I can clearly remember the moment, in 2013, at which National Curriculum Levels were no longer mandatory as part of school assessment. Having trained in 2007, this method of marking, reviewing, assessing and tracking work was all I had known as a teacher: the excitement felt at being able to move away from these structures was balanced out by a lack of clarity regarding next steps. I can imagine that this sentiment reverberated up and down the country - even across the world. As I had moved in to international education, I realised that this dependancy on such assessment methods had spread beyond the borders of our country.
What followed for me, upon my return to a UK Independent School as a Head of English, has been a journey in the truest sense of the word; I feel as though the move away from the strait-jacket of NC Levels has been gradual, considered and planned. Similarly, I recognise that the current situation is not perfect yet, but the process of getting here has caused me to reassess fundamental cornerstones of my own values and priorities, and to really consider the relationship between curriculum and assessment.