Back in January we got a mauling from a couple of local authority ICT advisers who felt that our KS3 ICT Assessment didn’t cover the full range of processes at the higher levels. “Never mind” said I, “it’s all online so we can change it in a trice”. Ahem.
The ‘trice’ turned out to be six months, almost to the day. Between creeping elegance (we more than doubled the number of quesions, and added formative feedback to every one), the schedule of a very busy author, various emergencies at our end and the need to test and retest everything before it was launched, we managed to eat up half a year before we had something I was definitely convinced was step beyond the old assessments.
Finally, it’s ready, and I’ve spent a (frankly, tedious) weekend going through the mechanics of launching it. New content to load onto the site (done), old content to be suitably flagged so it can’t be used anymore (done), everything checked one last time (done), everything checked for a last, last, final time because what can go wrong, will (done), several thousand teachers informed by email (done), beautiful sunshine missed out on (bah), but never mind…it’s launched.
And, at the cost of working through the weekend instead of waiting until Monday and delegating all the work, I’ve got it ready before the end of the half-term break.
Now the good bit. I get to watch the site stats as existing users come on to check out the new tests, and non-users check the free demos to see what all the fuss is about and, hopefully, become convinced it’s time to buy a subscription. If it’s up your street, why not check out the KS3 ICT Assessment demos on the Chalkface website yourself.
P.S. Notwithstanding my bellyaching above, the bulk of the work was actually done by author Mark Leighton and manager Miranda Broadhurst. And I didn’t miss the whole weekend at all, because I spent Saturday afternoon at Strawberry Fair.