Assessment Overview


1)    Formative Assessment (you may hear this referred to as Assessment for Learning-AFL): This is the on-going assessment which is what practitioners do on a daily basis to make decisions about what your child has learned or can do already so as to help your child move on in their learning –it informs the next steps for your child and will therefore inform the class teacher’s planning. The teacher will be able to monitor how well your child is progressing towards the end of EYFS profile assessment.

Definition from the Assessment Reform group (2002):

Assessment for learning is the process of seeking and interpreting evidence for use by learners and their teachers to decide where the learners are in their learning, where they need to go and how best to get there.’


2)    Summative Assessment: This type of assessment ‘sums up’ all the different information from ongoing assessments that have been made about your child during their early years and KS1.  It is assessment that is required by the DfE they will request it at two points; at the end of reception and at the end of KS1 when your child is in year 2 (Your child will also have been assessed between 24-36 months prior to joining us). The school will also complete a Baseline assessment of your child using ‘Development Matters’ (See following section on DM for more information) upon entry. This assessment is made collaboratively between school, parents/carers and practitioners. The Baseline will identify your child’s interests, strengths and their learning and development needs (You will be asked for consent to allow other professionals to contribute e.g. SALT).  They will be given an assessment in the form of a developmental band in the 7 areas of the EYFS Framework. The information is added to a record of your child’s achievement/Learning Journey which is related to the Early Years Foundation Stage Profile (EYFSP).  All these assessments are used to record a child’s development/learning at a given time.  The school is then able to monitor progress between different attainment points (e.g. between Baseline and end of EYFS or between EYFS and end of KS1)).


The EYFS profile (EYFSP), at the end of reception, will show your child’s attainment in both the Prime and Specific areas detailed in the EYFS Framework.   The profile will assess against the Early Learning Goals and will not assess development age/stage.  The outcomes for the EYFSP will be one of the following: Emerging, developing, secure.   It is important to note that the EYFS profile is not a test.  


Formative and Summative assessment in Practice in School:


Summative assessment: When your child enters the EYFS department or KS1 (if this is their school entry point) a baseline is made in the EYFS profile areas, using the non-statutory guidance, using Development Matters as the tool to do this.  This guidance is used to track developmental progress towards the Early Learning Goals, which they will be assessed against at the end of Reception. It is a ‘Best Fit’ assessment and assesses where your child’s current development in the 7 areas is. The assessment is recorded as age/stage of development and whether your child is emerging, developing or secure at this stage.   As a Federation we comply with the statutory assessment requirements and then complete the EYFS profile in the final term of your child’s reception year. This profile assesses against the EYFS Goals set out in the framework.  At the end of KS1, when your child is in year 2, they will also be assessed against the KS1 standards.  As a special school, most of our children will be working below the KS1 standards and so will be assessed using the Pre-KS1 standards (Dfe, 2020-2021).  Their assessment is reported both to the DfE and to parents/carers. KS1 assessments are made in English,  Reading; English, writing, mathematics and science. 

NB: Development matters is not a ‘Tick list’ of statements which your child must achieve in a specific order but a set of descriptors which show a ‘typical range of development’.  This information supports planning opportunities for the teacher and to identify and support the teacher in providing for the individual needs of the children. 

Due to the Special Needs of our children, our school continues to assess children against Development Matters throughout KS1 but will also assess pupils who are ‘subject ready’, against their progress towards the National Curriculum Standards.  The school has adopted the ‘Wilson Stuart Progress Steps’ for this purpose.  Therefore, both assessments may be reported to you at the end of the school year, depending how appropriate it is for your child. This WS assessment tool ranges from children working below the National Curriculum KS1 standards to the end of the primary phase. In additional to the DfE statutory requirements, Teachers will also complete summative assessments at the end of each term-end and their attainment will be reported to parents at the end of an academic year through your child’s school report. 

Termly progress demonstrating how well your child is progressing will be shared verbally in parent/carer evenings.  Our own summative assessments are then used to inform planning, teaching and learning as well as professional development for staff; identifying children, groups of children or classes which may require interventions and curriculum adaptations which may be required.  

Summative assessment enables the school to track the progress your child has made towards the end of EYFS and KS1 standards.  There are national expectations for a child’s attainment at the end of each phase/key stage in a child’s school life.  

The typical expected journey for most children in EYFS will be:

• Entry to Nursery - 30-50 entering (Using DM)

 • Exit Nursery (June-July) - 30-50 securing / 40-60 entering (Using DM and taking into account age and time in school)

 • Entry to Reception (September) - 40-60 entering (Using DM)

• Exit Reception - EYFSP Early Learning Goals at Expected level (Using EYFS Early Learning Goal descriptors)

 (reference Ofsted School Inspection Handbook page 67, paragraph 198)

National Assessment of the KS1 assessment is recorded as:

Below the standard 

At the expected standard

Exceeding the expected standard

Those working below the standard will be assessed using the Pre-KS standards and will be assessed as one of the pre-KS standards 1-6

As a special school, this attainment will not be in line with these expectations as our children are developmentally below their chronological age.  However, the children are still expected to make an expected amount of progress based on their starting points.  Towards the end of each calendar year, the DfE will publish assessment data (for the end of the previous academic year) which will demonstrate how well our pupils have achieved and how much progress they have made, in any of these statutory assessment points, compared to all other children who had the same starting point.

 Assessment for learning (AfL): The end of EYFS profile is completed at the end of the EYFS, and as stated above, assesses against EYFS Goals.  Formative assessment is used to track progress towards these goals.   Teachers will also use this daily to inform their planning.  Formative assessments are made through out each day and learning activity to guide the Teachers’ planning. The class team will use a range of strategies to make assessments for learning, including: Communicating the learning intentions in a way your child can understand; share what success looks like; constructive feedback to your child, so that they know how they are doing and what they could do next time; helping your child find ways to communicate how well they think they have done; effective questioning and task/activity planning and through target setting.  When gathering evidence for assessment, the class team will make observations; use photographs; collect samples of children’s work; comments from parents and the child’s own voice.   Existing and new learning will be delivered in a way a way that is appropriate to a child’s stage of development as well as providing enabling opportunities to match their development stage (Please also see Development Matters section in the menu).  You can view your child’s progress towards the EYFS Goals through their Learning Journey, which is recorded on SeeSaws.

Overview of Assessments my Child will receive and reporting arrangements:

Assessment Type


What assessment is used?

Who will Complete?

Does it get reported to the DfE?

How will I be informed?


Upon entry to EYFS (& KS1 if no previous Baseline available)

Development Matters Guidance

The class team/keyworkers will complete with Parents/carers and relevant agencies


The Teacher will share at Parents/carers evening

EYFS Profile

At the end of Reception year, no later than June 30th

Early Learning Goals

The Teacher will complete and use evidence from all those involved with the child

(Including External moderation with Bcc)


It will be included within your child’s end of year school report when they are in their Reception year

School summative assessments and progress


Development Matters and Wilson Stuart Progress steps

The class team

(Including internal moderation)


Reported verbally during parents/carers evening and included in the end of year school report

KS1 Statutory assessment

End of year 2

KS1 and Pre-KS1 standards

The Teacher (Including External moderation)


It will be included within your child’s end of year school report when they are in Year 2