Assessment Policy – Middle Years

Purposes of assessment at Fountainhead School

Assessment is an integral part of teaching and learning process. To ensure the effectiveness of student’s educational experience it is important that varied assessment techniques should be used at regular intervals. The following are the objectives for assessment which we at Fountainhead school would be targeting as part of IB global community.

  1. To provide quality feedback to students so as to ensure growth in learning of students.
  2. To prepare students so that they can meet assessment requirements of IGCSE.
  3. To provide quality feedback to teachers regarding learner’s stage in the learning process, the level of knowledge acquired and the extent of skills development.
  4. To provide feedback to parents regarding student’s progress through grades.
  5. Ensuring that assessment is criteria related and not norm referenced.
  6. Ensure that the assessment process is aligned with school’s assessment objective.
  7. Ensuring that the assessment process is reliable and trustworthy.

Continuous assessment as an indicator of effective assessment and assessment practice

To measure the knowledge, understanding, and skills attained by students, it is necessary that continuous assessment should form an integral part of the Middle Years. The school provides ample opportunities for continuous assessment through varied assessments. The faculty at Fountainhead school will assess the student continuously over a period a time through his / her performance in group projects, activities or individual or group activities. The students will be receiving feedback from teachers at regular intervals which will enable them to focus on their areas of improvement and consolidate on their strengths. Through continuous assessment, the teachers will over a period of time ascertain the level of student’s progress and will be able to plan their teaching strategies so that effective learning takes place.

Assessment cycle

For the purpose of assessment, each academic year will be divided into two terms. The assessment cycle will comprise of:

Assessment Weightage of unit tests Weightage of Internal (Continuous) Assessment Weightage of Summative Assessment
First Term Exams nil nil 100%
Second Term Exams nil 20% 80%

Unit tests

  • Unit tests for each subject will be conducted after completion of each unit. Alternatively, 2 – 3 units may be merged together for the unit test. The subject teacher will notify the students in advance the date and the syllabus to be covered in the unit tests.
  • The marks gained in the unit tests will be communicated through email to the students and parents.
  • The unit test is an ongoing assessment and does not carry any weightage in the end of the year report.
  • In case if a student remains absent on the day of unit test then the unit test paper will be sent home later, once he/she joins back to school and a DD communication will be sent to the parent. In the unit test log, the student will be marked absent.
  • In case if the student is absent on the day of unit test then he/she will NOT be allowed to come to school only to appear for the unit test.

Internal Assessments

  • There will be 2 – 3 internal assessment tasks in each subject through the year.
  • The total weightage assigned to the overall Internal assessment component is 20 % For eg, for language – there were 3 internal assessment tasks. Task A has 10 % weightage, task 2 has 5 % weightage and task 3 has 5 % weightage. So the total weightage to the Internal Assessment component is 20 %
  • The internal assessments shall be conducted through the year. Even if an Internal assessment is conducted in the first term, the weightage will be added only in the final report.

Based on the requirement, the Internal assessment weightage may be changed for a few subjects, for which the students will be informed.

Term 2 exams

The syllabus for the whole year will be covered in the final examinations at the end of the year. The students are expected to prepare for the curriculum that is covered in both the terms.

Weightage system

For the purpose of calculation of overall grade for a student. The following weightage system will be applicable.

Weightage of


Weightage of Term 2 Examination(Summative)
20% 80%

Marks from each component will be added to calculate the final grade.


Fountainhead school believes in a transparent and fair assessment system. To this end, the grade boundaries for individual subjects will be provided to the students beforehand. The reason for having separate grade boundaries for each subject is the varied level of difficulty of each subject. For example, a subject from humanities (Social Science) cannot be judged at the same level that of Maths. Further, the grade boundaries will be as per the IGCSE pattern with Grade starting from a maximum of A* to a minimum of G. After G Grade the student will be considered as U i.e., ungraded which is equivalent to the failing condition.

Book Club 

As a school, we promote reading in a big way. To support this idea, we have initiated the Book Club for the Middle Years students. These are the minimum number of books; students from all the grades are expected to read throughout the year.

Grades Minimum
7 7 per year
8 8 per year
9 9 per year
10 10 per year

The Book club report is also shared with the term 1 report card. Please note that the students will not be given their end of the year report cards if they have not read the required number of books. Moreover, the teachers will not meet the parents during the PTC.

The student will not be allowed to attend classes in the next grade unless he/she has read the required number of books.

In case of Grade 10, the IGCSE certificate will not be handed over to the students; unless the minimum number of books are read.

Decision regarding promotion of student to the subsequent grade

The final decision regarding promotion of the student will be taken by HOS/Coordinator in consultation with the mentor teacher and subject teachers. For promotion to the subsequent grade, the student may be told to reappear in a specific subject/group of subjects(however it is not mandatory in every case and promotion might be given by HOS/Coordinator in some specific case without the student appearing for retest), if the HRT and the subject teacher are of the view that the student can improve his/her performance(if given a second chance). The final decision regarding promotion/retest will be taken by the HOS and will be considered as final.

Policy for Retake Examinations

Objective: For students who value their education and aspire to achieve better grades, retake examinations will give them an opportunity to do so. Students can learn from their mistakes and strive to improve their scores.

This will also give a clear understanding to all the stakeholders (students, teachers and parents) to frame the future plan of action for each student. The students or parents cannot choose to appear for retake examination just to get a better grade on the report card. The approval has to be given by SSVP / HOS in such circumstances.

Applicable to: All students from Grade 8 to 12

Values: Responsible and Excellence

For students of Grade 9

The option of retake examination will be given to students if the final grade achieved is as mentioned in below.  This includes the Internal assessment weightage (20%).

Conditions for retake examinations:

  • Grade E or less than E or
  • Grade U (failing condition)


Grades in most subjects are available from A*, A, B, C, D, E, F, G, and U is failing condition. The reason we recommend retake examinations for grades lesser than E is that students will face difficulty in meeting the requirements of IGCSE in Grade 9 and 10. Secondly, Diploma Program is very challenging, and so students getting grades E or less than E are likely to struggle to get the Diploma.

  • The retake examinations will be held in the first week of school as soon as the students rejoin in the new academic year; the results of which will be declared within two weeks. The dates for the retake examination will be posted in last week of May.
  • It is mandatory for the parents and students to meet the IGCSE coordinator on PTC when there is a failing condition or grades in one or more than 1 subjects are less than E.
  • The highest score out of the 2 examinations taken; will be considered and the final end of the year report card will be modified accordingly.
  • If a student fails – gets U or gets less than E grade, he/she may choose to drop that subject altogether. In this case, retake examination does not hold true. This decision has to be taken in consultation with the IGCSE coordinator, considering the ICE requirements.
  • This will help students to choose core / extended component wherever applicable, and it will also serve as a guideline for their career choices, based on their aptitude.
  • As per the guidelines by AIU – Association of Indian Universities; for admission to university courses in India, it is mandatory for students to get minimum 5 passes including English in IGCSE Examinations. Only then the IGCSE certificate will be considered Grade 10 equivalent in India.
  • Hence we can decide the number of subjects the student needs to take retake examination through discussion and mutual agreement.
  • If the parents and the student decide that they do not want to give a retake examination, the parents have to sign an undertaking Appendix 1 saying that they take complete responsibility to improve their child’s learning and future academic performance.
  • Even after the retake examination, grades do not improve, the undertaking Appendix 2 holds true.
  • Under failing conditions, the decision to promote/retain the student, to the next grade will be taken by Head Of School / Senior School Vice Principal, based on his/her performance in the retake examination as well as attitude towards academics. In cases where the student has failed multiple subjects, a retention is very likely.

Grade 10

As per the guidelines by AIU – Association of Indian Universities; for admission to university courses in India, it is mandatory for students to get minimum 5 passes including English (minimum Grade G in 5 subjects including English). AIU clearly mentions that 5Cs in IGCSE including English are required in the IGCSE examinations. AIU will not issue equivalency certificate if English is not one of the subjects included in the 5 passes in IGCSE. However please note that all universities and colleges in India do not ask for an equivalency certificate issued by AIU. Most universities have an eligibility department that looks into such matters though some of them require that a student has passed a language subject in IGCSE.

  • To fulfill this criterion, we recommend students to appear for retake examinations after reviewing their IGCSE results.
  • Students and parents can take a call whether to go for retake examinations or not, based on their career choices.
  • The students can start with the Diploma program, and simultaneously appear for retake examinations if he/she does not score 5 passes including English.
  • Please note that any student not getting the 5 passes is likely to struggle in the DP and student and parents need to be prepared accordingly to work harder as well as change their expectations accordingly.

Exceptional Circumstances

Students who require additional support

In such cases, the authorities discuss with the mentor teachers, subject teachers, and the counselor and provide access arrangements to the students, which may be in terms of giving extra time to the candidate, usage of word processor and/or others as prescribed by Cambridge International Exams. While taking a decision on this, student’s past record/performance and psychologist’s report (if any) will also be taken into consideration.


For a candidate who misses his/her examination, the retake policy will apply. If the student chooses not to appear for the next set of examinations scheduled in the first week of school, then the students’ performance through the year will be taken into consideration while taking a decision regarding promotion for the next year. Performance includes – feedback by the teacher, unit test scores, and scores of term 1 examinations. Further, in case the student has missed the examination in multiple subjects then the same rules will apply as in the case of a single subject. 

The school will not reschedule exams under the following circumstances, even if the prior information has been given about the same.

  • Family function
  • Out of town
  • Death in the family
  • Missed the bus

The school may decide to reschedule the examination under the following circumstances.

  • If the student goes for a national event, approved by the school
  • Sudden illness, accident or physical injury

Final decision regarding rescheduling of the exams lies with the school authorities. Parents cannot request for arranging a retest.

However in extreme cases like accidents or any form of physical injury to the candidate where the student is unable to appear for the retest, then the decision regarding promotion shall be taken based on the overall performance of the student through the year, which includes – feedback by the teacher, unit test scores and scores of term 1 examinations.

Also the school may or may not give the same paper for such retest. It is mandatory for the student to sign an undertaking before appearing for the retest that the student was having no access to the examination paper/s of that/those specific subject/s in which he/she has missed the examination/s and has not seen or heard about the content of the examination paper/s . In case the student is found guilty of misrepresentation of facts then appropriate punitive action will be taken against him/her which may include awarding zero marks or marking the candidate absent for that particular examination. Also in extreme cases, HOS have the right to expel student from the school. The decision of HOS will be considered as final in this case and no subsequent request will be entertained whatsoever.

In subjects, where there are more than one components(Exams), and if a candidate appears for anyone component, but not all components – then he/she will be marked absent for the entire examination. The marks of the component for which the student appeared for will not appear on the report card, but will be shared by the teacher with the student informally.

Instructions for students during internal as well as external examinations

  1. Students are expected to report (10 minutes before the start of the examination) at the examination venue.
  2. Students are not expected to talk or create any disturbance during the conduct of the examination. Not adhering to these instructions will be considered as malpractice and consequences as mentioned below shall apply.
  3. Students are expected to carry their own stationery. Borrowing of stationary during the examination is not allowed and will be considered as malpractice and consequences as mentioned below shall apply.
  4. Students are expected to check their pockets & pencil boxes for any extra academic related paper’s before entering the examination hall. Not adhering to these instructions will be considered as malpractice and consequences as mentioned below shall apply.
  5. Students who do not have any examination are not expected to come to school.
  6. Students who are free in between two examinations (on same day) are expected to be seated as instructed.
  7. Students are permitted to use their chromebooks in Senior library only during the transition time between 2 examinations.
  8. Students are not allowed to play or go to the grounds, after the examination is over.
  9. The students have to sit in the examination hall for at least 60 percent time of the total duration of the paper. For eg., if the duration of the paper is 1 hour, the students are expected to sit in the examination hall for at least 36 minutes. They can then leave the examination hall if they have finished writing the paper.
  10. Students are only allowed to bring transparent bottles, transparent pencil boxes and transparent writing pads. (applicable to all grades) Not adhering to these instructions shall be considered as malpractice and consequences as mentioned below shall apply.
  11. GDC covers are not allowed in the examination hall (Grade 9 to 12). Not adhering to these instructions will be considered as malpractice  and consequences as mentioned below shall apply.
  12. Students need to keep their bags outside the examination wing. They are not allowed to keep it outside their examination classrooms. Students pockets will be checked by invigilator / support staff before they enter the examination wing.
  13. Students cannot carry any material in the examination hall other than the required stationery. Not adhering to these instructions will be considered as malpractice and consequences as mentioned below shall apply.

Guidelines for malpractice during examination and its consequence:

Malpractice consists of those acts which undermine the integrity and validity of exams, the certification of qualifications and/or damage the authority of those responsible for conducting the assessment and certification. This refers to acts and omissions made by staff or students involved with the assessment process.

  1. If a student is found talking or disturbing the class during the time of exam
  • 1st instance – Warning will be given by the invigilator
  • 2nd instance – Minus 5 percentage will be deducted from the final marks of the subject (invigilator has to update on the paper and inform the Process Organizers about the same).
  • 3rd instance – students will have to leave the examination hall

2) Students will be marked failed for particular instance like

If a student is found with a chit / book during the exam, or has hidden it somewhere and tries to access

3) The above consequence of “Fail” will also be applied if the student is arguing with the invigilator on instructions or warning being given in the examination hall. This incident will be added as comment in the Term report.


  1. Minus marks for that particular students will be deducted form the overall grade of that subject.
  2. Parents will be informed by the POs regarding this malpractice and the consequence applied.
  3. Details to be mailed to the parents by the POs regarding the instance after verbal communication
  4. Subject teachers will have to mention the details in their comments and the same will be reflected in the reports.
  5. Procedure for the marks deduction from the overall grade of that particular subject will be done through nucleus by the POs.
  6. Malpractice instance to be mentioned in the Coordinator’s comments.
  7. POs have to fill the observation form for students who are involved in Malpractice.
  8. In Nucleus Reporting for that component Marks should be 0 instead of selecting dishonesty option.
  9. A meeting to be scheduled of the students involved in malpractice with SSVP / HOS.

Appendix 1:

Undertaking for NOT appearing for Retake examination.

I, the parent of ________________________, studying in ____________ do not want my ward to appear for the retake examination, even though the school recommends the same. I take complete responsibility for improving my ward’s learning, if h/she is promoted to the next grade.
Parent’s sign:________________
Student’s sign:_______________

Appendix 2

Undertaking to be signed after the Retake examination

I, the parent of ___________________, studying in ____________ take complete responsibility for improving my ward’s learning, if h/she is promoted to the next grade. His/her performance in the retake examination has not been satisfactory yet I believe that he/she will be be able to meet the requirements of the next grade.
Parent’s sign:________________
Student’s sign:_______________