Item Writing Framework for the Standards and Testing Agency (STA) from 2016.
Department for Education | Published October 3, 2015
The Standards and Testing Agency (STA) is an executive agency of the Department for Education (DfE).
The STA's main functions are to:
— develop high quality and rigorous DfE tests and assessments in line with Ministerial policy;
— undertake operational delivery of DfE tests and assessment (including printing, distribution, marking and data capture of tests as appropriate); and
— support schools, test centres and other stakeholders to deliver DfE tests and assessments.
STA is responsible for developing and delivering the national curriculum tests and assessments and ensuring their proper and safe production and administration. These assessments operate across Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) and key stages 1, 2 and 3 and are used by a wide range of maintained and other schools. STA is also responsible for developing and delivering Professional Skills Tests for prospective teachers.
Further information about STA and the national curriculum tests and assessments can be found at www.education.gov.uk/assessments.
Description of the contract.
STA wish to establish an Item Writing Framework of suitably experienced suppliers to develop items (test questions) and mark schemes for a range of DfE assessments. STA plan to establish the framework agreement by April 2016 and it will operate for a maximum of four years.
Currently, STA procures new items for key stage 1 and key stage 2 National Curriculum Tests (English reading; English grammar, punctuation and spelling; and mathematics at key stage 1. Those same subjects plus science at key stage 2), and items for the on-screen Professional Skills Tests for Prospective Teachers (for Literacy and Numeracy). As new items are required, suppliers on the framework will be invited to submit invitations to quote (ITQs) on a project by project basis to secure call-off contracts.
The total value of the work over the maximum term of 4 years is expected to be between 500 000 GBP and 5 000 000 GBP
Scheduled date for start of award procedures.
The framework should be established in April 2016, with the first ITQs for work being published in late summer.
The required services include (but are not limited to):
— Project Management,
— Management Information,
— Business Continuity,
— Financial Requirements,
— Quality Assurance,
— Exit and Transition.
— drafting items for DfE assessments. Each item or group of items is to be accompanied by an appropriate mark scheme,
— informally trialling items with appropriate age range / ability groups to derive qualitative data on item performance,
— reviewing, refining and amending the items as a result of informal trialling, expert review, or any other feedback provided by STA/DfE,
— identifying applicable metadata for each item as defined in the specific work requests,
— providing details of any third party copyright owners for any source material used within their items,
— small-scale printing,
— presentation of items in defined templates (DTP).
Indicative key dates.
4.10.2015 Prior Information Notice (PIN) published.
20.10.2015 Supplier briefing to be held. The briefing will provide the opportunity for all to input to the specification in an open and safe environment which will encourage innovative thinking based on outcomes rather than inputs, and enable dialogue with potential suppliers to capture innovative ideas, ask and answer questions.
27.10.2015 Contract will be advertised in OJEU and Contracts Finder.
11.12.2015 Response to Tender to be submitted to DfE.
22.3.2016 Notification of framework to suppliers.
26.4.2016 Contract(s) award(s) and signatures.
Disclaimers and conditions: No information contained on the DfE website, this notice or in any commu