How well are the All-Wales Core Data Sets used to inform self-evaluation and planning for improvement? - June 2012

Summary

The report is intended mainly for staff in schools and local authorities. The report may also be useful to inform the further development of the core data sets, accompanying guidance and governor training. The newly-formed consortia should also consider the best practice highlighted in the report in planning how they will use the core data sets.

Recommendations

Schools should:

  • use the core data sets to challenge themselves to do as well as the best practice identified in other similar schools, including those in their family of schools;
  • make more effective use of ‘modelled expected performance’ charts;
  • analyse the performance of pupils entitled to free school meals more thoroughly and base improvement strategies on the findings; and
  • make sure that governors understand fully the school’s performance data, including position in the family and the free-school-meal benchmark quarters, and that they play a key role in self-evaluation and planning for improvement.

Local authorities should:

  • ensure that the performance information and analyses that they provide to schools complement and do not duplicate the core data sets; and
  • train school leaders and governors to analyse the core data sets better and to use the findings to identify what needs to improve.

The Welsh Government should:

  • consider including data on non-core subjects in the key stage 4 data sets.

 Best practice case studies

You can read the following examples of best practice in the main body of the report:

  • Revising self-evaluation documents to make effective use of the All-Wales Core Data Sets in planning for improvement - King Henry VIII Comprehensive School, Monmouthshire
  • Improving performance on the level 2 threshold including English or Welsh first language and mathematics - Neath Port Talbot local authority
  • Working with school leaders and governors to improve schools’ capacity to evaluate their performance - Newport local authority
  • Strategies to improve level 3 and level 5 outcomes in the core subjects at key stage 1 and key stage 2 - Glan Usk Primary School, Newport
  • Additional support and target setting for pupils in a school with a high number of pupils eligible for free school meals - Fitzalan High School, Cardiff
  • The benefits of family networks - The south east Wales Welsh-medium secondary schools’ family professional network includes: Ysgol Gyfun Cwm Rhymni, Ysgol Gyfun Rhydywaun, Ysgol Gyfun Gwynllyw, Ysgol Gyfun Y Cymer and Ysgol Gyfun Llangynwyd.
  • Appointing a family co-ordinator for a secondary school family professional network - The family network includes the following schools: Penglais (Ceredigion), Pencoed (Bridgend), Llanishen (Cardiff), Queen Elizabeth (Carmarthenshire), Olchfa (Swansea), Sir Thomas Picton and Ysgol Dewi Sant (Pembrokeshire), Llantwit Major (The Vale of Glamorgan), St. David’s (Flintshire), Llandrindod High School and John Beddoes School (Powys)

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