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Approach to Assessment at Mayfield School

Following government guidance schools were not required to submit formal assessments of End of Key Stage Data across 2019-2020 and 2020-2021 academic years.

At Mayfield School we are proud of all of our children and the outstanding progress they make across all aspects of their learning and development.As a specialist school, we provide a broad and balanced education that caters for the needs of all of our pupils in a holistic manner using our philosophy ‘One size fits one.’ 

The curriculum is at the heart of our provision and each pupils’ access points are individual. Careful assessment indicates what each student’s individual curriculum provision will look like. This approach determines which aspects of progress we assess for each student. This is, as always, relative to their age, prior attainment and cognitive range.

In addition to the End of Stage Statutory assessments required of all schools  we also personalise progress each year for every pupil in relation to Tapestry our online assessment system linked to our thematic curriculum and areas of need based on their EHCP's. 

Over the last 3 years alongside the assessment of academic progress we have introduced and developed a number of additional assessments linked to the interventions used in school. Traditionally these more bespoke methods reflect the aspects of progress which are harder to quantify, but are valued most highly by staff and parents. 

Principles of Assessment

The overriding principle of good assessment is that it should be clearly tied to its intended purpose which should be to inform classroom teaching practice and ensure that teaching effectively meets the needs of all of our pupils.  We consider Three main forms of assessment:  Day to day assessment, summative assessment and statutory assessment.

Day to Day Formative Assessment :

Evidence of this can be found on Tapestry in lessons  and in discussion with staff.

Areas of Learning linked to Areas of Learning ( linked to National Curriculum)

Teachers continually assess against differentiated targets which informs their planning on a daily basis and may include;

  • Questioning pupils during class using a total communication approach (e.g. signs, symbols and speech)
  • Evaluation of work on Tapestry with next steps considered
  • Observations of learning

Interventions ( also see section on Curriculum Enhancement) SUMMATIVE ASSESSMENT 

Learning outcomes are identified and addressed in timetables sessions. Where appropriate, targets will be developed in conjunction with staff from our multi- disciplinary team.

  • Rebound Therapy
  • Physical Development
  • Hydrotherapy
  • MOVE
  • Thrive
  • Talk Tools

Cherry Garden Assessment Framework: SUMMATIVE ASSESSMENT

Following research into different assessment frameworks we are now using the above framework from 2021 as our MAIN ASSESSMENT 

Assessment frameworks are an important part of tracking progress. We have found that traditional assessment systems based on linear progress analysis do not suit the learning profiles of most of our pupils.More often than not we have to drill down to an individual level as the vast majority of our student population have ‘spikey’ profiles and as such patterns and trends within small cohorts are not meaningful to allow wider comparisons.

The Cherry Garden Framework allows pupil achievement to be assessed in a broader, more holistic way in order to truly celebrate the breadth of their experience and the range of their skills. All students are now assessed using the assessment tool - based upon original national P scale guidance broken down into smaller steps to allow comparisons to be made. The information is web based and generates expected progress targets based upon data inputs by schools.

It is a bespoke assessment package for children with SEN and complex needs. Cherry Garden Branch Maps are based on years of SEN teaching experience and are targeted mainly at children who are working below Year 1 expectations.The unique, child centred framework for students working at a level expected for typically developing children aged 0-5, with additional bridging branch maps 11 and 12 in key areas for the small number operating at a level expected in Year 1.

 We use Cherry Levels for all pupils up to year 11 to record small steps progress across aspects of the National Curriculum.

  • For pupils in the Early Years Foundation Stage this will be against the strands of Development Matters.
  • For pupils in primary and secondary this will be against the National Curriculum for English and Maths,

The information is then evaluated and analysed to look for trends or patterns to show positive progress and results that may raise questions requiring more in depth analysis ; resulting in actions required. In conjunction with Tapestry our assessment package for SEND children is available online through an Online Learning Journal. Through the Tapestry app, teaching staff and parents and carers can share photo and video observations of learning and a unique visualisation can be shown. It will allow you to document their learning and share it with parents in a quick, easy, and engaging way.

Have a look at this article which tells you more about the approach.


Annual Reviews of the EHCP: SUMMATIVE  ASSESSMENT 

Key areas of learning are identified with specific but broad outcomes across the four areas of SEND. We also include independence and self help as one of our core areas of learning.Each area is broken down into annual targets which are taught throughout the year across all aspects of the school day. These targets are also written to support generalisation at home and in the community.

These are further broken down into termly individual education plan targets which are quality assured in pupil progress meetings and feed into the final summary of percentage of annual targets achieved.Across school individual education plan targets linked to Annual Review targets are tracked and achievements collated to support middle leaders across each area of learning demonstrate appropriate challenge for all.

Nationally Standardised Summative Assessment – STATUTORY ASSESSMENT 

The Department for Education specifies statutory assessment requirements which schools are required to comply with. This includes:

  • The Year 1 Phonics Check
  • National Curriculum assessment at the end of Key Stages 1 (year 2) and 2 (year 6)

in aspects of Reading, Writing, Maths and Science.

All our pupils are working below age-related expectations so we do not currently register them to sit the tests. Teacher assessment is therefore used for statutory assessment at the end of Key Stages 1 and 2 and pupil progress will be shared with parents and carers through the annual reports. 

Reporting for 2022

Pupils in EYFS:

Pupils will be assessed against the EYFS profile.

Data will also be recorded on progress against indiviudal education plan outcomes 

Pupils at End of Key Stage 1:

Staff will report on progress against pre – key stage standards for pupils engaged in subject specific learning.

Pupils working at the old P1- 4 levels will be assessed against the Engagement scale but specific scores will not be required.

Data will also be recorded on progress against Individual Education Plan outcomes and cherry levels via Tapestry

Pupils at End of Key Stage 2:

Staff will report on progress against pre – key stage standards for pupils engaged in subject specific learning.

The number of Pupils working at the against the Engagement scale within cherry levels will be reported, but specific scores will not be required. 

Data will also be recorded on progress against Individual Education Plan outcomes and cherry levels via Tapestry

Pupils at End of Key Stage 3:

Internal progress data in relation to cherry levels.

Data will also be recorded on progress against Individual Education Plan outcomes and cherry levels via Tapestry

Pupils at End of Key Stage 4:

Report on ASDAN units achieved.

Data will also be recorded on progress against Individual Education Plan outcomes and cherry levels via Tapestry

Pupils at End of Key Stage 5:

Report on destinations.

Report on ASDAN units achieved.

Data will also be recorded on progress against Individual Education Plan outcomes 


At Mayfield, ongoing assessment is an essential and important part of the Early Years for children’s’ learning and development. This involves staff observing children in a variety of contexts to gain an understanding of each child’s level of understanding and record progress. This happens throughout any taught session as well as during free exploration times when children are embedding and extending any previous learning. These observations and assessments will then be used to shape and alter any future learning and identify areas that need some extra focus and support.

Observations are made using Tapestry, which allows us to observe, take photos and make notes while working with the children. This allows us to build up a picture in a variety of opportunities and areas and comment on what we feel are the next steps for the children which then feeds directly into EHCP and IEP targets. We are then able to share these experiences with the children’s parents instantly, by uploading the observation to the children’s learning journey. Within the first 6 weeks that a child starts reception, staff will administer the statutory Reception Baseline Assessment (RBA).

At the end of the EYFS, the teacher completes the statutory EYFS profile for each child. Pupils are assessed against the 17 early learning goals, indicating whether they are emerging or meeting expected levels of development. The profile reflects ongoing observations, and discussions with parents and/or carers. The profile is moderated internally (referring to the Development Matters guidance) and in partnership with other local schools, to ensure consistent assessment judgements. EYFS profile data is submitted to the local authority.


Mayfield College :

The students in College follow a bespoke curriculum, based around the Four Adult Pathways (Friends, Relationships and the Community; Good Health; Independent Living & Housing and Employment) and individual EHCP targets. Teaching staff use day to day formative assessment of the Learning Outcomes of ASDAN Lifeskills Challenges. The Lifeskills Challenges provide a flexible way to recognise and reward small steps of achievement for learners working from pre-Entry to Entry Level 3.

All assessments are supported by annotated photographic and/ or video evidence that is uploaded on to the online platform Evidence for Learning. All assessments are moderated internally by the College Team and externally by ASDAN before students are accredited with the relevant ASDAN qualifications.  

Developments across 2022 JAM targets - Just About Me.

From Summer 2022 we are introducing a more detailed document to  set targets and assess progress linked to our thematic curriculum. This will form part of a longer term Key Stage Tracker linked to these areas. This approach will capture a wider range of targets than the current IEP system based on EHCP areas of need.





Contact Us

Mayfield Special School
Gloucester Road,
Chorley, PR7 3HN