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Tudor CEVC Primary School. Parents’ Forum – March 2014 How do we best organise the children into classes in the academic year 2014/15?. Considerations. We have a Pupil Admission Number (PAN) of 45 This means that there will have to be at least some mixed age classes

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tudor cevc primary school

Tudor CEVC Primary School

Parents’ Forum – March 2014

How do we best organise the children into classes in the academic year 2014/15?

considerations
Considerations
  • We have a Pupil Admission Number (PAN) of 45
  • This means that there will have to be at least some mixed age classes
  • Currently there are no year groups with 45 children in thembut theoretically there could be
  • Many schools teach mixed age classes as successfully as single age classes
  • Theoretically Year 2 and Year 6 are doing different curriculums than the rest of the school next year
  • Ideally whatever we establish should be sustainable
  • EYFS would remain as one single unit
options
Options
  • Option 1 – we stay as we are
  • Option 2 – we organise the classes into age groups
  • Option 3 – we organise the classes into ability groups
  • Option 4 – we develop an intervention group
option 1 we stay as we are
Option 1 – we stay as we are

This means:

  • Two Foundation classes
  • Three mixed classes in Key Stage 1
  • Three mixed classes in Lower Key Stage 2
  • Three mixed ages classes in Upper Key Stage 2

(currently, we have separate Year 5 and 6 classes and a mixed group in the middle in Upper Key Stage 2 but they are smaller year groups)

advantages
Advantages
  • It’s the most equitable system
  • It allows teachers to plan together
  • Children will be more able to select a friend or two to be in the class with them
disadvantages
Disadvantages
  • There can be a danger of pitching to the middle – not enough challenge for the most able; not enough scaffolding for those that need support – this can be especially true in maths
  • A wide age range and wider levels of maturity
  • Different curriculums with different expectations in Years 1 and 2 and Years 5 and 6.
option 2 we organise the classes in age groups
Option 2 – we organise the classes in age groups

This would mean fewer mixed age classes.

Across two year groups, the classes would be organised by age. The oldest would make a one single age class; as would the youngest. There would then be a much smaller mixed age class in the middle. These children whilst in different years would only be about six months different in age.

advantages1
Advantages
  • There would be fewer mixed age classes with therefore a narrower achievement and attainment group in each
  • The curriculum could be more tailored
  • The smaller group in the middle, whilst mixed age, would get more individual support from being in a small group
  • This is what the majority of mixed age PAN schools do
  • Children would only be in mixed age class for one year at a time
disadvantages1
Disadvantages
  • The mix of children might need to be carefully considered
  • There would be greatly reduced , if any, scope for children to choose their friends to be with
  • Could be considered less fair
  • Transition from EYFS into Key Stage 1 for some of our youngest children could be challenging
option 3 we organise the children into ability groups
Option 3 – we organise the children into ability groups

In this option, we would see the three parts of the school (Key Stage 1/Lower Key Stage 2/Upper Key Stage 2) organised in to three streams or sets according to the children’s abilities. The more able the group the larger the group would be.

advantages2
Advantages
  • Theoretically a much narrower ability range in classes
  • Work could be more directly targeted
  • Support could be intensified in the groups where it is most needed
disadvantages2
Disadvantages
  • Less flexibility for movement between classes
  • It would be difficult to organise children who were, for example, excellent at maths and needed support in Literacy
  • These groups may not include friendships
  • The most able also need support
  • Three classes doesn’t really narrower the ability range that much
  • Self-esteem issues
option 4 we develop an intervention group
Option 4 – we develop an intervention group

This model currently runs in Upper Key Stage 2. There are two single age classes of Year 5 and 6 and a small group of 16 in the middle who need a greater level of personal intervention.

advantages3
Advantages
  • More single age classes
  • Easier curricular teaching
  • Evidence shows that the model is beginning to work in our upper Key Stage 2 classes
disadvantages3
Disadvantages
  • Flexibility of movement between groups could be hampered
  • Danger of creating a “sink” group where expectations are too low
  • Damaging to self-esteem
  • Permanence of these groups
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