I smiled on reading some of the principles explicitly articulated in the rationale for the draft performance descriptors; “setting high standards” is all about being aspirational and I’m a big fan of using a “range of evidence” to inform summative assessment judgements. I was pleasantly surprised by the breadth and quality of the draft performance descriptors. I basked in a particularly warm glow at “reading for pleasure” being top of the bullet-points at every level, oops, sorry, I mean step/stage/phase.
There are some things I’m not sure about. Questions I need to ponder. Here’s one of them. Whilst I applaud the notion that achievement beyong age-related expectations should be about exploring “the curriculum in greater depth…building on the breadth of their knowledge and skills within that key stage” rather than simply moving onto the next chunk of content from the year/key stage beyond, I’m not sure about calling this “Mastery.”
It’s good that the first consultation question asks us about the suitability of current names for the Performance Descriptors. It’s important that we agree on some terms that feel right and for which we can create a shared understanding because we need to be clear about what we mean. Otherwise we could be back to levels again. Just a thought.