York Trials Unit
Department of Health Sciences
Faculty of Sciences
ARRC Building, University of York
Parent/Carer Information: Evaluation of ReflectED
We are writing to you because the head teacher at Bessacarr Primary has chosen to take part in the evaluation of ReflectED Metacognition. Researchers from the University of York and Durham University have been chosen by the Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) (an organisation funding research into education) to independently evaluate the effectiveness of ReflectED. In particular, we are looking at the impact of ReflectED on pupils’ attainment in maths and reading.
What is ReflectED?
ReflectED is a programme that focusses on developing metacognitive skills to improve attainment. Metacognitive skills help pupils to think about and reflect on their own learning, including thinking about what helps them to learn. ReflectED was developed, and is being led, by staff from Rosendale Primary School and Children’s Centre in London.
How is ReflectED being evaluated?
This project uses a randomised controlled trial (RCT) to help us to see if participating in ReflectED has an impact on pupil attainment. In the autumn term 2017 your child’s school will be randomly selected (by a computer) to either receive ReflectED for five school terms (intervention group) or to continue with their usual teaching (control group). If your child’s school is allocated to receive ReflectED, teachers will receive training and have access to additional resources and support in teaching metacognitive skills. Your child’s school will also timetable a weekly ReflectED lesson focussing on metacognition skills (30 minutes, once each week) in all classes.
Why are we writing to you?
We are writing to all parents/carers of pupils in Year 1 and Year 5 in September 2017 in all of the schools that have signed up to participate, because our evaluation focusses on these year groups. At the end of the trial, researchers will compare results for pupils in maths and reading assessments from schools that have used ReflectED (intervention group) to results for schools that have not used ReflectED (control group). To make this comparison we would like to collect some information about your child: some of this information will be gathered directly from your child’s school (i.e. name, date of birth, unique pupil number, free school meal eligibility) and some (including national assessment results) from the National Pupil Database (NPD) (held by the Department for Education). Pupils in Year 5 in January 2018 will also be asked to complete a short (10-15 minutes) questionnaire to explore their self-reported metacognitive skills, they will be asked to complete the same questionnaire again in summer term 2019. During the study, researchers will visit a sample of schools to observe ReflectED lessons and talk to some pupils about their experiences of it (in short audio recorded focus groups of no longer than 20 minutes).
Pupils’ assessment results and all other pupil data will be treated with the strictest confidence. Named data will be matched with the National Pupil Database and shared with ReflectED, the evaluation team (University of York and Durham University), the EEF and EEF’s data contractor FFT Education and in an anonymised form in the UK Data Archive. We will not use your child’s name or the name of the school in any report or publications arising from the research.
Please note: not all schools will be asked to participate in pupil focus groups; we will visit a sample of the 140 schools that we will recruit. Audio recordings of focus groups will be stored securely and in line with Data Protection Act (1998) and destroyed 1 year after completion of the evaluation.
If you do not want your child to participate (via the sharing of their data, their participation in focus groups, or both), please inform their teacher by returning the opt-out form enclosed.
Please find attached a list of frequently asked questions and their answers. If you would like more information about the evaluation of ReflectED or have any questions, please contact the evaluation team at email@example.com or Louise Gascoine on 01904 321809.
If you have any questions or would like further information about ReflectED please contact the project team at Rosendale School via firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 0208 6704962.
Thank you in anticipation of your help
Dr Louise Gascoine, Professor David Torgerson and the ReflectED evaluation team
Evaluation of ReflectED: Opt-out Form
If you DO NOT want your child to take part in the evaluation of ReflectED, please return this form to your child’s school by Monday 11th December (if you are happy for your child to take part please do not return this form to school).
Please note that if you choose to opt out, you can opt out of one or both aspects below. E.g. if you do not want information about your child to be shared, but are happy for them to participate in an audio recorded focus group then you should only tick the first box.
I DO NOT give permission for information about my child (including name, date of birth, free school meals eligibility), questionnaire and assessment results to be shared (and linked to the NPD) for use in the evaluation of ReflectED
I DO NOT give permission for my child to participate in an audio recorded focus group about ReflectED
Child’s school:Page Break
Evaluation of ReflectED
Frequently Asked Questions for Parents/Carers
What is ReflectED? ReflectED is a whole school approach to teaching pupils metacognitive skills that was developed by teachers at Rosendale Primary School in London. In summary, the ReflectED programme comprises training for school staff (delivered by the ReflectED team), lesson plans for weekly metacognition lessons and access to an app (Seesaw) for pupils to record reflections about their learning.
Will I find out if my child’s school has been randomly allocated to receive ReflectED or to continue with teaching as usual? Your child’s school will find out which group they have been allocated to in November 2017, we are happy for them to share this information with you if you would like to know.
What happens if my child’s school is allocated to receive ReflectED? The school will receive training and access to the aspects of ReflectED described above. All children in your child’s school will receive ReflectED for the duration of the evaluation (five terms beginning in January 2018); the head teacher has decided to implement it as part of the curriculum in your child’s school.
Why do the researchers want to look at data from the National Pupil Database (NPD)? The NPD is a government database where information about all pupils in English schools and their exam results (e.g. SATs) are stored. Looking at data on the NPD will allow the researchers to compare the attainment of pupils in schools who did and did not receive five terms of the ReflectED programme. To match data on the NPD we need to ask your child’s school to provide their full name, date of birth and unique pupil number. The funder of the research (EEF) has also asked us to collect information about free school meal eligibility, because they are interested in exploring the reach of the interventions that they fund. All data will be transferred securely by schools to the evaluation team.
What is the measure of metacognition for pupils in year 5 in January 2018 (repeated when they are in year 6 in summer term 2019)? The Junior Metacognitive Awareness Inventory (JrMAI) is a short, self-report questionnaire where pupils are asked to read and respond to 12 statements using a three point scale. E.g. “I know when I understand something”; “I can make myself learn when I need to…” (1 = never, 2 = sometimes, 3 = always).
Why do the evaluators want to talk to some children about their experiences of ReflectED? When looking at how effective a programme is, it is important for researchers to consider different factors that may affect this. We will look at how ReflectED has been implemented in different schools and are interested in what pupils and their teachers think of it. The researchers would like to audio record focus groups with pupils to allow them to engage fully in conversation rather than focussing on writing notes. The focus groups will include 4-6 pupils at a time and last no longer than 20 minutes, we would expect that pupils will enjoy this opportunity to talk about their learning.
Do the researchers on the evaluation team have DBS clearance? All of the researchers visiting schools are required to have DBS clearance.
Is data about my child stored securely? All data, including audio recordings, will be stored securely and in line with the Data Protection Act (1998). Data will be stored in an anonymous format and kept separately from identifiable data (e.g. children’s names).
Has the evaluation of ReflectED research project received ethical approval? The project has received full ethical approval from the School of Education at Durham University and the Department of Health Sciences at University of York.
Is my child’s participation in the research confidential? Unless the researchers are worried about the safety or wellbeing of a child, information provided by children in the research (e.g. from discussions in focus groups or on written responses to the metacognition measure/JrMAI) will be kept confidential and anonymous.
Where can I find out the results of the evaluation of ReflectED? The evaluation team have to produce a final evaluation report. This is due in March 2020 and will be published by the EEF on their website (https://educationendowmentfoundation.org.uk); this final report will not name any schools or individual participants. You can read about the original trial that produced promising results on the EEF website.
I am happy for my child to participate, what do I need to do next? If you are happy for your child to take part in the ReflectED Evaluation you do not need to do anything more, thank you for taking the time to read this.
I am not happy for my child to participate, what do I need to do next? If you do not want your child’s information to be collected and used, please sign the attached opt-out consent form and return it to your child’s school as soon as possible.
I was happy for my child to participate but I’ve changed my mind and no longer want my child’s information to be shared, what do I do? You are free to withdraw your child from the research project at any time. Please tell your child’s school or contact the evaluation team directly by email email@example.com or phone 01904 321809.
I have another question… If you would like more information about the evaluation of ReflectED or have any questions, please contact the evaluation team at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have specific questions about how ReflectED is taught please contact the ReflectED team at email@example.com or by telephoning 0208 670 4962.
How We Keep Parents Informed
Parent consultations are held once per term, when parents and children are invited to meet with the teacher to discuss the child’s progress and on-going needs. These happen in the Autumn and Spring terms and if necessary an appointment can be made with the class teacher regarding specific concerns in the Summer Term.
Each half term a Pupil Information Leaflet is sent to parents. These include the curriculum areas being covered.
In addition, we hope to invite parents to an afternoon at least once per year where children can share their learning experiences. At the end of the school year a written report is sent home and written parental comments are welcomed. Parents may request to see their child’s teacher at a mutually convenient time to discuss their child’s progress and targets throughout the year.
We endeavour to keep parents informed at all times. A newsletter is sent home each half term as well as after special events in school. The School website is also a valuable source of information and well worth a look. Urgent or immediate messages are sent via our text messaging service.
We also have a Parent Support Adviser who works with families in terms of specific issues. Please contact Jo Howe via the school office for more information.
Our School Uniform
Our school uniform consists of:
- Grey trousers, school shorts, skirt or pinafore
- Red sweatshirt, jumper or cardigan
- White shirt or blouse
- White or red polo shirt
- Black flat shoes (not trainers)
- Red & white checked summer dress
Embroidered school sweatshirts and polo shirts can be obtained from Cliff’s in Doncaster town centre.
- Plain white t-shirt
- Black shorts (not cycling shorts)
- Black leotard
- Plain white t-shirt
- Black shorts (not cycling shorts)
- Black track suit in colder weather
- Pumps or trainers for outdoors
Important information about school uniform
We appreciate that black tracksuits may be difficult to obtain, therefore navy blue or dark grey are acceptable. Please note that personal football strips are not allowed. Jewellery is not allowed except for a watch. Earrings are not permitted for health & safety reasons. If you want your child to have pierced ears then may we suggest they are done in the 6 week summer break to allow for the healing process to be complete before returning to school. If ears are pierced during term time then they must be covered by plasters or tape, supplied by parents, until the earrings can be removed. Children in year 5 should not have their ears pierced during the school term as earrings cannot be worn for swimming and must be removed. Covering with plasters after the healing process is complete is not an option. If children persistently arrive at school with earrings uncovered then they will be asked to remove them.
Please mark all articles of clothing with your child’s name.
Promoting a Healthy School
The school cooks and serves a balanced meal on the premises. A cafeteria system operates at lunchtime when pupils are able to select from a limited choice menu which guarantees healthy well balanced meals.
For children of junior age Year 3- Year 6), a school meal costs £2.30 per day / £11.50 per week. Payments to be made over ParentPay.
Parents on low income may qualify for free meals for their children. Details can be obtained from the Free School Meals section at DMBC on 734123.
Should a child wish to move from school dinners to packed lunches then 2 weeks’ notice should be given in writing to Miss Russell.
- To ease the administrative burden your child must remain on packed lunches until the end of the term.Following that time if he/she would like to return to school dinners then a note or a phone call to Miss Russell, in the school office, is requested before the start of a new term.
- Packed lunches should be brought to school in a suitable container, which is not overlarge due to the limited space in each classroom for storage.
- The school will provide a drink for children who bring a packed lunch and, therefore, there is no need to include a drink in their packed lunch box.
- All rubbish generated from packed lunches, e.g. empty packets, cartons, etc. must be taken home.
- Pupils are expected to leave the dining table in a reasonably clean and tidy state ready for the next group of children.
Pupils are eligible to receive a free one-third pint of milk per school day until the day of their fifth birthday. Parents must register their child for free and paid milk through CoolMilk (www.coolmilk.com). As their fifth birthday approaches parents will be sent a reminder from CoolMilk (if a registered email address has been given) and payment can be made through their website. Payments made before mid-day Tuesday will be processed by CoolMilk for the following Monday. Payment for school milk cannot be made at the school.
Pupils are encouraged to bring a water bottle to school and to drink water throughout the day. This bottle should be clear and should not contain anything but water. There is a water cooler situated in each key stage and pupils may fill their water bottles as and when required.
The partnership between home and school is very important and we believe it is good for our children to witness parents and school working together towards a common goal. Parents are encouraged to come into school on a regular basis in order to help in various ways.
The main aim is the enhancement of the partnership between school and home, promoting opportunities for parents to experience first-hand what occurs in school thus furthering their knowledge and understanding of the basic aims of the school.
In addition it is felt that parents may be able to offer specific talents and skills that will complement the school curriculum and it provides an opportunity for children to meet and work with other adults thus developing their skills of adaptability and co-operation.
Parents who express a wish to work voluntarily in school are given a booklet containing essential information relating to the school day and safety procedures. Helpers will be asked to fill in a form detailing their preferences in relation to time, year groups, etc. Rotas may have to be established in order to ensure that all offers of help can be accepted at some stage throughout the school year and therefore we ask parents to make an initial commitment of one term only.
For security reasons all parents who are helping in school must report to the office and sign in, and on leaving sign out. The school is committed to ensuring the safety of all children on the school premises. All regular volunteers will be required to complete a Disclosure and Barring Service check.
Holiday Pattern 2017/2018 School Year
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