Assessment should be diverse and relevant to the learner, thereby making it child-centred. Different entry and exit points are relevant in meeting the needs of students. Social interaction and growth should be part of the process in determining the students’ developmental potential. We believe that the main aim of assessment is to allow teachers to determine students’ strengths and weaknesses and focus on how to improve student understanding and consequently achievement.
Assessment should motivate students and improve student learning and achievement by creating learning opportunities that are conducive to meeting their needs of conceptual understanding. Assessment should be seen as an intrinsic part of the learning process rather than an educational concept which is tacked on at the end of the learning process. There is value in determining learning outcomes from the outset. The principles of Understanding by Design and backward designing of the curriculum is important to the development of our curricular objectives. The assessment policy will be designed in accordance to our philosophy.
The written and the taught curriculum should drive the assessment process in terms of summative and formative assessment strategies. The aims of assessment are to:
- Engage students in the learning process and their own learning
- Provide information and support student learning
- Promote deep understanding of content
- Enhance, improve and inform the teaching process
- Promote the holistic development of the student
- Goal or target setting
The four principles of good practice are to:
1. Affirm identity and build self-esteem
Conditions, which affirm identity results in learners improved self-esteem.
2. Value prior learning
Constructivist theory – constructing new knowledge from previous knowledge will deepen conceptual understanding of new concepts and skills.
3. Scaffold learning
This is a dynamic process in the learning experience of a student. Scaffolding new learning to the zone of proximal development will assist students in their understanding of concepts and skills. It should foster a learners’ increasing independence in taking responsibility for developing strategies for their own learning.
4. Extend learning
Promote a student-centred approach with high expectations. Use real-life examples to ensure that learning is taking place, which are then assessed against set objectives.