The frameworks are written primarily for test writers. They set out what will and will not be assessed by the statutory national tests, how each element will be assessed, the proposed structure of each test and what standard pupils will be expected to achieve. They are not designed to be used to guide teaching and learning or to inform statutory teacher assessment.
Draft frameworks for the new national assessments that will be introduced in summer 2016 are now available and can be downloaded from the gov.uk website .
The key sections of the framework documents are:
- the nature of the test (particularly the test format)
- the content assessed
- the ‘cognitive domain’ in other words the thinking skills and intellectual processes assessed (e.g. problem solving, reasoning)
- the test specification, including the performance descriptor.
It is very important to note that the tests do not cover all the content or skills of the national curriculum for the core subjects. The tests focus on what can be assessed in a paper-based, written, externally-marked test. The document states the areas of the curriculum that are outside the scope of the national tests and that need to be assessed by teacher assessment.
Each of the framework documents includes a performance descriptor that describes the ‘typical characteristics of children whose performance in the Key Stage 2 tests is at the threshold of the expected standard.’ These characteristics are intended as a general guide rather than a prescriptive list. In order to achieve the expected standard, children will have been able to engage with all questions within the test, even if they have not answered them all correctly.
Below is a summary of the four frameworks for Key Stage 2: reading; grammar, punctuation and spelling; mathematics and the sampling tests for science. A separate summary of the frameworks for Key Stage 1 will be published soon. Continue reading →