11th December 2017
Advice for Heads of Sixth and Raising Standards Leaders in Northern Ireland
I am writing this before Christmas conscious that Sixth Form leaders will want to ensure that their students and their school or college gain the best possible results next summer.
Your Y13 and Y14 students may have taken ‘mock’ examinations in the run‐up to Christmas or will be taking them in the early part of January. In most schools these results lead to more ‘laser‐sharp’ data that can be used to determine improvement priorities at subject and student level in the final five months of the AS and A Level courses.
My first question to you is how robust is your data? Make sure you have quality assured your data with subject leaders, so that you are confident you are not wading deep in shifting sands;
The latter might seem sensible, but how seriously have students taken these exams and how well prepared for them were they? In England many schools are re‐branding mock exams as Pre‐Public Examinations with ‘Results Days’ to try to ‘big‐up’ their importance to students and their parents.
Maximising your results in 2018
This much I know, the only way to improve your A*‐A% or A*‐C% or A*‐E%, or your potential Value Added score for those using Alps, is to raise your results;
The way targets are set in Northern Ireland, and looking at how results are tabulated by the press, it is highly likely that you will be aiming to maximise your performance in terms of A*‐C.
However, why not consider supplementary targets at A*‐A and/or A*‐B (depending on your intake) as, for students, 3A*s open more doors than 3As, and 3Bs open more doors than 3Cs.
Analysing the Mock Results and aiming to significantly improve them – key questions we would suggest asking:
If you are doing all of the above and more, you should reap your just rewards on 2018 Results Day.