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MIS Systems Thread, Target Setting in Technical; Hi Pretty common issue I'm sure but as a school we are looking towards using adjusted targets based on FFT ...
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    saulhudson's Avatar
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    Target Setting


    Pretty common issue I'm sure but as a school we are looking towards using adjusted targets based on FFT and not just raw FFT data for KS4 students. We have tried several times in the past to gather adjusted data from teachers but the process has always failed and we have ultimately gone back to using raw FFT data as a target.

    I wonder what other schools do and how they gather data. Do you provide FFT to teachers and get them to adjust the figures. Do you do all subjects or just subjects like Music, PE Media studies etc that FFT might struggle with? Do you provide teaching group print outs to staff that that review departmently or approval within leadership etc or do you let teachers just alter freely? Do you allow targets to be adjusted downwards as well as upwards?

    Furthermore how do you then do analysis on the adjusted data?

    As a school we use FFT heavily and do lot of analysis against what it says vs what our teachers say and what the students actuallys get in there GCSE's for example. We compare all the usual things % A*-C vs what FFT predicted for the subject and then headline figures for the school % 5 A*-C's inc EM, what FFT said for the student vs what they got etc etc.

    I can see us running into a lot of problems with adjusted targets as we will still have some requirement for analysis vs raw FFT and also then analysis against adjusted targets. Also is there any worth in reviewing the adjustment setting and how do you compare this against what FFT said in the first place.

    Obviously CMIS doesn't let you manually adjust the FFT data on the assessment view which is fair enough so the data would have to be loaded into your assessment model which is fine for ePortal and using progress tracker etc but we do so much analysis outside of CMIS reporting and ePortal.

    I'm also worried about confusing staff by having 2 sets of targets and in various palces (ePortal, CMIS reports etc) they'll see the RAW FFT and in the assessment / progress tracker it will be the adjusted target. Confusing staff can quickly lead to them not using the system as intended in my experience.

    Really I just wonder how other school handle target setting, how data is gather and sorted and finally how analysis is done at all the assessment entry points and vs the actual results.

    Thanks for reading

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    Target setting


    Not really answering the original question, but... In my experience, it is best to give one clear target.
    I can understand why you would want to compare afterwards, but it's absolutely imperitive that the teacher and the student (and the parent for that matter) can only see one, they are only aware of one, etc.

    Everyone needs something to work towards which needs to be very clear and definative.
    And if in doubt, go with the higher grade. The problem we always had was to motivate a student give them a high (achievable) target. The trouble with this is that the departments and staff then dont meet their numbers if the students don't meet actually achieve their targets.
    To me, that's tough, a school isn't there for the teachers it's there for the students. The staff should see it as a target too - and if you are constantly setting high targets in order to motivate people, this should be taken into account when analysing results.

    Figure out where you're going to have your targets. Then hide any other form of target the absolute best you can. Only give permission to view it to the people doing the analysis, as those people will understand the difference.

    Techy at Serco

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    GrumbleDook's Avatar
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    A typical process can run like this.

    Raw FFT data comes into the school with the prediction range for each kid at each subject (talking KS4 really). This is passed over to the HoD who will then ask each subject teacher to check against what they already have in mind for the target grade for the student and the HoD watches for any trends such as majority of a class being moved down or up a grade (a variety of reasons for this ... the teacher does not know the kids well enough, the teacher is being pessimistic so that when the grades come in at FFT or higher it can make them / the department look better, the teacher is trying to show that the kids are working better than they are .... there are *lots* of reasons!) and the HoD will then ask the teacher to justify the change. It is down to trust and as the HoD gets more experience of measuring their department it gets more accurate. This is then fed back to SLT who will also double check to see if they can spot any whole school trends. It is also common during this for the form tutor to grab a copy to see if one of their students is consistently being moved down / up ...

    The reality of how this data is moved around varies from school to school. Some use the MIS, others use spreadsheets, others use bits of paper with someone centrally (admin task) putting it back on a system somewhere.

    Here is an example though using SIMS.

    You import your FFT data onto SIMS. If you consider an existing marksheets and data you have already got and presume that teachers have a marksheet where they can see the FFT prediction and also enter *their* version next to it. The HoD might then have a marksheet which pulls the FFT, the teacher prediction and the progress grades of the student ... and with a bit of use of conditional formula can see where the changes are at a glance ... plain for a matched target, orange for one grade below, red for two or more grades below, green for one grade above and blue for two or more grades above.

    All the data is in there and it is just a case of mangling it together and pushing out the marksheets to the relevant people to see.

    There are better people to explain it than me on here but the above sets out a basic idea of it all. YMMV. Trust is a big issue. Where possible make it as simple as you can for the HoD to view and understand the data in a meaningful manner ... the less time they have to spend getting stuff into Excel and creating pivot tables the more time they have to do trend analysis and making sure target setting works.

    It is also really a policy decision on the school about whether they share the FFT data with the student or parent. Technically a parent (or student over 12) can request to see the FFT data so there is little point hiding it ... and it helps the school to try and understand *why* there may be differences between FFT and the real world.

    An example would be a student who comes into the school but has low predictions for french (based on KS2 SATS) but in reality is a fluent speaker due to their parents being french and spending most of her holidays over there. Similar can happen with Arts subjects ... and it can lead to some *interesting* parents' evenings!!!

    In reality ... SSAT and ASCL run some fantastic courses about data and how to make use if it in the school, Capita and Serco have a number of good examples about how to get it up and running, and NCSL courses (Leading from the Middle and NPQH) cover this as well.

  4. Thanks to GrumbleDook from:

    vikpaw (11th October 2009)

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    vikpaw's Avatar
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    I agree with Grumbledook especially about monitoring the changes that teachers make. It was with special permission that a grade could be lowered compared to FFT.

    To expand a little more I used SIMS at a previous school.

    We imported FFT data for each subject and set up a marksheet to hold the FFT data and our own aspect to store the target grade. The website shows the match between their broad categories and the subject they think it should cover but you can adapt to your needs. Sometimes we'd average certain predictions if we thought it was better for us.

    I think we then had a policy to add 1 to the FFT grade and make that the target, but initially the FFT data was copied into our own target column.

    The teachers, HoDs etc then saw class based and year based marksheets with FFT as a read only column and the adjusted marksheet. Regular internal analysis was against the adjusted target with the FFT data there comparison and some official purposes. They can print them out if they want or use them live, export to excel for their own purposes etc. Form tutors also had their own view.

    It takes some setting up but once the templates are all there it's fairly trivial to keep reusing year after year.

    Parents never saw the FFT data, but reports were generated termly (6!) per year group, with the adjusted target and interim measurements.

    In terms of confusion once the adjusted target is created the only people that might look at the FFT original data was management and OFSTED perhaps HoDs too, usually analysis was done for them.

    Hope that helps.
    any questions, feel free to holler.

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    saulhudson's Avatar
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    Thanks all for your responses interestingt reading. I think as this is the first year we will have some issues but looking at what people have posted on here it is maybe not that bad. We have sent out sheets to each teaching groups and we'll get changes back so I guess I'll load the assessment model with FFTD and then manually adjust the grade myself. Not a quick thing but once its done it is done.

    Any more ideas would be great as its nice to get ideas from other schools.

    Many thanks

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