Is there any nationwide SP asessment results in England?

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Joined: Sat Mar 06, 2010 5:14 pm

Is there any nationwide SP asessment results in England?

Post by k-2read »

Please can you direct me to where I can find information about the current status/or results of assessments being implemented to evaluate the progress of students who have been taught using synthetic phonics since its initial implementation, or any time since.

This mirrors somewhat my post from 2010, but I have yet to see or hear about any national assessments in England to evaluate the implementation and use of synthetic phonics nationwide. I see reports about a 'light touch' assessment for 6 year old children, but cannot find much else.

Any data would be useful to me as I continue to research this form of teaching beginning reading from here in the US. I cannot find anything on the Forum or Web about this, other than the study results for the pilot, and 2013 evaluation of the assessment, both of which addressed the implementation itself rather than showing student data. I sense that though phonics use is pervasive, the use of systematic, synthetic phonics is not. However, from my reading it seems as though the national check has led to some schools actually teaching it with more fidelity?

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Debbie Hepplewhite
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Re: Is there any nationwide SP asessment results in England?

Post by Debbie Hepplewhite »


The NFER report has just been published but it is somewhat limited in its analysis.

What it does seem to indicate is that the vast majority of teachers now teach phonics systematically - but it also indicates that the vast majority of teachers may well be teaching the phonics alongside the multi-cueing reading strategies - therefore not 'with fidelity' either to the synthetic phonics teaching principles - or to the guidance within the Letters and Sounds publication that many teachers claim to use as their core programme - or according to the guidance which is very clear in the government's 'core criteria'.

However, there are references by teachers to 'other strategies' which may well simply be the language comprehension/comprehension of the literature rather than multi-cueing from picture clues, context and initial letter clues.

In other words, the report, in my opinion, really does not unpick this possibility.

Further, there is no deep analysis of what teachers actually do, or don't do, as their diet for phonics - although if many teachers are only doing 15 to 20 minutes a day, as stated in the report, and this includes to some extent a focus on reading pseudo-words, it does suggest that teachers are not really providing a content-rich 'teaching and learning cycle' - nor fully appreciating the fundamental importance of phonics (take, for example, the number of teachers who consider that the government places too much emphasis on phonics in its policies).

I am currently writing an article which will reflect on this NFER report to some extent so will link to it when it is available via the internet.

This may not be until June 2014.

Best wishes.