This is a performance measure (for schools as opposed to pupils) that measures progress between KS2 and KS4. It is based on how students progress within three ‘buckets’. Bucket one holds English Lit or Lang and Maths (these count double – so progress eight is really progress 10). Bucket two is the EBacc bucket and has three slots made up of Science, History, Geography and MFL subjects. Bucket three has three slots which can include all subjects not counted in buckets one and two. It is worked out by adding the ‘score’ a student gets in each subject that counts and dividing by ten. Remember that bucket one counts double. Averages are worked out from this and schools doing well in this measure score zero and above. Scores of below -0.5 are considered to be below floor targets.
Why is our Progress 8 score low (-0.28) when our attainment score was good (61% 5 A* – C including English and Maths)?
The biggest factor in this is the fact that Progress 8 was announced as a performance measure for schools after last year’s Year 11 had taken their options. Consequently, a large number of them (65/171) did not have the correct combination of subjects to fill all three slots in bucket two (too many did not take History, Geography or a MFL). The school had a choice when progress 8 was announced as a performance measure: to take a hit on this measure or to make the students re-take their options.
What if our students had taken the right combination of subjects?
If we replace where a student has a score of zero (for not filling a bucket slot) with an average grade for that student (across all their subjects) then our result changes thus: All Students: -0.28 goes to -0.08.