Assessment and Reporting
At NIS, assessment is used as a means of monitoring and improving student learning. It focuses on the whole child and is an essential and integrated part of both learning and teaching. Assessment is not a singular activity; it is about both an ongoing process of gaining information to promote future learning and the measurement of performance at a given point in time. To these ends, we regularly use two distinct types of assessment:
- Assessment for learning – helps to identify the next steps needed to make progress and improve
- Assessment of learning – describes past learning and achievement to date.
We equip students to grow and learn, and assessment can help us as educators to improve our teaching and help our students develop and grow over time.
To ensure quality learning is taking place, teachers work in close partnership with the students to ensure that they understand the expectations and learning goals prior to undertaking work. Through assessment tasks, students are then presented with the opportunity to reflect on their own learning, in relation to the expectations and goals, and to accept responsibility for it. In this way, students’ awareness as to the effectiveness of their own learning is heightened. Assessments are designed to allow students to demonstrate their personal progress and achievement and to clearly identify individual strengths and weaknesses. Assessment aims to challenge and support all students.
In the core areas of curriculum, (IPC, UK National Curriculum: English, and Australian National Curriculum: Mathematics), there are clearly outlined achievement standards for each year level. In reading, the PM Benchmarking system is used, and in Chinese Studies we have standards for each pathway/year level. This allows for careful monitoring and assessment of students’ progress and achievement. In addition, we use externally moderated standardised assessments, the International Schools Assessments (“ISA”), for students in the upper years, both to inform teaching and learning for individual students and to provide important international benchmarking information for the school as a whole.
At NIS, formal written reports, compiled by a student’s teachers, are sent out twice a year, at mid-year and end-of-year. They are designed to provide an accurate snapshot for parents (and students themselves) of where each child is at a particular point in time in terms of achievement, attitude and potential.
While NIS has an open door policy, and we welcome regular informal contact between teachers and parents, formal conferences are an important aspect of school-home cooperation, designed to help students achieve their full potential. At NIS, in addition to Parent-Teacher Conferences, we have Student-led Conferences, which provide an excellent opportunity for students to celebrate and share their learning and development with their parents/caregivers.