At Chorlton High School we recognise that students have different starting points and are different types of learners.


All students in Years 7 to 9 are assigned a LEARNING PATHWAY based on their starting points (Key Stage 2 performance). Where KS2 data is unavailable we use retrospective KS2 grades together with information from Primary schools. 

All learning pathways will enable all students to follow the same learning journey, however they may travel at different speeds and face different challenges.


All students in Years 7 to 9 will be assigned to their coloured Learning pathway based on their KS2 attainment. The details of these are outlined below.


It is possible that a student could be on more than one pathway:

  English Pathway Mathematics Pathway Pathways for all other subjects
Based on KS2 tests in: Reading Mathematics Average performance of:         
Grammar, Punctuation and Spelling


At Chorlton High School we have always endeavoured to ensure that our students make the most progress possible, regardless of their starting point. To do this successfully we have to have an assessment system that is easy to understand, clearly demonstrates progress and is suitably robust and relevant.

Towards the end of each term students will sit Progress Tests in each of their subjects. Following this they will receive a raw score from their class teacher and feedback on their performance in the exam. This enables student to identify their strengths and focus on the areas of learning that will move them forward.

In our termly reports to parents, we will report if pupils are making:

  •  ‘below expected progress’ 
  •  ‘expected progress’,
  •  ‘above expected progress’ 

These statements will be based on their performance in the progress test compared with other learners in their year group with similar KS2 starting points. Students will either be on the Blue, Green or Yellow pathways based on these starting points.

For example, take the green pathway.


The concept of reporting on their progress in comparison to other learners also reflects changes to the assessment of GCSE examinations. Previously these qualifications have been based on meeting assessment criteria; now examination boards use ‘comparable outcomes’ in awarding grades. In essence this means that they will decide a percentage of students they wish to achieve a certain grade, and they will then apply this to the exam scores of all the students who take the exam that year.

We would like all students to perform in line with our expectations. However, due to the nature of students, some will perform above other students even within the same learning pathway. This is completely normal. The focus will be in ensuring that those students who are performing below expectations will be supported to make further progress.


Years 10 and 11

Target grades: We have high aspirations for our students and so the targets we set are rigorous and challenging. Target grades are provided for all subjects and are generated by student’s prior attainment at KS2. In some cases we adjust targets if there is an identified reason. All targets are end of course targets.

Curriculum and assessment reform: Students are assessed using GCSE grades. Assessment grades range from 9 to 1 with 9 being the highest award. There is no direct mapping from these grades to the ‘old’ GCSE grades, but some guidelines exist. A grade 5 is similar to a C the ‘old letter grades system’ and grades 7-9 awarded for students who have excelled in that subject, broadly similar to the old A/A*.

Current grade

In Years 10 and 11 teachers assign ‘current grades’ for students. This is their current working grade. 



Teachers use ‘sub-grades’ to indicate whether a student is working securely or not within a grade boundary by using a ‘+, = or –‘system. This is illustrated below. 

5+ (A strong 5) – the student is secure at this grade and has shown signs of being able to progress to the next grade with additional effort and practice. 

5= (A secure 5) – as long as the student continues to work in the same way.

5- (An insecure 5) – the student will need to work hard and complete additional study to be secure at this grade. 


Effort grades 

The school uses a simple 1-4 grading to reflect a students’ overall effort in the subject. This now refers to their effort in their classwork. A score of 1 or 2 means that a student is exhibiting excellent or good effort, a score of 3 means that they need to improve, and a score of 4 means that their effort is poor and that there are major concerns. 


Home learning effort grades 

These effort grades follow the same principle as the effort grade but are solely used for effort in work at home.

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