I recently asked the teachers to do unit tests with their students. We analyse the results not just by student, but by question too. That way we can see which topics/questions the students struggle with, and re-teach them. This ideas is taken from Leverage Leadership – an excellent book for anyone interested in school improvement.
This idea of teach, test, re-teach, re-test is very new to the teachers. Up till now they have simply asked themselves, ‘Have I taught the topic?’ but we are saying they need to ask, ‘Have my students learned the topic?’ This has totally different implications, including the fact that you need proof for your answer, and if it is ‘no’ you need to re-teach.
Anyway, in our first Class 10 unit test in science the students got quite poor marks. For example, you may be able to see in the first photo, for Question 1c and 2c only 10% of student answers were right (NB not 10% of students – 10% of their answers). However, our science teacher took the initiative to re-teach and re-test and the results were significantly better. For these two questions, 86% and 55% of the answers were correct, respectively (see second pic).
This gives us some cause for optimism, since the secret to SLC success is basically; teach, test, re-teach, re-test.