Assessment is an integral part of the school curriculum. It assists in the development of important skills. Assessment varies in nature from subject to subject. It can take the form of assignments, projects, oral presentations, examinations, experiments, practical demonstrations and performances. At the beginning of each year, students are given an assessment overview for each subject. This is a guide as to when assessment will occur for each subject. These overviews will enable students to adequately plan for assessment. The class teacher will notify students if any changes are necessary.
The information that follows is an abridged version of the Dakabin SHS Assessment Policy and relates specifically to senior students. It is informed by two QSA policy documents: Late Submission and Non-submission of Student Responses to Assessment Instruments in Authority and Authority-registered Subjects (2009) and Special Provisions for School-Based Assessments in Authority and Authority-Registered Subjects (2009).
In cases where students do not submit a response to an assessment instrument by the due date, judgments should be made using evidence available on or before the due date. Therefore, monitoring material submitted to the teacher is used. In some cases, the student may be required to complete as much work as possible on the assessment item during the lesson on the day the assessment is due, and this will be graded. In all instances parents/guardians and the HOD are notified if their child submits a piece of assessment late.
A number of situations can occur where a piece of assessment cannot be submitted or performed on the due date. The Head of Department will grant an extension where exceptional circumstances exist. For example: extended absence prior to due date due to illness, supported by a medical certificate; absence due to illness or bereavement or other special circumstances on the due date, supported by parental communication; student is physically unable to participate due to an injury.
The Head of Department is the only staff member who can grant an extension and must be sought no later than one day prior to the due date.
If a student’s circumstances (e.g. illness, injury, bereavement etc) has had, or will have, a serious effect on their studies and results – usually over several subjects and for an extended period of time – they can apply for special provision from the HOD Senior Schooling. This application, with supporting documentation (e.g. medical certificate), will be considered in terms of what ‘reasonable adjustments’ can be made to assessment.
Examples of ‘reasonable adjustments’ include: exemption from upcoming assessment which will present atypical evidence (the student will be able to revisit the assessment piece at a later stage in the course); results from previous atypical assessment to be disregarded; extension; and variation of assessment conditions. The subject teacher and their HOD will determine the specific nature of the adjustments that are appropriate.
In making this determination, the student must still be able to fulfil the general objectives and mandatory aspects of the syllabus. Students cannot be given credit for work they haven’t done, nor for how well they might have achieved had the circumstances been different.