Exams

Latest timetables are on the right of this page

Examinations and Assessment

Examinations and assessments are an important part of ensuring students are making progress and offer teachers the opportunity to monitor student attainment and plan accordingly for all aspects of the future delivery of the curriculum at the correct level. Assessment for all subjects is ongoing, both within the classroom as part of teaching and learning, and throughout each term with the marking of classwork and homework. However, examinations and tests offer students the opportunity to practise the rigour of revision and exam preparation and to be assessed in a more formal setting.

Internal examinations

At key stage 3 examinations take place in December, at Easter, and at the end of June. They are held in the main hall for the core subjects of English and Mathematics. For all other subjects assessments take place in the classroom. PE assesses students under normal teaching conditions, either in the sports hall or outside.

At key stage 4 examinations take place at the same time as key stage 3 (usually the week before) but are held in the main hall for all subjects. In Year 10 they are trial exams held in December, at Easter and in the summer. In Year 11 the exams constitute two rounds of mocks and are held in December and at Easter. In both cases past examination papers are sat by the students, and they are assessed using the appropriate mark schemes.

At both key stages students will be issued with exam/assessment timetables and parents/carers are informed of the exams by letter. A copy of the timetable is also posted on the school website.

Reporting of internal assessment results to parents/carers takes place after each round of exams. In addition to this parents / carers will also receive reports at each half term. Hence for Year 7 – 10 there will be six reports sent home annually, and for Year 11 five reports, as external exams are taken in May and June of the academic year

External examinations

External examinations take place at the end of Year 11. All GCSE subjects are now linear in terms of assessment with no opportunity to sit modules earlier or resit them. BTEC subjects such as Science and Sport now also constitute a formal written exam papers. Some subjects are still partially assessed using Coursework or Controlled Assessment; for the latter there are three levels of control: high, medium and low.

All external exams take place in the main hall with the school following the main exam boards of Edexcel, AQA, OCR and WJEC. It is vital that students follow strict and rigorous procedures for the external GCSE exams – please see the accompanying Joint Council For Qualifications Information For Candidates on the right of this page.

Year 11 students are issued with their exam timetables in April, with the schedule being posted on the school website, as well as being available on the exam board websites.