Performance measures guidance for 2014-2018 (KS4)

Solution

You can find a list of approved EBacc and valid qualifications for inclusion in performance measures in the RaiseOnline Document Library. You can manage the status of all subjects using the Edit Qualifications tool. 

From 2014, subject discounting and first entry rules apply. 4Matrix accounts for this on a year-by-year basis, and the rules for each cohort are different.

In English, Maths and Science, Pathway discount rules also apply. 4Matrix accounts for Pathway Discounting in English, Maths and Science. There is more information on this below.

 

2014

4Matrix supports the 2014 performance measures, in-line with DfE guidelines. In summary, the measures mean that:

  • All subjects carry a maximum weighting of 1

  • Where a pupil studies more than 2 vocational subjects, only the 2 highest grades will be counted in the performance measures

  • If a pupil they studies more than one subject from the same 'family', the highest grade will be used. The lower grade will be excluded. This is managed by a subject's Discount Code. 

  • Only a pupils first entry in a KS4 EBacc qualification will count towards the performance measures, unless the first entry was taken prior to a specific date which can be found in the link below. This applies even if the qualification is subsequently taken with a different exam board.

The DfE Early Entry Guide for Schools can be found in the RaiseOnline link above.

 

2015

The performance measures remain almost the same as in 2014, and further information can be found on RAISEonline in the link above. The main difference is that first entries in any subject will always count over subsequent entries, even if the pupil went on to obtain a higher grade.

A maximum of 3 non-GCSEs will count in Progress 8, and 2 non-GCSEs will count elsewhere (such as 5A*-C etc).

4Matrix does not account for the following rule:

“.. The two non-GCSE qualifications that count are those with the highest points contribution to performance measures, calculated relative to any other GCSE qualifications a pupil has taken..”  This rule can be found in the document at this link. 

The reason for this is that this information was not available prior to results day 2015, and therefore not implemented. We will not be making any further changes to the 2015 calculation engine. We would recommend that any school having issues should remove the results which they feel should have been capped. This would be a rare occurrence as it would require a pupil to be entered for a non-GCSE and GCSE in the same non-EBacc subject area, and also have at least 2 other non-GCSE entries. The GCSE qualification would also only be restored where early entry discounting does not apply. No early entry discounting is to be reversed as part of the capping process.

 

2016

For 2016, there are 4 main performance measures: Progress 8, Attainment 8, EBacc and English and Maths Threshold.

The first entry rules apply to all subjects. Pathway Discounting applies in English, Maths and Science. Where a pupil studies more than 3 vocational subjects, the 3 highest grades will be counted in the performance measures.

Users should note that the only measurement that requires pupils to be entered for both English Language and Literature for this year is EBacc. All other measures, including the redundant levels of progress and 5A-C inc. English do not require entries in both by default in 4Matrix. If pupils are entered for both then their highest English grade is doubled in Progress 8, and the 'spare' grade can be used in the 'Other' basket. There is more information on this below.

Update 3.5.11.0 included a switch in the Admin > Edit Series tool which allows users to make changes to the points outlined above. It is now possible to set the Incl. English and non-GCSE rules to use previous years’ methodology i.e. you can set the 5A* to C/D/G measures to require an entry in both English elements and require an A*-C in Language.

 

2017

The rules remain the same as in 2016, however, for English and Maths, it is only the new 9-1 qualifications that will count in performance measures. Letter-grade qualifications in these subjects that are taken by pupils will not count in performance measures, even if the exams were sat in previous years.

Where a pupil studies more than 3 vocational subjects, the 3 highest grades will be counted in the performance measures.

Users should note that the only measurement that requires pupils to be entered for both English Language and Literature for this year is EBacc. All other measures, including the redundant levels of progress and 5A-C inc. English do not require entries in both. If pupils are entered for both then their highest English grade is doubled in Progress 8, and the 'spare' grade can be used in the 'Other' basket. There is more information on this below.

Update 3.5.11.0 includes a switch in the Admin > Edit Series tool which allows users to make changes to the points outlined above. It is now possible to set the Incl. English and non-GCSE rules to use previous years’ methodology i.e. you can set the 5A* to C/D/G measures to require an entry in both English elements and require an A*-C/9-4 in Language.

 

 

Notes on qualification settings

The last update to include changes to qualification definitions (i.e. whether it's included or not) was update 3.6.0.0, released in October 2016.

Schools can manually change the status for all awards, for each academic year, using Edit Qualifications.

 

Pathway Discounting (also known as Exception Discounting)

There are occasional situations where discount codes alone are not sufficient to achieve accurate discounting. In these circumstances, rules about specific qualifications are applied. More information can be found in the links above but in summary:

Exception discounting applies in the following circumstances:

 

  • AS level use of mathematics and level 3 free standing mathematics qualifications

  • Mathematics and mathematics linked pair

  • English and English language/English literature

  • Science

 

The three circumstances highlighted in bold (Mathematics and mathematics linked pair; English; Science) are accounted for in 4Matrix. 4Matrix does not account for AS/Level 3 Maths Pathway Discounting.

 

How it works in 4Matrix

If you are importing exam results via the SIMS extract tool this will detect the result date and apply discounting rules automatically. Note that it is the 'Exam Season' date that is imported. This means that the date will usually default to the first day of the term in which the exam was taken. If your pupils have taken exams in the same subject/subject family in the same exam season, then users will need to check and amend the result date using Edit Results, as discussed below.

If you are importing results from a spreadsheet, you will need to use Edit Results to set the result date for all relevant grades. See the Edit Results topic for further details on this.

 

Maths

Pupils can either take GCSE mathematics or the linked pair GCSEs in methods in mathematics and application of mathematics. With the early entry rules it is still the case that the higher grade from either the methods in mathematics or applications of  mathematics GCSE counts towards the mathematics component of the school’s performance measures.

The GCSE linked pair qualification discounts against GCSE mathematics. The first qualification that is entered in the mathematics suite of qualifications determines the ‘pathway’ a pupil is following. If a pupil entered for the GCSE methods in mathematics in November 2013 and GCSE Mathematics in June 2014, then the pupil would be on the linked pair pathway and the GCSE mathematics does not count in performance measures. If the pupil did not enter for the GCSE in applications of mathematics then no grade is entered for the mathematics component of the school’s performance measures.

Qualifications in additional mathematics, further mathematics and statistics do not discount against GCSE mathematics or the linked pair GCSEs, and early entry rules will not change this.

To meet the criteria for the mathematics component in headline attainment measures in the performance tables, a C grade needs to be achieved. If the linked pair is taken, the higher grade from either the methods in mathematics or applications of mathematics counts towards the mathematics component.

A C grade or above needs to be achieved in at least one of the linked pair. If a pupil only enters for one of the linked pair, no grade is entered for the mathematics component.

A grade 5 will be classed as a 'good pass' from 2017. This is the grade that will be required in order to meet the Maths element of EBacc and the English and Maths Threshold measure. This is confirmed in the GCSE Reform Guide.

 

English

Pupils can either take English or two qualifications in English language and English literature. The discounting principles work in the same way as mathematics and the linked pair, i.e. if a pupils first entry is in English, they would be on the English pathway, and subsequent qualifications taken in English language/English literature would be discounted, and would not count in the performance tables. If a pupil takes English language/English literature first, a later qualification in English would be discounted.

For 2014 and 2015, where the English language and English literature option is chosen exams in both must be taken (although not necessarily provided by the same exam board) and a C grade or above achieved in English language. This rule applies to all English specific measures, such as Levels of Progress, EBacc, 5A*-C including English etc.

From 2016, to meet the English requirement of the EBacc exams in both must be taken and a C grade or above achieved in either English language or English literature. For the English and maths Threshold measure, a C in either English language or English literature will count and there is no requirement to take both. In Progress 8 and Attainment 8, there is no requirement to take both, but the best result will be double weighted if a pupil has taken both

A grade 5 will be classed as a 'good pass' from 2017. This is the grade that will be required in order to meet the English element of EBacc and the English and Maths Threshold measure. This is confirmed in the GCSE Reform Guide.

 

Science

This is the most complicated subject when it comes to Pathway discounting, and 4Matrix accounts for all scenarios. It is discussed in detail in the 'Discounting and early entry guidance' document from the DfE: 

 

Disclaimer: 

You should always verify the totals appearing in 4Matrix independently before reporting your results. We do not accept any responsibility for the consequences of results that are reported which are subsequently found to be incorrect for any reason - including the possibility of calculation errors in the 4Matrix application itself. Our liability is limited to correcting any programming faults that may be found.

 
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