SEND: DfE scraps P-scales for assessment of pupils working below national curriculum level

Recommendation from Rochford Review approved

Eleanor Busby

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The government is altering the current system used to assess children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) who are working below the expected national curriculum standards.

The statutory requirement for teachers to use performance scales (P-scales) to assess pupils with SEND who are not working at the standard of national curriculum assessments will be removed, the government has announced today. 

The decision follows final recommendations from the Rochford Review last year for how pupils who are working below the standard of the national curriculum tests should be assessed.

The statutory requirement will be dropped from the 2018-19 academic year onwards to allow the government to make the necessary changes to legislation. 

In its consultation response to the review, the government said it would make interim pre-key stage standards, which assess ability in reading, writing and mathematics, permanent for all pupils engaged in subject-specific learning. 

For the pupils who are not engaged in subject-specific learning – which is a small number of pupils nationally – the government will pilot using seven areas of cognition and learning instead of P-scales. 

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Eleanor Busby

Eleanor Busby is a reporter at TES 

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