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Published on 12th July 2017
This letter is to clarify the decision made for the class arrangements in mathematics for your child going into year 8.
After an evaluation and review, the senior leadership team and mathematics faculty have taken the decision to continue with mixed attainment classes through into year 8. Next year there will be 5 mixed attainment classes which means the class sizes will be smaller than this year.
This decision has not been taken lightly and reflects the research and empirical evidence collected and presented this year. We have a strong moral imperative here at the Fernwood School and in the mathematics department when it comes to ‘High achievement with care and discipline for all’. It is our duty as practitioners to allow all students to access the more challenging work, including the reasoning and problem solving material and not pre-judge students’ abilities based on prior attainment.
Your child will continue to be stretched in a mixed attainment environment, with support available where necessary. Some students will also receive support outside of lesson times and students should be encouraged to access the ‘challenge’ work both in lessons and from the ‘challenge wall’.
As a school we will continue to monitor the progress of all students and regularly review the impact of mixed attainment. Students at the Fernwood School begin their GCSE (AQA 8300) in year 9, thus consideration of tier of entry will take place at the end of year 8.
As a parent/carer we hope you will continue to support the school in our decision and encourage your child do try their very best in mathematics. Our dedicated team is passionate about sharing the great mathematical principles that underpin the world around us, not just at a superficial level because ‘we have to’, but because we want all children to aspire to love mathematics and become efficient mathematicians, to not just accept learning methods, but to understand why they work; this understanding is the foundation to great achievement in this subject.
Mr. Crandley – Faculty Leader
Miss. McCance – Deputy Faculty Leader