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ICT KS3 SATS Tests Thread, KS3 ICT Pilot in United Kingdom (UK) Specific Forums; Yep ... gotta agree with you here ... that is why it is important to make sure that it is ...
  1. #16

    GrumbleDook's Avatar
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    Re: KS3 ICT Pilot

    Yep ... gotta agree with you here ... that is why it is important to make sure that it is up and ready in time for the teachers to get the students trying the sample tests and seeing how far they can push it.

  2. #17

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    Re: KS3 ICT Pilot

    Quote Originally Posted by GrumbleDook
    @RoyG: Nope ... this one is here to stay, and it will probably be expanded to include other subjects too.
    God help us! As someone who'se spent the last 30 odd years persuading kids to have some sort of individuality, creativity & imagination, rather than being able to jump through pointless hoops - I can only say, if you're right, the future's more depressing than I could imagine!

    Quote Originally Posted by GrumbleDook
    There is an NDA attached to the pilot which RM/QCA have not decided to enforce yet this year ... but they have in the past.
    What the f***'s an NDA?

    Quote Originally Posted by GrumbleDook
    The test itself is not too bad ... most students I have seen in other schools struggle because it "'snot like what we are used to!" and so they hate it ...
    Not the point - there will be schools where they'll train kids on this piece of cr*p, who'll get better results, and those who'll not bother wasting the kids' time, who may get worse results. I can only hope there will be a significant number in the latter category, who'll carry on trying to give the kids a more meaningful IT experience.

    Quote Originally Posted by GrumbleDook
    At this point we can moan about teachers not making sure students have transferable skills so that the students are able to adapt, or we just accept that RM/QCA could not make it an exact mirror of M$ Office due to legal reasons and be happy that they haven't either ....
    Most kids will be able to "transfer skills" - they seem to cope pretty well with the latest generation of mobile phones, mp3 players, PSPs etc. etc. - but why test them on this in such a prescriptive, pointless exercise?

    Quote Originally Posted by GrumbleDook
    Then we whinge about it not working on anything other than CC3 or plain vanilla 2K3 domains ... get into a sulk for those using Macs / Linux / thin client / Citrix ... and then accept that we have to make it work and that the most we can do is see how bad it is and try and give feedback to RM/QCA so that they actually change things so it actually works.
    Who's whinging??!! The longer they take to make this cr*p work on my Netware system, the better!! I shan't be busting a gut to solve their problems!

    Quote Originally Posted by GrumbleDook
    I am having a serious feeling of Deja Vu from last year at this point and point out that it *is* getting better ... that there are schools doing alpha testing for Mac, etc ... and just hope that we can get it sorted in time for the compulsory testing in 2009 (presuming it suffers from "wembley" syndrome and runs late.
    1. I shan't be volunteering for the Netware alpha test!
    2. 2009 is after my retirement date! Hallelujah!
    3. Odds on for the "Wembley syndrome" methinks!

    Rant over!

    RoyG

  3. #18

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    Re: KS3 ICT Pilot

    Remember:

    If you have to change the IP address range you must include localhost in the new list!!!! Took me ages before I realised I`d not done so which was why I couldn`t log on to the APS anymore.

    Apart from my stupidity though, it seems to work quite well but I have to admit it hasn`t been stressed yet.........lets see what happens when a whole room full of kids tries to mis-use it at the same time.

    BTW Do you have to have a pilots licence to use the FlightDeck??
    Can I persuade SMT that they should purchase a good FlightSim for training purposes?
    Is it time for my medication already?

  4. #19

    TechMonkey's Avatar
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    Re: KS3 ICT Pilot

    We had a big talk about this at county level with all the Network techs and in the end the advice was for everyone to please take part and go as far as possible, even if we failed and we knew we would fail. That way the statistics would show there was a problem. If only those that can run it enter and a few failed then the result will be that 95% were succesful so hurrah lets plough on regardless. But if everyone tries and it shows all those that can't then the result will be much more meaningful.
    The other problem with holding back is that the teachers won't be prepared, the kids will be unprepared so you are in effect causing the bad results. Which even if you have retired sin't a nice legacy to leave.

    NDA = non disclosure agreement

  5. #20

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    Re: KS3 ICT Pilot

    Quote Originally Posted by TechMonkey
    The other problem with holding back is that the teachers won't be prepared, the kids will be unprepared so you are in effect causing the bad results. Which even if you have retired sin't a nice legacy to leave.
    My main point is that the results of a test like this are meaningless. The only reason anyone will be interested in the results is the effect it might have on the school's League Table & Value-Added scores - as a measure of kids real ability in ICT it's pretty much a waste of time for all concerned and a waste of millions of tax-payers' money!)

    RoyG

  6. #21

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    Re: KS3 ICT Pilot

    All of the key stage testing is for the benefit of schools, LEA, and Government, not the students. My issues with the online test is the same as any other KS test; valuable teaching time has to be devoted to learning how to pass the tests instead of learning the subject. Kids who cannot master the test desktop environment will never realise their true ICT KS3 potential.

    However, there is still hope; I heard an amusing story regarding KS3 tests (not ICT) recently. A teacher was urging the students in his class to work hard and prepare for the tests, until one student chirped up "These tests are for your benefit not ours. If we screw up the tests, so what? Except you get into trouble..... so be nice to us or else..."

    Brian

  7. #22

    GrumbleDook's Avatar
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    Re: KS3 ICT Pilot

    oh how I wish the above was true ...

    The sets that students go into for taking KS4 exams depends on their teacher's ability to ascertain their ability.

    This used to be done by end of year test and guesswork ... now schools have the KS3 results to fall back on and if a student buggers it all up it means they may be in a lower set and not reach their maximum grade in their KS4 exams, and in some case they might be dropped from a subject altoghter, reducing their prospects later on in life.

    Making sure the students understand this for any of the KS3 NC testing is important ...

    I know that one test should not make all the difference, but we all know schools that will turn round and say under their breath, "the stupid idiot shouldn't have buggered about then ... tough luck", and a number of employers would say "spot on" to this, because they don't want someone working for them who will intentionally sabatoge things just to force their own way ...

    If we had that then the unions would do it all the time ... erm ... I'll get my coat.

  8. #23

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    Re: KS3 ICT Pilot

    I have spoken to a lot of teachers over the years, & most of them know how well students are doing without relying upon Sats. They do however get very frustrated at how much time they have to devote to making sure that their Sats results look good, so much so that they end up 'tailoring' their lesson content to fit.
    Even Ofsted recently remarked that schools were worrying too much about their league table position and some schools were 'even' tailoring their curriculum to assist in maintaining/improving their league table position!

    Subject leaders I have spoken to will often admit their concerns about the quality of data & the level of coaching that goes on; for example I know of one primary school where KS2 science results showed all their students were significantly above average. By the time they had sat KS3 science half of them were below average. Now, is that the secondary school science dept 'failing' the kids, or were they particularly well coached at KS2?

    I wonder, how many schools will use the online ICT KS3 data to determine setting entry to KS4?

  9. #24
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    Re: KS3 ICT Pilot

    Yesterday I installed the APS no problem. Logged on to the APS website and sent the registration.

    Logged on again this morning to check it, still waiting (no problem as it was less than 12 hours since sending). Tried again a couple of hours later. I got something like "there's a problem with the CPS server".

    Tried again at lunchtime - logged on OK, still waiting.

    Just tried again (almost 24 hours since sending) and got "Error: Your School Registration Information is corrupted. "

    This does not look good! :x


    EDIT: Found the answer in the RM support page. Give tomcat write permission to the drive root.

  10. #25

    webman's Avatar
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    Re: KS3 ICT Pilot

    @OverWorked: You're at about the same state we're at, APS and nothing else yet

  11. #26
    browolf's Avatar
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    Re: KS3 ICT Pilot

    this program is soo gonna destroy networks, group policies, etc etc

  12. #27
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    Re: KS3 ICT Pilot

    I have been responsible for setting this up at our place. It has been pretty much hell! It seems that the postmaster password keeps getting corrupted for what seems like no reason on a fairly regular basis. RM say "it is a known issue".

    Oh right thanks.....

    Pete

    PS Thats just the start of the issues.

  13. #28

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    Re: KS3 ICT Pilot

    @overworked: "EDIT: Found the answer in the RM support page. Give tomcat write permission to the drive root."

    Keep an eye on tomcat, and more especially postmaster. once I'd got past the registration part of the setup I had several problems not being able to log on to the APS. Discovered with the help of people here and RM that postmaster had stopped running. You then have to stop tomcat and restart postmaster followed by tomcat. always in that order. do this from cmd net stop "postmaster" (same for "tomcat") then net start "postmaster" (same again for "tomcat")
    good luck
    beeswax

  14. #29

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    Re: KS3 ICT Pilot

    The problem I am having is the import of student details ...

    I have created the file as per instructions ... only to find the export from SIMS (using the PLASC information) is not liked by the APS.

    It started with SEN ... they wanted the code and each field must be filled ... so the original answer was to but Y or N in ... except that this is wrong ... and so we find the proper codes.

    First Language ... we have it as the word ... instead it must be a code, and that means ENG for English, OTH for other ... and so on ... and it seems that the only language that is important is English.

    I then had to shuffle the order of the columns around ... subject and registration groups, first language and postcode.

    and then it doesn't import the teaching sets and ILAs ...

    I am not getting frustrated by this ... honest.

    I haven't even rolled out the DPS yet ... and this is for Monday for evaluation by staff.

  15. #30

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    Re: KS3 ICT Pilot

    That's easy...(been there, got the t-shirt...)

    You need PLASC 05 format data , not 06. I hit this problem too. There is a utility (download from QCA site) to convert the PLASC file. If you go to the support site and search for PLASC2006Conversion.zip then you will find the answer.

    Brian

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