1. The quality of the marking of the writing papers is dreadful. Many of our papers have been under-marked, some by up to 11 marks. We are having to go through every paper and re-mark and then ask for a review. Our LA literacy advisor has moderated the papers and confirmed our judgements. It is not just the borderline children who are affected. The difference between a 4c and a 4a will affect our points progress which in turn will impact on any OFSTED judgements. This will also have an effect on the children, reducing their confidence just as they go to secondary school. The whole thing is disgraceful.
2. Inconsistent marking which is totally out of line with our moderated and strongly-evidenced teacher assessments.
3. The upper ability children have been marked down. We normally get circa 25 per cent L 5's. This year we have two per cent. Our total L5's in English is now five per cent. I'm not sure if this is a quality assurance issue or a political agenda.
4. The marking of the writing papers was erratic in the extreme. A vast number of papers have been under-marked according to the mark scheme, while a few have been over-marked.
5. It appears that goal posts have moved and Teacher Assessments made against APP guidelines have not been matched by SATs marking. Correct spellings are been marked wrong!
6. It is incomprehensible to us how five pupils, clearly working at Level five all year and demonstrating their skills well in the test, have been marked so harshly on the longer writing task. The application of the mark scheme seems erratic at best and bizarre in some places. The pupils are already disadvantaged by being given two non-fiction tasks, which do not allow them to show breadth of skill or recognise that many children are able to showcase their abilities much more successfully in a fiction setting.
7. The chair of governors has instructed me to return all English scripts and intends to write to QCDA and Mr Gove with a claim for the costs of two supply teachers that I employed yesterday so that the Year 6 teachers could scrutinise the scripts and make judgements about the accuracy of marking.
8. Can’t a marker use a thesaurus like children? Do markers know about the use of ellipses and higher-level punctuation apart from commas & speech marks? My children don’t get awarded higher level marks for using these types of punctuation! Is that because the marker doesn’t know how to use them?
9. People who are paid to undertake a serious job of marking papers should be able to add up! They should also be able to assess at least as well as the staff in my school and I suspect most primary schools.
10. The appalling marking of our writing tests is going to cause us great difficulty as a school already with notice to improve. On our predictions and all previous formal assessment of the pupils it looks as though they have all been marked down by a level.
11. The quality of this year's marking was the worst ever. Ironically, it resulted in our highest ever results. There was huge inconsistency between the way different children's writing was judged and in levels awarded. Many have been graded far higher than they should have been whilst others have been unfairly downgraded. If it didn't all matter so much we would dismiss the marking as some sort of bad joke. We will write to parents to tell them to take no notice and concentrate on teacher assessments.
12. The marking of writing is idiosyncratic. There does not appear to be year to year consistency and predicting the outcome is always difficult. Poor marking of writing may or may not alter the overall mark for English. Unless it directly alters a child's English mark so there is no real appeal for a number of children. However, harsh marking can ruin the confidence of a child, their family and their teachers.
13. Simple adding up is incorrect on some of our papers - correct marks would give a level 5! One paper has been lost altogether!
14. This is becoming silly. Our marks are again far away from what we predicted. This cannot go on.