This short post is linked to my recent reflections on my school’s section 5 Ofsted inspection. Click here to read some of my reflections/tips/advice.
I received lots of tweets about SPOT folders… so here goes…
At our school we have asked all teachers to create and maintain:
S-tudent P-rogress O-ver T-ime Folders.
In these folders we have asked all staff to create class profiles of their students including information about whether they are…
- Pupil Premium
- Free School Meals
- Looked After Child/Adopted
- English as an Additional Language
- Higher Attainers
- Young Carer
- We will also ask for teachers to add students reading age/number age too- to link in with Literacy/Numeracy across the curriculum. And the baseline assessments we do of all students in Year 7.
We ask teachers to annotate this information provided from a variety of internal sources. Mainly the Learning Support Department.
We feel is helpful for teachers to be able to reference the relevance/importance of this Information. It can be found…
- SEN/D- SEN and Physical Disability Register, Pupil Profiles
- Pupil Premium/Free School Meals- PP/FSM Register
- Looked After Children/Adoped- LAC lead/area
- English as an Additional Language- EAL register
- Higher Attainers- HA register
- Young Carer- YC register
- Reading/Number age- Reading Ages on SEN Register and Number age in Maths register.
(To read my blog about some difficulties students face in school, click here.)
Aside from the registers of information, there is also information available online in our management information system available to all staff in and out of school. We provide a Pupil Profile for all SEN/D students, along with a summary of all Statemented students and other information.
Teachers can also communicate with all College Leaders, Tutors or the relevant leads in the above areas. Mostly, me as Director of Inclusion- who can then pass on to the relevant people.
In addition to providing information which essentially allows teachers to know their students. We ask all teachers to provide…
- Seating Plans– These should be annotated (with the above categories, and current working at grades.) The seating plan should preferably include pictures of the students. These plans shouldn’t be static, unless extremely successful. The files, should contain any revisions/changes. Hence, the over time element of the folders.
- Data– We track students at five points in the year. We ask teachers to simply print out their classes tracking information. This is to allow them to map their students progress relative to their end of year targets. We expect all students to make 4 levels of progress. The data team also provide two way tables which track student current attainment to expected progress- both three levels and four levels of progress.
- Tracking– This is the personal tracking method of a teacher. This is essentially their markbook- this only needs to be updated once a term. Could be printed or a photocopy of their mark book.
- Interventions: The English Department use an intervention called a Skills Passport. The Maths team map their individual tutor time catch up sessions too. The SPOT folder is a great way to document the extra support that is being put in place and the impact. The Learning Support Department have also created a document to help teachers reference their individual support before asking for a Teaching Assistant or academic mentor and so on.
- Concerns/Class context– This document could provide information about individual students with maybe attendance or behavioural concerns. Or whether the class is shared, or an intervention group and so on.
- Specialist Teacher/Agency Support- If a student has a hearing impairment for example, the report should be added to the teachers SPOT folder and information adhered to.
- (Scheme of Work- I always add current information on where the students are working- but this is for observations only.)
If observed with the class, it may be a good idea for the teacher to keep a copy of their formal observations/reflection and teacher evaluation in their SPOT file. This can help an observer to support the teacher with developmental suggestions post observation(s).
Now, I know teachers all do this and do this effectively in their own way. However, we wanted to create some consistency in our approach to ensure no student is ‘missed’.
Feedback we have had has been extremely positive, all class teachers have their SPOT files and use them very well! It is an opportunity to keep track and demonstrate their classes progress.
In nearly all lessons observed, teachers were making good use of ‘spot files’ containing information from their assessments of students’ work. They use this information well to target their questioning and decide where students should be seated so they can work well with others.
- Time is provided to staff during INSET to compile this information. Also, directed time during department meetings has and will also been provided for staff to update.
- Data sheets- are provided. Printing will also be carried out for staff. Heads of department also support with the analysis of 3 and 4 levels of progress. Key Stage leads, also look at raising achievement plans with their teachers.
- Nobody is expected to leave these files in their classrooms, although can be useful for an in house cover lesson. Normal rules of confidentially apply. Obviously, there is highly sensitive data in these files, so teachers remain vigilant and professional, as always.
Thanks for reading.