15 April 2021

Spotlight on Progress and Achievement

We report on student learning in writing to parents throughout the year using a digital portfolio. We do not send home a "report" on paper at the end of the year, but will provide a summary of where they are at in the core learning areas of Reading, Writing and Maths. We also ask parents to meet with teachers in person twice a year to discuss their child's learning.

While we previously used Seesaw, this year we have started to use Spotlight to report on learning progress and achievement. Spotlight is part of the eTAP student management system that we use so from now on all of our assessment and learning information will be held in the same place. Parents can access Spotlight via the @school parent portal via their computer or the @school parent app on their phone. Parents who are already using the @school portal or app, will notice a new button labelled "Spotlight" appearing in the next few days. Clicking on the Spotlight button will give you access to your child's digital portfolio of progress and achievement.

Spotlight has many features and benefits that Seesaw could not provide so we've made the leap. Teachers have spent time this term learning to use it and have started to post up evidence of children's learning and achievement - but we've got a long way to go before we are experts. As we've started learning to use Spotlight we've realised that it is a lot more complicated that we had first realised, and it's going to take a while before we can confidently use all of the features and benefit from what it has to offer. Please bear with us while we are learning.

Reporting Schedule

Each term teachers will report on your child's learning in 3-5 different curriculum areas. In Term 1 they have reported on progress and achievement in spelling, handwriting, basic facts and writing. When you look at your child's Spotlight record you will see comments and evidence (either a link to the work or a photo of it) for those 4 aspects of the curriculum.

In Term 2 teachers will report on reading, maths, writing and Te Reo Māori. They will also report on learning related to our values, and make blog posts to give you a window into their school day.

You can see our Reporting Schedule (for Whānau) via this link. Please note that this may change during the year.

What parents need to do

Watch the explanation videos

Actually, you only need to do this if you want to - but it may fill in some gaps and help to understand what Spotlight is all about.

Youtube video: Using the parent app and Sharing Learning Through Spotlight

Get the App, bookmark the portal

If you haven't already, get the @school app. We will resend the link and the instructions in the next few days to those of you who haven't accessed it yet. Please take time to carefully read the instructions so that you can quickly get access to your child's digital portfolio and keep up to date with their learning.

Turn on notifications

You may need to do this both in the app and in your phone. With notifications turned on you'll know as soon as anything new gets posted.

Attend an information session

In the first half of next term, we will run some short information sessions for parents. These will be helpful for anyone who wants a longer explanation about how we report on your child's progress and achievement and why we are using Spotlight to do it. At these sessions there will be opportunities to ask questions.

Ask for help; tell us what you think

We know that some parents have had some trouble getting into the app in the past. If it's not working for you, and you can't find a friend to give you some pointers, get in touch with Anneleah in our school office, for extra help.

We are always interested in hearing your feedback so let us know what you think. If you send your comments and questions in over the next couple of weeks, we will ensure that we address these at upcoming information sessions.

More on the @school app

Over the next few months you can expect to see us using the @school app in more ways to keep in touch with you, and hope that you'll also use it to keep in touch with us.

You already have the 'Blog' button, and it's our intention to use this more. You also have the "Absence" button and many of you are already using this to let us know that your child is sick or to explain another reason why they aren't at school.

In future you can expect us to only send out our newsletters and pānaui via the app….but we'll give you plenty of warning about this.

Kathryn Smith


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