Each pupil, from Years 3 to13 (ages 7 to18), carries a homework diary and records in it details of homework tasks set.
Homework is set to complement and consolidate work done in class and to allow pupils to work at their own pace. In the youngest classes, pupils may be asked to complete a reading task which may involve parents. For older classes, homework gives pupils practice in managing their own learning, fulfilling targets and meeting deadlines. For IGCSE and Advanced Level classes, homework plays an essential role in developing the kind of study habits and self discipline necessary for examination success, and indeed academic achievement beyond the EIC.
Testing goes on in class throughout the year to enable teachers to assess progress, monitor learning and direct teaching. In the Primary School all children are currently assessed using the English National Curriculum guidelines. In Years 2 and 6, we follow the SATs assessment procedure which is used in the UK. We are currently also exploring Cambridge Curriculum Assessments as a superior assessment to SATs. Pupils in Year 7 and Year 10 take cognitive ability tests (The University of Durham CEM centre - MIDYIS and YELLIS tests) which help teachers to identify strengths, diagnose problems and set relevant targets for examination success. Years 7 to 9 have yearly exams to give a focus to their studying and to prepare them gradually for the external exams they will be taking in Years 10 to13. Pupils in Year 9 take the ‘Checkpoint’ diagnostic tests set by Cambridge International Examinations board to record their level of achievement in English Language, Mathematics and the three Sciences. Pupils on IGCSE, GCSE and Advanced Level courses have mock examinations during each year of their course.
Well-established reward schemes are in place across the school.
In Primary children earn Golden Time when they can experience a wide range of special activities. Team points are also awarded for good work, effort and behaviour, the winning team enjoying special lunch-time treats at the end of every half-term. There is great competition between classes for Class of the Week and within each class for Pupil of the Week.
In Secondary, Key Stage Three students are allocated to one of four houses; students earn house points for work, effort, and contributions to school life with the winning team having a special day out at the end of the year. The Star Awards programme requires students to go beyond the curriculum in one or more of their favourite subjects to attain the subject star - all worn proudly at Speech Day.In the examination years students are motivated more by their own academic goals but other opportunities for recognition are in place.
In addition every month teachers are invited to nominate outstanding students for the Principal’s Commendation, the highest award available.
At Speech Day we acknowledge the highest achievers throughout the school with trophies and certificates.
In Primary reports are sent out twice a year. In Secondary reports are issued periodically throughout the year. Reports are completed by subject teachers, the tutor, the Head of Section and the Head of School to keep parents regularly informed of their children’s progress. Staff are always prepared to provide further information about academic progress at other times if requested.
Regular parents’ evenings, in which parents can discuss the progress of their children directly with their teachers, are also held each term. Of course, parents are welcome to make appointments to see form tutors or subject teachers at any time.