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Features of best assessment practice - Czech Republic

Assessment as the process of the whole-school approach toward pupil’s achievements is described through the example of practice in the Basic School Dr. Jana Malíka v Chrudimi, Czech Republic. This school is a good example of how to use formative assessment to stimulate and challenge both sides of the teaching and learning process. Teachers are motivated to look for suitable teaching methods and a supportive educational environment to enable all pupils’ appropriate access to education. Pupils are stimulated into new efforts without taking the risk of exclusion from their natural social environment.

Main features include:

  • Teachers are highly skilled; they are responsible, knowledgeable, motivated and committed to the school.
  • Teachers and pupils have the individual freedom to develop their own teaching and learning strategies.
  • The vision of school education is clear and shared.
  • Parents are welcome to co-operate.

Formative assessment is a process, one in which information about learning is evoked and then used to modify the teaching and learning activities in which teachers and pupils are involved. Such an interaction process may involve a teacher with a pupil, but might also occur between pupils in peer-assessment work (Black et al., p.122). In our opinion this example from the Czech School shows the way of implementing formative assessment within the school practice.

The principles of this approach are the basis for the national policy towards formative pupils’ assessment, for using the assessment as a tool in reaching success for every child. It is a big challenge for teachers to develop personal competencies enabling “fairness” in the assessment of a pupil. The traditional approach of assessing pupil performances is built on comparing pupils and their knowledge without being significantly aware of the concept that each pupil is different.

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