Reports serve as an important and official communication between teachers and parents. Not only do they provide key information about a pupil’s level of progress in each of their chosen subjects, they are also sufficiently regular to ensure that all progress, developments and potential obstacles are properly identified and acknowledged.


Pupils in most year groups will receive six reports during each school year, roughly one every six weeks, and they consist of two types: interim reports, which are purely a set of grades; and full reports which contain a set of grades with accompanying comments about the pupil’s performance.

In our reports, pupils are graded in terms of their attainment and their overall effort, as we recognise that high levels of effort will positively influence attainment in the long run. Pupils who receive strong effort grades embody the Wellington values and are far more likely to achieve outstanding academic success as they progress.

In terms of attainment, pupils in the Prep and Senior Schools are given a ‘current attainment track’ and a ‘target attainment track’. This system measures the pupil’s current level of attainment based on their performance in assignments, tests and so on; while also showing them what the teacher believes they can achieve with sufficient ‘stretch’, effort and dedication.

It is important to reiterate that a pupil’s attainment tracks are based on the teacher’s long-term judgement of them, built up using a wide range of measurements and data points: one bad test isn’t going to knock them down one or several tracks. Rather, the tracks are designed to accurately measure a pupil’s academic trajectory and give them, and their parents, a clear picture of what they can reasonably expect to achieve at the IGCSE and IB levels.


In the Prep and Senior Schools, we use our Wellington grades from 1 to 7 to report on attainment. 7 is the highest grade while 1 is the lowest. These broadly equate to outcomes in the IB diploma, our final qualification at the end of Year 13. The IB subjects are also graded from 7 down to 1.

Reports contain two numbered grades:

  • Current attainment track – The pupil’s current academic progress. It is expressed in terms of what the pupil is likely to achieve, given this progress.
  • Target attainment track – What the teacher thinks the pupil could be achieving with continued or greater effort and focus.

The Wellington grades can be compared with IGCSE grades:

Current Attainment Track Descriptor Likely outcome
old new
7 Excellent attainment for a candidate undertaking this course. Continually achieving at or close to full marks in tests and prep assignments. Handles extension material with relative ease. A* 9 7
6 Very high level of,attainment. Normally achieving very high marks in tests and prep assignments.,Normally copes with extension material. A/A* 8 6
5 A solid level of attainment: most content is understood, and questions are answered correctly the majority of the time. A 7 5
4 Reasonable level of understanding,of the material. May find certain concepts challenging, but can grasp the,majority of the detail from the course. B 6 4
3 This pupil can access some of the course content, but finds many of the harder ideas difficult. C 5 3
2 Regularly struggles with the concepts and content at this level, and needs very careful support and scaffolding to access new ideas. D 4/3 2
1 Shows little understanding of the work required at this level. Would be likely to fail this course. This grade raises questions about the suitability of this pupil studying this course at Wellington. E-G 2/1 1

The finer grading around A and A* grades is useful for us, as that is what we expect Wellingtonions to achieve. This year, two thirds of all Wellington College International Shanghai pupils achieved A*s or As at IGCSE. A grade of 3 or below is a rarity for Wellington College pupils.

At every stage, teachers report which track they believe a pupil is currently on. For example, a pupil attaining a 4 track would go on to achieve a B grade at IGCSE. Different subject teachers will make their judgements based on different information, but over time they should be able to identify (with reasonable accuracy) the track that the pupil is working on.

The growth chart indicates that pupils working their way through the school continually at a Wellington 5 track would be making progress (as measured vertically), even though their track number does not change. A pupil on a 5 track at the end of Year 8 would know more and be more capable than a pupil on a 5 track at the beginning of Year 8. A pupil was not making progress may slip from a 5 track to a 4 track.

Reporting in this way will be influenced by many factors, but no one factor will dominate the resultant grade. In other words, a teacher may use the latest test result to confirm or change their view of a pupil’s progress, but it won’t be the sole factor used to determine the pupil’s overall grade.

The target attainment track is set by the teacher to help to indicate the track on which the pupil could be achieving with a suitable amount of ‘stretch’. Sometimes the pupil has already incorporated a great deal of effort and stretch into their performance, and in this case their current attainment track might match their target attainment track.


A pupil’s level of effort is reported on a worded scale, and the descriptors below indicate some of the qualities that a teacher is looking for when awarding the different grades:

Grade Descriptor
Exceptional Exceptional and sustained,effort – not a grade given lightly. The pupil goes above and beyond,reasonable expectation in all areas of a subject, virtually all of the time:,an academic leader in this subject. The award of this grade will be in,agreement with the Head of School.
Excellent Excellent effort. The pupil consistently applies a very high degree of effort across virtually all areas.
An exemplary attitude towards study, and might lead to above-target outcomes in this subject.
Good Good effort. This pupil works solidly and in a focused way, both in the classroom and for prep. This
level of effort would most likely lead to this pupil achieving their target grade.
Satisfactory Satisfactory effort. A reasonable degree of effort is applied much of the time, however, extra effort
could still lead to improved attainment.
Deficient Deficient effort. An early warning that effort is insufficient in this subject. Unless renewed focus is
given in this subject, this would lead to an “Improvement needed” grade in the next report.
Improvement needed Improvement seriously needed. Effort is below the level that any Wellington pupil should be applying. Urgent change needed. This low level of effort will be negatively affecting attainment.
Unacceptable Unacceptable effort in this subject. Poor attitude is having a serious impact on achievement, and probably a negative impact upon others. This would lead to attainment grades way below target. This grade raises the question of whether this pupil should be studying this course at Wellington.





CCA Programme