More able students
The Boswells School makes every effort to enable and encourage all students to reach a level in every subject which is commensurate with their ability by providing a relevant and differentiated curriculum. Some of our highest ability students are invited to take part in additional activities across the curriculum designed to stretch and challenge them to allow them to achieve their highest potential.
The school define the terms ‘More’ and ‘Most Able’ as:
A student who “has the capacity for” or “demonstrates” high levels of performance in one or a range of academic subjects.
A student with a specific ability (generally in a non-academic area).
A student that meets certain data benchmarks.
To ensure that all students make the most of the learning opportunities available to them their academic and personal development is monitored closely; progress is checked and appropriate targets are set. Our expectations are high and we take great pride in providing for students of all abilities and in enabling them to succeed.
Expert staffing, partnership with parents, links with higher education and our wider community all underpin the outstanding provision and personalised approach for every student.
Identification of More and Most Able Students
The ‘Most Able’ students at The Boswells School are those that join us in Year 7 with average KS2 a scaled Key Stage 2 score of 110 or higher.
By having achieved a GCSE average score of 7.3 or higher
These students can be identified using a variety of methods. It could involve elements of the following:
- Assessment results
- Teacher nomination
As far as Assessment results are concerned, baseline data offers a useful starting point to identify More and Most Able students in the form of:
- Key Stage 2 English and Mathematics Results
- Cognitive Ability Tests (especially non-verbal)
How do we Stretch and Challenge pupils within lessons?
We ensure that all teachers take the following into consideration when planning:
- Information from primary schools
- Prior performance eg KS2 results
- Particular aptitude in a subject
At The Boswells School we aim to stretch our Most Able in every lesson.
Important strategies include
varied and flexible grouping within a class;
provision of opportunities for more able students to work with students of similar ability,
- which will mean that it is sometimes appropriate for students to work with older
- mentoring and additional provision for students of exceptional ability;
- the provision of enrichment/extension activities and tasks;
- differentiation within subject areas;
- setting clear and challenging targets;
- asking higher-order questions which encourage investigation and enquiry;
- teaching thinking skills in a subject context, e.g. problem-solving, decision-making;
- facilitation of independent learning by allowing students to organise their own work in their own way, to carry out tasks unaided using their own strategies, to evaluate their work and become self-critical.
In Year 9 and 10, some of our more able students are invited to join ‘The Brilliant Club’ initiative. This programme offers students the opportunity to work directly with a PHD student over a number of months on a particular topic of interest. The process results in a high level, university-assessed dissertation. Successful students are invited to attend the day at a Russell Group University where they graduate. In May 2016, our first group of students graduated at the University of Cambridge, Gonville & Caius College. We were very proud of them and look forward to more success with our 2019-20 cohort.
Acknowledgement and Celebration
It is important to celebrate and enjoy the achievements of our More and Most Able students. We do this through:
- the school’s reward system
- acknowledgement in assemblies
- the school’s parents’ weekly bulletin, school magazine or local press
- annual Presentation Evening