Interacting with your subject thermometers and empowering your teachers News article - view all Alps blog post - view all

As you roll out Connect Interactive across your school or college, our Alps consultants will support you in getting the most from the analysis through our regular blogs.

In this blog, Ian Yems takes you through how the ‘What If’ tool can empower subject staff to identify underperforming students and make incisive and timely interventions.

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There are 2 main aspects to climbing the slippery pole of Government Performance Measures

  1. 1)  SLT ensures that your school/college has an appropriate curriculum that meets the needs of your students and fills buckets where relevant.
  2. 2)  Ensure all teaching staff really understand their own student’s progress.

In the last few weeks of teaching for this academic year, there is not much you can do about the first aspect – except make sure you learn any lessons and implement improvements before students start new courses in September 2018.

So, what can you do now?

The key is in ensuring that the process for the collection of predicted grades data is effective and that staff use this information in a smart way.

Often, under the pressure of multiple requests for ‘data drops’ teaching staff find it difficult to afford the time to assigning progress grades that would in the long term improve the overall outcomes for students.

Help your staff review the latest set of data by comparing the predicted grades to examination trends in their subjects. How accurate have their predicted grades been in the past? Are the group of students who were at risk of not making expected progress in the last data capture, still the same group? How easy is it for your staff to understand the impact on progress if an individual student improves by a grade?

Alps Connect Interactive supports you in addressing these questions. Every member of staff has a personal login and can see their own teaching set. As Connect is web based, it can be accessed from any PC or tablet at work or at home.

During these last few weeks in the lead up to examination, staff can model how changes in predicted student performance can affect overall outcomes. In Connect Interactive it is easy to see these changes on the Alps thermometers. Sometimes, just a few grade changes can have a significant impact.

Here a student with a predicted grade of an ‘E’ grade has been updated to a ‘D’ grade – the impact is instant and obvious. If all these students attain the grades predicted, the ICT department will be operating in the top 25% of ICT departments nationally.

Simple and visual tools are the key to empowering staff to truly interact with their own data. Are your tracking tools simple to use? Successful schools and colleges encourage staff to take ownership by relieving the burden of complex systems.

Don’t forget to involve your students through regular feedback on how their current work is impacting on what grade you think they are likely to achieve. Help them to understand their own ‘next steps’ in a supportive and caring way. Motivation is the key to keeping them going over the next few weeks.

For more information and demonstration videos of how Connect can help you visit

If you wish to speak to any member of the Alps Team call us on 01484 887 600 or email [email protected]