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School Jargon Buster

School Jargon Buster


Below you will find some examples of words that are used in the school environment, both on this website, in the school and in other educational establishments with an explanation of what they mean.



 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

 APP - Assessing Pupils' Progress - APP is a structured approach to periodically assessing maths, science, reading, writing and speaking and listening skills.

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 - Children Looked After

 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)

 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

 EBacc - English Baccalaureate

 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

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 those with high ability in sport, music, visual or performing arts.

 GCSE - General Certificate of Secondary Education

 HLTA - Higher Level Teaching Assistant

 HMI - Her Majesty’s Inspector of Schools

 ICT - Information and Communication Technology

 IEP - Individual Education Plan for SEN pupils

 iGCSE - International General Certificate of Secondary Education

 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

 Key Stage one – age 5-7 (Years 1 and 2)

 Key Stage two – age 7-11(Years 3,4, 5 and 6);

 Key Stage three – age 11-14 (Years 7, 8 and 9);;

 Key Stage four – age 14-16 (Years 10 and 11)

Key Stage five – age 16-18 (Sixth form)

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

 NVQ - National Vocational Qualifications

 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

 RAISE Reporting and Analysis for Improvement through School Self-Evaluation

 RE - Religious Education

 SACREs - Standing Advisory Council for 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

 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