School Jargon Buster
Schools often employ a range of acronyms and initialisms. We have put together some information on those you may encounter.
Achievement - Describes both attainment i.e. the level achieved and the progress you have made from a starting point.
AfL - Assessment for Learning - Assessment for Learning is the process of seeking and interpreting evidence for use by learners and their teachers to decide where the learners are in their learning, where they need to go and how best to get there
ASD - Autism Spectrum Disorder
AST - Advanced Skills Teacher
AT - Associate Teacher
ATL - Association of Teachers and Lecturers
Attainment - The actual level attained and/or results.
Attainment Targets - A general defined level of ability that a pupil is expected to achieve in every subject at each key stage in the National Curriculum
Blending - To draw individual sounds together to pronounce a word, e.g. f-l-a-p, blended together, reads flap
CiC -Children in Care
CLA / LAC - Children Looked After / Looked After Children
CME – Child missing from education
Core Subjects - English, maths and science: all pupils must study these subjects up to Key Stage 4
CPD - Continuing Professional Development
Creative Curriculum - There are numerous different interpretations exist for the concept ‘the creative curriculum’. In some schools it means topics or themes, in others it means asking children what they want to learn.
CSS - Children’s Support Service, this is the new name for Pupil Referral Unit (PRU)
DASCo – Dartford Area Schools Consortium. Local organisation which facilitates projects, briefings, courses and projects between schools.
DBS - Disclosure & Barring Service - DBS refers to the new agency created out of a merger between the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) and The Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA), its full title is The Disclosure and Barring Service. The checks and information provided will remain the same but will be branded DBS Checks.
DfE - Department for Education
Differentiation - a wide variety of teaching techniques and lesson adaptations that teachers use to pupils of differing abilities in the same class.
EAL - English as an additional language
EBD - Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties
EHC Plan - Educational Health Care Plan - An education, health and care plan is a document that says what support a child or young person who has special educational needs should have. "
EMTAS - Ethnic Minority & Traveller Achievement Service
ESOL - English for Speakers of Other Languages or English as a Second or Other Language - If English is not your main language you can take part in a course to help you improve your English. These courses are called ESOL.
EWO - Education Welfare Officer
EYFS – Early Years Foundation Stage. A framework of care and Education for children from birth to five years of age. This stage typically means Nursery and Reception Classes.
FFT - Fischer Family Trust - An assessment system
FLO - Family Liaison Officer
FSM - Free School Meals
FTE - Full Time Equivalent
G & T - Gifted and Talented - Gifted are those with high ability in one or more academic subject and the talented are hose with high ability in sport, music, visual or performing arts.
GPAS / SPAG – Grammar, Punctuation and Spelling
HLTA - Higher Level Teaching Assistant
HMI - Her Majesty’s Inspector of Schools
ICT - Information and Communication Technology
IEP - Individual Education Plan for SEN pupils
Inclusion - Removing barriers in learning so all pupils can participate at their own level.
INSET - In-Service Education and Training - Training for staff which takes place during the school year.
ISA - Independent Safeguarding Authority
ITT - Initial Teacher Training
IWB - Interactive Whiteboard
KMT - Kent and Medway Training
KS1 - Key Stage one – age 5-7 (Years 1 and 2)
KS2 - Key Stage two – age 7-11(Years 3,4, 5 and 6);
LA - Local Authority
LAA - Local Area Agreement
LAC - Looked After Children
LSA - Learning Support Assistant
MLD - Moderate Learning Difficulties
More able - Higher performing pupils than the majority of the class.
NAHT - National Association of Head Teachers
NASUWT - National Association of Schoolmasters/Union of Women Teachers
NC - National Curriculum
NEET - Not in Education, Employment or Training
NGA - National Governors’ Association
NLE - National Leader of Education
NOR - Number on Roll
NPQH - National Professional Qualification for Headship
NQT - Newly Qualified Teacher
NtG - Narrowing the Gap
NUT - National Union of Teachers
Ofqual - Office of Qualifications & Examinations Regulation
Ofsted - Office for Standards in Education
PE - Physical Education
Performance Table - Published by the DfE to compare schools' results.
Phonics - Phonics refers to a method for teaching speakers of English to read and write their language. It involves connecting the sounds of spoken English with letters or groups of letters (e.g that the sound /k/ can be represented by c, k, ck or ch spellings) and teaching them to blend the sounds of letters together to produce approximate pronunciations of unknown words. In this way, phonics enables people to use individual sounds to construct words. For example, when taught the sounds for the letters t, p, a and s, one can build up the words "tap", "pat", "pats", "taps" and "sat."
PPA - Planning, Preparation and Assessment time to which teachers are entitled. Progression - pupils develop academically and personally from year to year and from one key stage to the next in a way which builds on what has already been achieved."
PRU - Pupil Referral Unit
PSHE Personal Social Health and Economic education
PTA - Parent Teacher Association
QTS - Qualified Teacher Status
RE - Religious Education
SATs - Standard Attainment Tests/Tasks - National Curriculum Tests and Tasks which take place at the end of Key Stage 1 and at the end of Key Stage 2.
SCITT School - Centred Initial Teacher Training
SCR - Single Central Record - Schools must hold a single central record of all adults working with pupils. The records hold security and ID checks among other specific information.
SEAL - Social & Emotional Aspects of Learning
SEF – Self evaluation form
SEN - Special Educational Needs
SENCO - Special Educational Needs Coordinator
Setting - Putting pupils of similar ability together just for certain lessons. So, for example, it would be possible to be in a top set for French and a lower set for mathematics.
SIP - School Improvement Plan
SLE - Specialist Leader of Education
SLT - Senior Leadership Team
SMSC - Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural (development)
Streaming - Splitting pupils into several different hierarchical groups which would stay together for all lessons.
TA - Teaching Assistant
Transition - The movement of pupils from Key Stage to Key Stage or school to school and the procedures associated with it."
VCOP - vocabulary, connectives, openers and punctuation pupils are expected to use in their writing.
VLE - Virtual Learning Environment