skills are spread across the term and are completed in time for reporting ie. by week 8.  These tasks are set out on the termly Assessment Task Planner.

Teachers’ assessment should sometimes be complemented by learners assessing themselves, using self, peer and group assessments.

Continuous assessment allows the teacher to assess the learners’ performance formally and informally throughout the year.  Much of the assessment in the Foundation Phase is based on observation - the teacher should make comments in the Observation Book to validate the professional judgement that is often required when it comes to progression.
Professional judgement should be based on evidence.

Inclusivity is a central principle and so it is critical that alternative forms of assessment are planned around the different needs and learning styles displayed by learners.

It is important that all assessment that is recorded be dated.

All the activities which make up the Formal Assessment Tasks are marked in green. Results of each activity are recorded in such a way as to enable the teacher to arrive at a code for each Assessment Task.   The codes allocated are based on the national descriptors.

The nature of assessment at Edgemead Primary is guided by the policy requirements.

Number of Formal Recorded Assessment Tasks for Grades R-3

TERM:                    1        2        3         4       TOTAL
Literacy
(Languages)             4         4        4         4         16
Numeracy
(Mathematics)           3         3        3         3         12
Life Skills
(Life Orientation)       1         1        1         1          4

The Formal Assessment Tasks should be made up of at least three activities and should cover all Learning Outcomes several times each term.  Special attention is given to the weighted outcomes. 

The individual activities of each task are not given a code, but the task as a whole is given a rating code 1 to 4, based on the descriptors of competence.


NATIONAL DESCRIPTORS
RATING CODE                                   DESCRIPTION OF COMPETENCE
4                                                  Meritorious to outstanding achievement
(All aspects of all assessment standards attained)

3                                                  Adequate to substantial achievement
(Key aspects of all assessment standards achieved)

2                                                  Moderate to adequate achievement
(At least half the assessment standards achieved)

1                                                  Not achieved to elementary achievement
(A negligible number of assessment standards achieved)

The teachers in each grade moderate/standardise their marking by looking to see if the work in the learners’ books support the code given by the teacher. The Head of Department does the same.

In term 4, the standardizes evaluation tests received from the WCED may count as the final Formal Assessment Task.