It is critical to prioritise the improvement of systemic and formal assessments in schools as we move towards improving quality learning outcomes in the General Education and Training band.
Acting Director for National Assessment, Dr Mark Chetty, addressed school principals in the Eastern Cape Province saying, “We must understand the identity of teachers in the 21st century classroom. We must emphasize that teachers play a vital role in mediating and measuring learning. The development of teachers, along with principals and education staff, must provide them with the knowledge, values, attitudes and competencies needed to assist every learner, within a context of inclusivity, to be suitably equipped to respond to skills of a changing world and future work. This will include utilising higher frequencies of data diagnostics, evaluative forms of assessment, and modern electronic platforms and applications.”
Dr Chetty added that a critical step in monitoring the success of implementing new policies and innovation, and whether learners are suitably equipped for the 21st Century will be the development of good metrics that provide valuable feedback on system-wide improvements. “According to a 2018 World Bank Report, a lack of measurement makes it hard to access the status quo, to make predictions and to know what actions taken are making a difference. It is therefore encouraging that social partners and teacher unions are supporting the modern design of the Systemic Evaluation Programme to evaluate aspects and components of the Basic Education Eco-System to provide all relevant stakeholders with a framework for improving learner performance from Grades R to 12,” Dr Chetty concluded.