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Achievement, Assessment & Progress

At Riverside School we aim to provide a broad, balanced, relevant and progressive curriculum personalised for every pupil. The pupils at Riverside School have a variety of complex needs, which require particular attention and a responsibility to evidence their progression and celebrate their achievements. At Riverside School, we continue to measure our pupils’ achievement and progress in so far as it contributes to our mission to transform our children’s lives and the lives of their families. Due to the wide variety of learning styles and needs at Riverside School, we believe that a ‘one system for all’ approach to curriculum and assessment would neither be beneficial or appropriate. 

Our Assessment Framework stems from Government policy to move away from standardised assessment levels as we knew them and a drive towards schools deciding how to measure pupil progress.  The national picture indicated that many schools were left with more freedom in this matter than they might choose and deciding how to measure progress and benchmark with other schools was causing concern. However, at Riverside School we embraced this opportunity and are proud to have developed and formulated our own holistic and personalised curriculum and assessment frameworks. In 2015 we introduced ‘Personal Learning Plans’ and ‘Unique Profiles’ for all our pupils and we developed our own set of assessment levels which we named the ‘Riverside Progress Scale’.

'‘Personalising learning demands that schools transform their response to the learner from the largely standardised to the highly personalised’' - Hargreaves 2009

Our Assessment Journey
Our curriculum and assessment journey has continued to be one of tailoring our personalised assessment systems to complement our very personalised curriculums, as such we whole heartedly place our pupils Personalised Learning Plans (PLPs) and their subsequent Unique Profiles (UPs) and Riverside Progress Scales (RPSs) at the centre. Together they form the basis of both our individual and whole school assessment framework.

As our main assessment is driven from our PLPs, it is essential that we are able to ensure that the achievements made against the PLP focuses are fully captured in a rigorous and robust manner. In order to do this, we introduced our Riverside Progress Scales (RPSs). The Riverside Progress Scale enables us to recognise progress when progress occurs, celebrate lateral progress, develop existing skills and enable us to see when pupils have acquired new skills within a level.

R Levels
Further to the Government’s policy to move away from standardised assessment levels, we moved away from using the P Scales as assessment levels as we recognised that assessment led teaching was resulting in a lack of process based, holistic teaching occurring. We devised our own set of personalised descriptors, our ‘R Levels.’ We took in to consideration former National Progression Guidance and consulted with other special schools to inform our decision making.  Notably we devised a set of early cognitive level descriptors (R1i-R3ii) to ensure we were aware of all the small steps of progress that can be worked towards for pupils working at these early levels. 

Our teachers refer to and use our R Levels to support their pedagogy and help them to guide their pupils individual learning journeys. The R levels support us to moderate, analyse and compare our data both internally and externally. They range from R1i to R18 and can be compared with other schools nationally using different systems by referencing our pupils’ age equivalency (see link below to Assessment Levels Comparison). We have formed a Specialist Learning Partnership of senior leaders with other local special schools to analyse, benchmark and moderate assessment across our schools in order to ensure we are addressing the complex issue of national benchmarking for our unique pupils.

Please CLICK HERE to view our Assessment Levels Comparison chart

Performance Tables and Key Stage Results
Information regarding our latest Key Stage 2 and Key Stage 4 attainment can be found by clicking HERE

The School and college performance measures Website can be found HERE