A Parents’ Guide to reporting at Christ’s College

A Parents’ Guide to reporting at Christ’s College

2 A Parents’ Guide to reporting at Christ’s College




Types of reports


Interim Progress Grades (IPGs)


Schoolbox Learning Feedback


Progress Reports


Housemaster Reports


Learning Progressions


Learning is not linear


Focus on next steps


Student reflections


NCEA Reporting


Work types


When to expect information about your son


Who to contact with questions or concerns



Introduction School reports have been a part of school life for many decades. However, as we have grown to understand more about how children learn, reports have evolved and are far removed from the A+ – F scale many of us grew up with. To complicate matters, schools often report in unique ways based on their own systems and it can be difficult for new students and parents to understand what is being communicated.

Glossary: Trimester : The academic year is divided into three equal sections. Classes in a trimester rotation will rotate through the subjects about every 12 weeks. Trimester learning areas in Year 9: Art, Humanities, Science, Technology. Semester : The academic year is divided into two equal sections. All Diploma courses are semester based, with the change over of timetable occurring after 16 weeks of learning.

The following is designed to help explain the reporting philosophy and mechanisms at Christ’s College. Our reporting is continually developing in response to best practice in both assessment and feedback based on educational research. As you continue your journey as a parent at Christ’s College, we trust that our reporting provides you with great starting points for meaningful learning discussions with your sons.

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Types of reports

We have four key report types at Christ’s College. These are all distributed via the Schoolbox Parent Portal.

1. Interim Progress Grades (IPGs) Interim Progress Grades are released every three to four weeks via Schoolbox. These are accessed on the Parent Portal Homepage via the Academic Reports tab.

IPGs are designed to give parents, students, and the pastoral team an indication of how a student is tracking across their subjects by looking at the trends in the report. They are useful in highlighting any changes in work patterns or understanding as a prompt for further discussions. They should not be treated as a definitive comment on a student’s academic success, but rather an indicator as to whether a student is on track or not.

There are three categories in an IPG:

Your son shows diligence, perseverance, and determination with his learning; he strives to be at his best.



Your son respects himself, others, and his learning environment.

Individual Learning Progress

The degree to which your son has advanced in his skills, knowledge, and understanding in this subject.

Each category is reported on a four-point scale:



Individual Learning Progress

Always Usually Occasionally Rarely

Always Usually Occasionally Rarely

Outstanding Commendable Acceptable Minimal

Effort and Respect grades are the major measure of Academic Engagement for the Christ’s College Diploma in Years 10–11.


2. Schoolbox Learning Feedback Comment on your son’s work and achievement is provided ‘in real time’ through the Schoolbox Due Work function. These are accessed on the Parent Portal Homepage via the Grades tab.

We refer to this as Learning Feedback. Learning Feedback is linked to either major progression checkpoints or significant pieces of work. This may or may not have a grade published, depending on the context of the teacher’s comment. Teachers are asked to write a brief comment that provides feedback to the students and advice on next steps. You, as the parent, are ‘looking in’ on the conversation between the teacher and the student. By publishing this through Schoolbox – as and when the teacher has feedback to offer – students and parents are able to have up-to-date information on a student’s learning progress, rather than wait until halfway through a year to receive information in a more traditional school report format. You can see upcoming reports under the Due Assessment tab, which shows you upcoming due work.

We would strongly recommend you check that your Schoolbox notification settings are turned on to receive an email when ‘a teacher marks your child’s work’.

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3. Progress Reports These are accessed on the Parent Portal Homepage via the Academic Reports tab.

Progress Reports are a collection of all Learning Feedback published in the relevant academic period. These reports do not offer additional information, but rather provide a summary of comments and grades across subjects. This enables parents and students to have a permanent record of the Learning Feedback comments, as well as a moment to reflect on the comments when brought together.

4. Housemaster Reports These are accessed on the Parent Portal Homepage via the Academic Reports tab.

Housemaster reports are the opportunity for your son’s Housemaster to comment on the holistic development of your learner. This will include information about co-curricular commitments, as well as comment on their engagement in the House. These are produced at varying times, dependent on the year level. A notification will be sent alerting you to new Housemaster Reports.


Learning Progressions

All assessment in Years 9–11 is reported against Learning Progressions (LPs). LPs have been developed for each department, covering the major learning and skills that a student needs to develop over their first three years of secondary education. These are based on the New Zealand Curriculum, prerequisites for achieving NCEA Level 2, and any additional criteria deemed important for learning at Christ’s College. Learning Progressions are designed to capture a student’s overall ability. While there will be major assessments that may trigger a Learning Feedback, LPs take into account day-to-day classwork as well. There are two elements to the theory behind this. First, we wish to avoid a ‘working for assessment only’ mindset that can appear at secondary school. By showing students all learning contributes to the final outcome, we aim to instil work habits that set them up better for NCEA assessment, rather than work habits that can see them lurching from assessment to assessment and neglecting the learning between that is necessary for genuine understanding.

Second, understanding if a student is underperforming in assessment environments compared to day-to-day work will give us better information to indicate they may need help in a qualification system that may not be best suited to them. Christ’s College Learning Progressions have five stages: Foundation, Stage 1, Stage 2, Stage 3, Stage 4. A student at Stage 3 is deemed to be able to access Level 2 NCEA content with support. Working securely in Stage 4 indicates that a student is ready to succeed at NCEA Level 2. Where a student is placed along the Learning Progression will vary according to their strengths, prior learning, and own passions. However, the diagram below is an indication of the general age and stage of progressions for the subjects a student wishes to advance in. If a student is behind this guide, it is important to consider their personal pathway and whether this is a long-term trend (see page 10, Learning is not linear, for an explanation about why a student may appear to drop in their ‘stage’).

Learning Progressions Pathway for Subject Expertise

Stage 4

Stage 3

Stage 3

Stage 2

Stage 1


Up to Year 8

Year 9




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Reporting against Learning Progressions is a significant mind shift for many of us educated under a ‘pass or fail’ system. Of course, NCEA and tertiary study still operate as pass or fail. However, we know that, in practice, learning goes through peaks and troughs to get to that end assessment point. To ensure that our boys are ready for the NCEA assessment system in Year 12, we need to first ensure they understand the process of learning and how to build their base knowledge and skills during their first three years with us. Focus on next steps With the long-term goal of reaching Stage 4 in mind, we will be working with our students to focus on what the LPs are telling them they need to work on next. Many primary schools use Next Learning Steps as a major feedback tool and this is the same philosophy that underpins Learning Progressions. When looking at a Progressions rubric, a student should be able to see where they are at and what is the next step to reach the next stage. Parents can see this too when a Learning Feedback is published. The Grades pages will provide you with the ‘best fit’ stage for your son’s current progress, along with the teacher comment.

By clicking into the assessment details, the full Learning Progression rubric will be displayed. Students will be taught to focus on the criteria in the next stage so they know how they need to develop to progress in that subject.


Learning is not linear The most important aspect to take away from Learning Progressions is that a student will not systematically work through all LP stages at the same rate in all subjects. Each time a new skill is introduced, it is likely that a student will start at Foundation for that skill. Similarly, when the context of a knowledge or skill is changed, a learner may find they step back a stage or two initially, until they have learnt to apply these to changing tasks or topics. Therefore, it is important not to be alarmed about disparities in stages at any given time. Looking at the LPs as the stages across three years – a long-term view – is key. Look for overall progress and take the time to read about the next steps for a student. We have worked hard to ensure some degree of parity about the thinking and skills that each department is asking of their students. For example, you will find Stage 1 focuses on identification and recall, while Stage 4 is about explanation with detail, leading to evaluating and justifying. However, because of prior learning in certain subjects, students will have different starting points in different courses. A student may be at Stage 3 with certain mathematical skills while still at Stage 1 in a foreign language. Learning is not linear nor is it equal in pace. Our teachers are the experts about the best pathway and progress for learning and they will highlight if a boy’s progress is of concern. Topic based progressions vs holistic subject progressions While we have worked to have as much consistency as possible between subjects, it is still important to note that not all subjects can be reported on in the same way. Most subjects will be reporting the progress boys make holistically in the subject through the same indicators across each reporting checkpoint. However, some subjects teach content in very distinct units of work and a combined learning progression for all topics would misrepresent a boy’s progress. For example, a student may excel in the study of plants in Biology, but genetics may be an area where they struggle. Where a subject feels it is more appropriate to report based on topic, this will be indicated in the title of the Learning Feedback. The learning progression indicators will be different for each topic and as a result there may be more variation between progression stages than a subject which reports on the same indicators throughout a course. This is why it is so important to take the time to look at the further assessment details (as shown in the above rubric) to get the most accurate picture of your son’s progress.

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NCEA Reporting

In Years 12–13, reporting is based around NCEA assessment. Every time a student completes a major assessment, either internal or a practice external, teachers will publish a Learning Feedback. Teachers may also choose to provide general feedback at any stage. This may be connected to practice work or is a general checkpoint (most applicable to portfolio subjects). Please note that during Derived Grade school examinations, Derived Grades will not have a comment due to the nature of marking bulk school exams. Work types There is a range of work types that we report on and understanding the different types will help you understand where your son is with his NCEA.

NCEA Internal Assessment

You will note that the title begins with the Achievement Standard number which allows the result to go to the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA). The details in parentheses tell you how many credits the assessment was worth. The work type in italics indicates it is an internally assessed standard. When a Learning Feedback is published with this information, it means your son has completed an internal assessment and if given A, M, or E on the report, received the corresponding number of credits.

Derived Grades

Again, this title begins with the Achievement Standard number. The term Derived Grade refers to a practice External Assessment where the grade is held on file and then used in the event that a student is unable to complete their end-of-year examinations. This is not a final grade, but an indication of how the student is likely to perform in their end-of-year examination at that point in the course.

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Feedback Checkpoint

This work type is varied in its use, but the major determinant is that this is feedback that is not officially attached to an assessment grade (either final internal or derived grade). Teachers often choose to use this in the lead up to assessment to help students understand what further work is required to reach their potential in a standard.

Summative Learning Comment

This is specifically used at the end of a course to summarise a student’s learning. If a student’s course finishes with an assessment, this work type may not appear, but rather the teacher will include an end- of-course comment in the assessment report.


When to expect information about your son

Christ’s College reporting is designed to be ongoing and adaptive to a student’s learning programme. There are few ‘set times’ for reporting, but you can expect the following.

IPGs two to three times a term in Terms 1–3. (Years 9–11 will have an additional IPG in Term 4).

All years

Learning Feedback Technology and the arts: end of course learning progression Sciences, Te Reo, Religious Education: two Learning Progressions in a course All other full-year courses (including the Social Science rotations): four progressions across the course Learning Feedback Four period courses: two Learning Progressions per course Two period courses: end of course Learning Progression Teachers may choose to provide feedback not linked to progressions. Note: Te Ao Māori, Financial Literacy, and MINDfit are non-assessed classes Learning Feedback At least one report per term per course. May have more depending on level of assessment.

Progress Reports At the end of each trimester

Year 9

Progress Reports At the end of each semester

Years 10–11

Progress Reports At the end of each term

Years 12–13

Note that end of trimester/semester/term progress reports are published two to three weeks after the change in academic periods.

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Who to contact with questions or concerns If you have any questions or concerns about your son’s progress, your first contact is his Housemaster. Housemasters are best placed to work out what is happening for your son and work with his teachers and home for his best outcomes. If you have simple queries regarding clarifying points about a particular aspect of your son’s course, email his relevant teachers directly.


E: info@christscollege.com T: +64 3 366 8705 www.christscollege.com

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