Clonaslee College

Teaching, Learning and Assessment Initiatives

LOETB TLAR (Teaching Learning Assessment & Reporting) PROJECT (2019-2021)

In conjunction with School Self Evaluation, four teachers are currently participating in a two-year teacher action research project facilitated by LOETB in coordination with JCT, DCU, the Teaching Council and a number of schools throughout Laois and Offaly.

The group’s focus is on improving assessment, feedback and reporting in schools which will progress the quality of learning and drive the School Self Evaluation process. This is assisted by intra and inter school communication to share best practice and a variety of guest speakers to support the professional learning journey. The teachers involved were given the task of reviewing the school’s current practices in relation to assessment, feedback and reporting and implementing and evaluating new evidence-based strategies.

Some of the new strategies that have been introduced include a feedback sheet to accompany Junior and Leaving Cert mock results. It includes focused teacher feedback, which comments on the student’s individual performance in each section of the paper and allows students to reflect on their grade and set viable goals moving forward. Student-teacher meetings were introduced to the Leaving Cert students which took place after their Christmas exams. Each student had an opportunity to discuss their work and how to reach their full potential with each subject teacher on a one to one basis.

The changes that are implemented or that are in the process of being implemented are discussed in collaboration with various stakeholders. In particular, the use of student surveys and a student focus group made up of a representative sample of students from the school body highlight how student voice is valued in Clonaslee College.

(Deirdre Caplice, Linda Fitzpatrick, Catherine Maher, James Madden- T & L committee)

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The New Junior Cycle

Junior Cycle: A broad education for your child

The new Junior Cycle will place the student at the centre of the learning process. It allows for new ways of learning and a broader range of skills to be properly assessed.

What is the Junior Cycle?

Click on line above to watch a VIDEO

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Principles, Key Skills and Statements of Learning

Underpinning the new junior cycle are a set of principles, key skills and statements of learning. These will ensure that your child receives a rich educational experience that has both breadth and depth. Your child will have access to a varied curriculum of knowledge, understandings, skills and values.

Eight principles underpin the framework for Junior Cycle. These inform the planning for, as well as the development and implementation of, junior cycle programmes in all schools.

The twenty-four statements of learning describe what your child should know, understand and value having participated in junior cycle. Clonaslee College will ensure that all statements of learning feature in the programme offered to their junior cycle students.

The incoming students of 2019-20 will experience the new Junior Cycle in all subjects areas.

For more information on the Junior Cycle check out their excellent website www.juniorcycle.ie or for resources www.jct.ie

How student achievement at Junior Cycle will be assessed

The most significant change in the new Junior Cycle is in the area of assessment. A dual approach to assessment, involving classroom-based assessment across the three years and a final externally-assessed, state-certified examination can enable the appropriate balance between preparing students for examinations and facilitating creative thinking, engaged learning and better outcomes for students. The Junior Cycle Profile of Achievement (JCPA) will reflect a much wider range of your child’s achievements over the three years of junior cycle. The JCPA will report on a number of areas, including:

  1. Subjects (State Examination and Assessment Task)
  2. Classroom Based Assessments
  3. Short courses
  4. Other Learning Experiences

Students in Clonaslee College will study 9 subjects for the JCPA and 2 short courses (PE and Communications) for certification purposes. The state examination that students sit in their subject at the end of their junior cycle will also be graded differently. Instead of A,B,C,D,E,F and NG the following descriptors will now be used:

Distinction 90 to 100%

Higher Merit 75 to 89%

Merit 55 to 74%

Achieved 40 to 54%

Partially Achieved 20 to 39%

(not graded) 0 to 19%.

Classroom Based Assessments

Classroom Based Assessments (CBAs) provide students with opportunities to demonstrate their learning and skills in ways not possible in a pen and paper examination, for example, their verbal communication and investigation skills. CBAs will be undertaken in subjects and short courses and will be facilitated by the classroom teacher. CBAs will be undertaken during a defined time period within normal class contact time and to a national timetable. Students will complete one CBA in second year and one in third year in most subjects. CBAs will be reported on in the JCPA using the following descriptors:

  • Exceptional
  • Above Expectation
  • In Line with Expectation
  • Yet to Meet Expectation

Once the second Classroom-Based Assessment (CBA) is completed, students in third year will complete a written Assessment Task on what they have learned and the skills and competences that they have developed in that assessment. This task, set by the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NCCA), is undertaken during normal class time and will be sent to the State Examinations Commission (SEC) for marking. This Assessment Task will account for 10% of the overall mark for the final examination. Specific arrangements are made for Visual Art, Music, Home Economics and the Technology subjects. At the end of third year, students will sit the final SEC examination in June, which will account for 90% of the SEC grade.

Short Courses

A short course is designed for approximately 100 hours of student engagement across two or three years of the junior cycle. Clonaslee College will provide short courses in PE, SPHE and CSPE (Well Being) for incoming 1st years in 2019-2020.

Other Learning Experiences

Students will have the opportunity to engage with a range of other learning experiences in Clonaslee College and these can be recorded on the JCPA. Other learning experiences play a critical role in ensuring that students are provided with a broad and balanced educational experience. These learning experiences could include student engagement in a science fair, a musical performance or a debating competition. They could also include extracurricular activities, such as membership of the school student council or school clubs and societies as well as participation in school sporting activities.These achievements will be reported home at the end of each year to promote the emotional well being of the student and enhance their self-esteem.In Clonaslee College we have a vibrant extra-curricular programme and a range of other opportunities in school to ensure students experience a broad range of learning experiences.

Student Wellbeing

Your child’s well being is of central importance to his/her educational success and overall happiness. Wellbeing will become a core part of your child’s junior cycle experience. This area of learning includes, amongst others, Physical Education (PE), Civic, Social and Political Education (CSPE), Social, Personal and Health Education (SPHE) [including Relationship and Sexuality Education (RSE)] and Guidance.

Reporting in Junior Cycle

A new reporting structure at junior cycle will contribute to the personal and educational development of students. It will support and underpin ongoing learning and assessment. Clonaslee College will regularly provide information to parents about their child’s achievement and progress through parent teacher student meetings, effective feedback from teachers and reports home to parents. We will also support students in their learning by suggesting next steps and providing feedback to help students’ self-reflection. The reporting process at junior cycle will culminate in the award of the JCPA to students.

explain how Assessment now helps learning rather than simply end product!

How has Assessment changed?

Click on line above to watch a VIDEO

to explain how Assessment now helps learning rather than simply being an end product!

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CAT4

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Clonaslee College,
Clonaslee,
Co. Laois,
R32R972,
Ireland

057 864 8044


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