Marking Policy

Next Review: September 2016



Marking is an essential part of planning, assessment, teaching and learning.  Responding to pupils’ work through constructive comment acknowledges achievement, promotes positive attitudes and behaviour and leads to an improvement in standards.

Teachers follow an agreed system and consistent procedures in responding to pupils’ work in order to give clear messages to pupils, parents and other teachers about individual progress.

Evidence of our response to children’s work can be found recorded in books and on display, but much of Key Stage 1 work is practical and much response is verbal.  A great deal of verbal praise is given.  We use our judgement as professionals in a constructive way when working with young learners to take them forward.

We believe that the most effective way of marking for all pupils is through dialogue.


  • To assist learning
  • To provide information for assessment
  • To encourage, motivate, support and promote positive attitudes
  • To inform planning
  • To promote higher standards
  • To correct errors and clear up misunderstandings
  • To recognise achievement, presentation and effort
  • To provide constructive feedback
  • To show pupils that we value their work
  • To allow pupils to reflect on their past performances and to set new targets together with the teacher.


At St. George’s marking:

  • Is constructive
  • Is related to needs, attainment and ability
  • Is related to specific targets and learning objectives which are shared and made clear to the pupils in advance
  • Follows consistent practice throughout the school
  • Ensures that pupils know how well they are doing and what they need to improve to make further progress
  • Provides pupils with opportunities to assess their own work and that of others
  • Is positive and constructive with appropriate praise given
  • Sets targets for children to ensure pupil motivation and involvement in progress
  • Encourages a dialogue between teacher and child

Teaching and Learning

This policy reflects and reinforces the aims that marking will assist learning by motivating, highlighting and target setting; thus, reinforcing what the children have learnt and identifying the next steps.

Broad Guidelines

Work will not always be marked in detail, but it will be checked. This simply indicates that work has been seen and can be done as the teacher moves around the room.

  • There may be times when it is appropriate for a T.A. to annotate work.
  • Work is marked as quickly as possible, i.e. same day or next day.
  • Homework is marked as rigorously as class work.
  • Red pens are not to be used for marking and care is always taken to preserve the integrity of pupils’ work.
  • Marking includes verbal and written feedback.
  • Work includes the date, title and learning objective (recorded by the children where possible and appropriate.)
  • Marking can sometimes be done in the classroom with the child or a group.
  • Talking partners – children are encouraged to evaluate their own and others’ achievements against the learning objective, in verbal or written form.
  • Self marking – this includes ‘smiley faces’ and the ‘traffic light’ system.
  • Responding to teachers’ comments is a skill and children will be taught how to reflect on these and respond to them.


In accordance with our Behaviour Policy teachers establish their own reward systems, appropriate to the age and needs of the children in their class.  These may be in the form of stamps, stickers and certificates.  Smiley faces etc. may also be used by individual teachers.

The whole school awards system is also used to reward achievement.

Class valuing of work by celebrating and sharing – teachers select children to show good work in the Friday Celebration Assembly.

Planning and Assessment

Marking informs planning and provides information for assessment and should always be carried out against the learning intention.

Corrections support the child’s learning and we remember that too many can overwhelm and demoralise the pupil.  The ability of the individual pupil and the effort that they have put into a piece of work will always need to be taken into account when marking.  Teachers use their professional judgement when deciding how many corrections to mark.

Teachers may plan to mark a group’s work, so that they can focus on developing particular objectives with targeted groups.

Marking is for the direct benefit and improvement of the children’s learning. Marking is therefore undertaken by the teacher to inform the child of the progress they are making and targets they need to work towards.

Marking for Improvement

Detailed developmental marking should be carried out frequently (as is relevant to the task) and enables the child/children to move their learning forwards through:

  • Corrections
  • Next steps
  • Suggestions for improvement
  • Editing

Agreed Code (please refer to the September 2014 Revised Marking Codes)

Whilst accepting that written marking of work has to be tailored to meet the abilities and ages of each child and the subject being marked, we do believe that a common framework is helpful.

The agreed marking codes will be displayed in every appropriate classroom so that all children are aware of the meaning of the various markings.

Comments are written whenever possible, giving targets for future work.

Time is given to pupils to reflect upon marking to ensure that they benefit from it.  They are also given the opportunity to discuss their work with the teacher.

Marking has the potential to be a powerful, manageable and useful ongoing diagnostic record of children’s achievement that feeds into future planning.  It is also a very effective medium for providing feedback to children about their progress.

Monitoring, Evaluation and Review

A key aspect of the Assessment Coordinator’s role is to monitor, evaluate and review the effectiveness of our marking procedures throughout the school.  This is achieved in a variety of ways including reviewing planning, scrutinising work, discussions with staff and pupils, observing in lessons, providing appropriate and high quality resources.  For further details see Monitoring, Evaluation and Review Policy.

Staff Development

We are committed to ensuring that all staff develop and maintain their skills and are able to make professional decisions regarding assessment and marking.  Staff are encouraged to identify areas in which they feel they may benefit from further training.  Training needs may also be identified by the subject leader or the team co-ordinator.  Training may be provided in a number of ways including in school provision and attendance on courses. The subject leader will ensure that staff is aware of training opportunities.

The Role of The Assessment Co-ordinator

  • To monitor the implementation of the marking policy.
  • To use assessment data to monitor progress.
  • To support staff with new ideas, resources and materials relevant to the policy.
  • To monitor standards and to lead work sampling sessions where staff moderate marking across the school.
  • To make recommendations for further improvement.

Other Related Documents

  • National Curriculum Key Stages 1 and 2
  • Assessment, Recording and Reporting Policy
  • Teaching and Learning, Monitoring, Evaluation and Review, Curriculum and Behaviour Policies
  • All other curriculum policies
  • Class teachers’ Planning and Day Books


This policy will be reviewed bi-annually by the Assessment Coordinator.  Any alterations that come from this review will be discussed with the Headteacher and ratified by the teaching staff and appropriate governing body sub-committee.

Marking Policy originally discussed and updated with all teaching staff and then adopted on September 2014

To be reviewed on an bi-annual basis with the next review in September 2016