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France:Assessment in Primary Education

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Overview France

Contents

France:Political, Social and Economic Background and Trends

France:Historical Development

France:Main Executive and Legislative Bodies

France:Population: Demographic Situation, Languages and Religions

France:Political and Economic Situation

France:Organisation and Governance

France:Fundamental Principles and National Policies

France:Lifelong Learning Strategy

France:Organisation of the Education System and of its Structure

France:Organisation of Private Education

France:National Qualifications Framework

France:Administration and Governance at Central and/or Regional Level

France:Administration and Governance at Local and/or Institutional Level

France:Statistics on Organisation and Governance

France:Funding in Education

France:Early Childhood and School Education Funding

France:Higher Education Funding

France:Adult Education and Training Funding

France:Early Childhood Education and Care

France:Organisation of Programmes for Children under 2-3 years

France:Teaching and Learning in Programmes for Children under 2-3 years

France:Assessment in Programmes for Children under 2-3 years

France:Organisation of Programmes for Children over 2-3 years

France:Teaching and Learning in Programmes for Children over 2-3 years

France:Assessment in Programmes for Children over 2-3 years

France:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Early Childhood Education and Care

France:Primary Education

France:Organisation of Primary Education

France:Teaching and Learning in Primary Education

France:Assessment in Primary Education

France:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Primary Education

France:Secondary and Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

France:Organisation of General Lower Secondary Education

France:Teaching and Learning in General Lower Secondary Education

France:Assessment in General Lower Secondary Education

France:Organisation of General Upper Secondary Education

France:Teaching and Learning in General Upper Secondary Education

France:Assessment in General Upper Secondary Education

France:Organisation of Vocational Upper Secondary Education

France:Teaching and Learning in Vocational Upper Secondary Education

France:Assessment in Vocational Upper Secondary Education

France:Organisation of Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

France:Teaching and Learning in Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

France:Assessment in Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

France:Higher Education

France:Types of Higher Education Institutions

France:First Cycle Programmes

France:Bachelor

France:Short-Cycle Higher Education

France:Second Cycle Programmes

France:Programmes outside the Bachelor and Master Structure

France:Third Cycle (PhD) Programmes

France:Adult Education and Training

France:Distribution of Responsibilities

France:Developments and Current Policy Priorities

France:Main Providers

France:Main Types of Provision

France:Validation of Non-formal and Informal Learning

France:Teachers and Education Staff

France:Initial Education for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

France:Conditions of Service for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

France:Continuing Professional Development for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

France:Initial Education for Academic Staff in Higher Education

France:Conditions of Service for Academic Staff Working in Higher Education

France:Continuing Professional Development for Academic Staff Working in Higher Education

France:Initial Education for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

France:Conditions of Service for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

France:Continuing Professional Development for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

France:Management and Other Education Staff

France:Management Staff for Early Childhood and School Education

France:Staff Involved in Monitoring Educational Quality for Early Childhood and School Education

France:Education Staff Responsible for Guidance in Early Childhood and School Education

France:Other Education Staff or Staff Working with Schools

France:Management Staff for Higher Education

France:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Higher Education

France:Management Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

France:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

France:Quality Assurance

France:Quality Assurance in Early Childhood and School Education

France:Quality Assurance in Higher Education

France:Quality Assurance in Adult Education and Training

France:Educational Support and Guidance

France:Special Education Needs Provision within Mainstream Education

France:Separate Special Education Needs Provision in Early Childhood and School Education

France:Support Measures for Learners in Early Childhood and School Education

France:Guidance and Counselling in Early Childhood and School Education

France:Support Measures for Learners in Higher Education

France:Guidance and Counselling in Higher Education

France:Support Measures for Learners in Adult Education and Training

France:Guidance and Counselling in a Lifelong Learning Approach

France:Mobility and Internationalisation

France:Mobility in Early Childhood and School Education

France:Mobility in Higher Education

France:Mobility in Adult Education and Training

France:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Early Childhood and School Education

France:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Higher Education

France:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Adult Education and Training

France:Bilateral Agreements and Worldwide Cooperation

France:Ongoing Reforms and Policy Developments

France:National Reforms in Early Childhood Education and Care

France:National Reforms in School Education

France:National Reforms in Vocational Education and Training and Adult Learning

France:National Reforms in Higher Education

France:National Reforms related to Transversal Skills and Employability

France:European Perspective

France:Legislation

France:Glossary

Pupil Assessment

There are two types of pupil assessment: regular assessments and standardised assessments: regular assessments and standardised assessments.


Regular assessments - school report book

At elementary school, regular assessments are made by teachers during each cycle to test pupils' acquired skills. These assessments do not use national standardised tests. They are based on conventional tools such as written assignments, tests, etc.

These regular assessments are featured in the "school report book" (livret scolaire) tracing the pupil's school record from the end of nursery school to the end of elementary school and observing skills acquired in view of his/her collège entrance. This book is used to inform parents regularly of their children's progress and to organise exchanges between primary school and collège teachers to guarantee continuity of teaching.

The school record book includes the following (circular no. 208-155 of 24 November 2008):

  • Regular assessment documents used in the school for regular monitoring of the pupil's progress throughout the school year;
  • The results, in French and Maths, of the national CE1 and CM2 tests (at second and at the last year of primary education);
  • Certification of knowledge and skills in CE1 and CM2 with reference to national curricula.

○    At the end of the basic learning cycle (CE1), these certifications concern:
▪    mastery of the French language;
▪    main elements of mathematics;
▪    social and civic skills;
○    At the end of the consolidation cycle (CM2), these certifications concern:
▪    mastery of the French language;
▪    practice of a foreign modern language;
▪    main elements of mathematics and scientific and technological culture;
▪    mastery of usual information and communication techniques;
▪    humanist culture;
▪    social and civic skills;
▪    autonomy and initiative.

  • First aid and basic road safety education certificates;
  • If applicable, modern language acquisition certificates;
  • Proposals made by the teachers' council and decisions taken at the end of the school year as to the conditions of future schooling.


At the end of elementary school, the school report book is sent to parents. Information relating to knowledge and skills in CM2, results of CM2 national tests as well as certificates are transmitted to the pupil's reception collège.


Standardised assessments 

Progressive assessment of knowledge and skills of the "common base" is done through national standardised assessment, organised in three stages:

  • the first assesses acquisition of reading and writing, as well as initial mathematical elements. The test is taken by CE1 pupils (second year of elementary school; 7 to 8 year olds);
  • the second stage is an appraisal of CM2 pupils' acquisitions (last year of elementary school; 10-11 year olds) in the seven major skill areas.
  • the third stage concerns collège pupils (last year of lower secondary education); 14-15 year olds) It assesses the seven skill areas of the common base.


The personal skills record book

The personal skills record book (decree no. 2007-860 of 14 May 2007; the Educational Code, articles D.311-6 to D.311-9) is an institutional tool that certifies the acquisition of the seven common base skills, from primary school to the end of compulsory education. It has been used in primary schools since 2008, and in secondary schools since 2009. The validation of common-base skills is carried out at three points along the educational pathway. The personal record book is thus made up of certifications regarding mastering skills and set out on the basis of skills evaluations carried out as part of the normal teaching environment:

  • From level 1, which is completed at the end of the second year of elementary school (CE1). The following areas are evaluated: mastery of the French language, the main elements of mathematics, as well as social and civic skills;
  • From level 2, completed at the end of the final year of elementary school (CM2). An evaluation is made of the student’s level of acquisition of the seven common-base skills;
  • From level 3, at the end of the final year of secondary school, or at the end of compulsory education: that certification also covers the student’s acquisition of the seven common-base skills.

At primary school, the personal skills record book is one of the components of the School Report Book. Certifications covering mastery of knowledge and skills, completed in the second years and in the last year of primary level, are passed on to the family. At the end of year the last year of priamary level, the record book is passed to the secondary school. It is the pupil’s teacher who validates common-base skills, as part of the teachers’ council. Skills that are not validated at the end of primary school are assessed afresh in secondary school.

In secondary school, the record book also includes certifications issued in the course of compulsory schooling: road-safety certifications, first and second levels; “Civic Prevention and Safety, level 1” certification; Computer and internet certificate (B2i). The main teacher is responsible for completing the record book. However, validating a skill is a final decision that involves the whole educational team. At the end of the 3rd class, the family is given a certificate of mastery of common base skills.

Teachers have tools to help in evaluation that are supplied by the Department for National Education, e.g. reference grids.

Furthermore, a sample personal skills record book can be accessed online.

However, a review is due of the current evaluation of common base knowledge and skills, which came in for criticism from the General Inspectorate of National Education. In particular, the pointless complexity of the current personal skills record book is an impediment to its appropriation by teachers and by pupils’ families.

Hence, in the autumn of 2012, the minister asked the Directorate General of School Teaching, in conjunction with the General Inspectorate of National Education, to make swift proposals concerning concrete ways of lightening the personal skills record book, those ways to be implemented in schools and in school establishments for the current school year. That transitional measure will, in particular, allow for validation under more satisfactory conditions of common-base knowledge and skills at the end of the current 2013-2014 year.


Progression of Pupils

A pupil's progression in each cycle is determined on the basis of the teacher's proposal to the cycle teachers' council. After examination of the situation of each child, the cycle teachers' council states an opinion concerning the transfer from one cycle to another and the time taken by pupils in the cycle: this can be lengthened or shortened by one year, depending on children's learning rhythms.
The school head informs the parents of the proposals made. Parents can dispute the decision within a 15 day deadline, sending a justified appeal to the academic director who makes the final decision.


Certification

There are no exams at the end of elementary schooling to determine the transfer to lower secondary education. All pupils are entitled to attend collège unless the relevant teacher objects. At the age of 12, all pupils should leave primary education and must be registered in a collège regardless of their level. There is no document certifying the end of elementary education.