Looking for progress? It is a mirage.

Esse Quam Videri

How do you know if your students are learning? There are two usual ways of tracking them:

1. Check how well they have learnt the specific stuff you have taught them.

2. Decide if they have moved up a generic hierarchy(such as levels) devised to describe ‘progress’ in a particular subject.

I am writing this quick blog because option two is so standard that Ofsted inspections depend on it but my school uses option one and I thought people might be interested in how differently things can be done. The demands of comparative accountability require state schools to use progress measures. The second option also arises because of a distaste within the education establishment for the idea that education is about learning a body of knowledge. The idea of actually comparing schools by checking how many students in a year group can recite, or explain Hooke’s Law or a myriad…

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About e=mc2andallthat

Physics teacher of over 20 years experience who still enjoys teaching (well, most of the time anyway). He lives in London with his lovely wife and insane cat. Please follow him on Twitter @emc2andallthat
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