The PaCT frameworks have been extended
The Progress and Consistency Tool (PaCT) was developed to track students’ progress and achievement against the National Standards in years 1 to 8. The frameworks have now been extended so that they can be used to make judgments about student progress and achievement in years 9 and 10. This means they fully address level 5 of the New Zealand Curriculum (NZC).
1. How have the PaCT frameworks been extended?
More sets of illustrations have been added to the upper end of the progressions, and new illustrations have been added to some of the existing sets of illustrations.
The PaCT scale has consequently been extended from 1,000 to 1,300 and now fully addresses various aspects of students’ expertise as they use their reading and writing in curriculum tasks or solve mathematical problems at level 5 of the NZC.
2. What has changed in reading and writing?
Over three hundred illustrations have been added to the reading and writing frameworks.
- New illustrations have been added to the existing two sets of illustrations at the top of each aspect.
- An additional set of illustrations has been added to the top end of all of the aspects, with the exception of the encoding aspect of the writing framework. A new set of illustrations was not added to the encoding aspect because students’ encoding skills are fully developed at level 4 of the NZC.
These new illustrations describe students’ knowledge, skills, and attitudes when they are using their reading and writing in English, social sciences, and science.
3. Do the new reading and writing illustrations show students’ work at level 5 in English?
Yes, but they also show students using subject-specific reading and writing knowledge and skills as they work in science and the social sciences.
4. What do the labels “Core”, “English”, “Science”, or “Social sciences” mean on the reading and writing illustrations?
The core reading and writing illustrations describe student responses to a wide range of texts and tasks that are typical of classroom programmes in years 1 to 8.
The illustrations that are labelled English, social sciences, and science demonstrate the specific disciplinary literacy knowledge and skills embedded in rich learning tasks used in typical English, science, and social sciences classroom programmes in years 9 and 10.
5. Why do the reading and writing progressions focus on English, science, and the social sciences?
English, science, and social sciences were selected to be exemplified in the extended framework because all students in years 9 and 10 engage with these areas, and all three areas contain literacy-rich learning activities.
6. What has changed in maths?
Nineteen new illustrations have been added to the mathematics framework.
- New illustrations have been added to the existing set of illustrations at the top of the two statistics aspects.
- An additional set of illustrations has been added to the top end of the other aspects, with the exception of the additive thinking aspect. A new set of illustrations was not added to the additive aspect because students’ additive strategies are fully developed at level 4 of the NZC.
These new illustrations describe students’ knowledge, skills, and attitudes when they are working in mathematics and statistics at level 5 of the NZC.
7. Why are there no cross-curricular labels on the mathematics illustrations?
Unlike mathematics and statistics, reading and writing are not learning areas of the NZC, so cross-curricular illustrations were needed. Although some of the tasks in the mathematics illustrations are set in the context of other learning areas, they were all specifically developed to illustrate learning in mathematics and statistics.
8. How do we get started as a secondary school using PaCT?
Follow the getting started process on the PaCT info website www.pactinfo.education.govt.nz (external link) and if you need assistance, email firstname.lastname@example.org
9. How could my school use PaCT to make judgments about the reading and writing of students in years 9 and 10?
Schools decide which students they will use PaCT with. This could be the entire year group or targeted students.
Students in years 1 to 8 are mostly taught by one teacher who is therefore able to make judgments about how their students use their reading and writing in different areas of the curriculum. PaCT provides an opportunity for teachers to consider how students in years 9 and 10 use their reading and writing in English, science, and social sciences. Because it is unlikely that a student will have the same teacher for these three learning areas, schools will need to decide who is going to contribute to the judgment process. If more than one teacher is going to be involved, schools will need to decide how these teachers will work together, as only one judgment per aspect can be entered into PaCT. Possible options include judgments being made by:
- a literacy lead teacher
- a whānau/home room teacher in years 9 and 10
- the students’ English teacher
- some or all of the students’ teachers working collaboratively on some or all of the reading and writing aspects
- students participating in the judgment process by self-assessing against some or all of the aspects.
10. How could my school use PaCT to make judgments about the maths of students in years 9 and 10?
Students’ maths teachers are likely to be the ones best placed to make these judgments. They will be most familiar with what individual students know and can do across the breadth of the mathematics and statistics learning area. Teachers could also choose to involve students in making judgments, introducing an aspect of self-assessment
11. How could the new illustrations be useful to teachers of students in years 1 to 8?
All teachers will find the frameworks, which now extend from years 1 to 10, helpful for understanding how students’ expertise develops as they move through their schooling. The new illustrations will prompt teachers, particularly of students in years 7 and 8, to consider the kinds of opportunities their current classroom programme should provide in order for their students to enter secondary school well equipped with the literacy and mathematics needed for successful learning.