The 2019 assessment centre took place at UTC Reading, a technical college accredited as World Class in 2017. Students from 25 applicant primary and secondary schools UK wide, including our first school in Wales, worked together in groups of 9-12 to design a ‘Classroom for the future’ for the benefit of UTC Reading students.

The real-life project that took place in October 2019 required students to self allocate their team members into roles, including project manager, finance manager, resource manager and environmental officer. Support and advice was offered prior to the event and on the day from the school’s panel of consultants made up of corporate partner representatives, all experts in their field, who were available to help students with the design, resourcing and environmental aspects of their project, as well as supporting their final presentation, including use of IT, and support with creating a model of their classroom. A panel of UTC Reading students were also available to help the teams with market research.

On the day, teams were monitored and assessed by WCSQM’s shadow assessors. Students themselves, these assessors have previously taken part in the assessment centre for their own school, so their personal experience and WCSQM training meant they were best placed to shadow, evaluate and report on students’ progress and performance throughout the day, using the WCSQM assessment framework. WCSQM qualified assessors, almost all of whom are also alumni students that have previously completed the shadow assessor training, were on hand to support and oversee the shadow assessors.

The WCSQM 2019 team of assessors, including our first ever primary student assessors from Sneinton Primary School.

WCSQM is a charity created for and driven by World Class students. Our assessment process is very much student led and student centric, and this year we were once again amazed by the tenacity, drive and work-readiness exhibited by the students of these applicant schools. They were a credit to their schools and a testament to the truly World Class education provision they offer.

Miranda Perry, Director of WCSQM.

The assessment centre students from 25 accrediting primary and secondary schools UK wide.

This process was assessed to determine the World Class status of each participating school. Students were assessed using the World Class framework, which focuses on, amongst other things:

  • Leadership qualities
  • Collaborative and cooperative behaviour
  • Social awareness
  • Enthusiasm for learning
  • Empathy, understanding and compassion
  • Critical thinking skills and problem solving

Thank you for an amazing assessment day. Our students got so much from the experience and I found the talks incredibly inspiring. We have lots of plans for taking the World Class ethos we have experienced and making more of an explicit part of what we do here at Herts and Essex.

Demetris Christophy, The Hertfordshire & Essex High School and Science College

Many thanks for your continued support throughout the project. It’s been a really unique experience to collaborate with schools, consultants and students from all around the country. I definitely hope we can work together again in the future.

Jack Kennedy, assessment centre student from St Cuthbert’s Catholic High School

If your school would be interested in applying for accreditation for 2020/21 do get in touch.

2020 Accreditation process and pathways for successful applicant schools

WCSQM invites current holders of the Mark to nominate those schools that they believe would welcome and deserve an invitation to apply for the accreditation. WCSQM is also interested in schools whose students are unique and exceptional in terms of their skills, competencies, qualities and characteristics.

WCSQM draws up a limited shortlist for accreditation each year. To determine the shortlist, WCSQM evaluates the school against the following desktop criteria:

For secondary schools


  • The school’s latest Ofsted judgement is ‘outstanding’
  • The school is above the national average (for the most recent reporting year)
    • progress 8 score
    • attainment 8 score
    • grade 5 or above percentage in English & mathematics GCSE
    • grade 4 or above percentage in English & mathematics GCSE
    • progress 8 score for low-, middle- and high- attainers, compared to national progress 8 score for all
    • progress 8 score for girls and boys, compared to national progress 8 score for all
    • progress 8 score for pupils with English as an additional language


  • The school’s latest Ofsted judgement is at least ‘good’
  • The school is well above the national average (for the two most recent reporting years) for all of the sub-bullet points above.

For primary schools

  • The school’s latest Ofsted judgement is ‘outstanding’
  • Pupils’ progress in reading, writing and mathematics for the most recent reporting year is above average

For special schools

  • The school’s latest Ofsted judgement is ‘outstanding’

Exceptional circumstances

In exceptional circumstances, consideration will be given to schools that do not meet all the above criteria if, (for example) the school:

  • is a type of provider where progress and attainment 8 scores are not necessarily the most appropriate measures to assess the performance of pupils, in the case of, for example, a UTC
  • significantly out-performs other institutions in its region, particularly in terms of progress
  • bucks performance trends, particularly in terms of progress, in local authorities where performance overall is significantly below national averages
  • is non-selective in a selective region, and out performs its neighbouring selective institutions, particularly in terms of progress
  • has recently and dramatically improved, as evidenced through a recent ‘outstanding’ Ofsted judgement, having previously not been deemed as ‘outstanding’
  • is a small primary school where national progress data does not accurately represent the achievement of the pupils

Final stages of the assessment process

1. School Self-Audit

The school completes a self-audit with regard to:

  • the skills and competencies demonstrated by its student cohort to fulfil the mark’s requirements.
  • the skills, capacity, capabilities and resources the school can offer in response to potential international opportunities.

The self-audit is assessed according to achievement against the mark’s requirements.

If the school is unsuccessful at this stage, the school receives support from WCSQM to revise their audit, so they can resubmit. They can resubmit any time, and any number of times. WCSQM support the school in the audit’s revision until they are successful.

2. Assessment Centre

Three students from each applicant school attend the assessment centre event.

Each student is assessed on their performance at the assessment centre event against the required skills and competencies, receives an individual assessment and certificate of attendance.

Each school with students represented at the assessment centre event receives an assessment of the strengths and areas for development typical of their students.

If the school is unsuccessful at this stage, they receive support from WCSQM to re-prepare for the assessment centre, and can re-apply for consideration in the next assessment centre round.

3. Award Ceremony

Each school achieving the WCSQM attends award ceremony, receives a certificate verifying their achievement of the mark and a plaque.

4. Renewal of Accreditation

Each school (with the exception of early adopter schools) is required to renew their accreditation bi-annually. The renewal process consists of a reduced desktop exercise and self- audit.


[1] No schools nominated by a particular holder of the Mark, will then contribute to the delivery of the subsequent assessment process

Contact World Class Schools

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+44 (0)1727 576 047

Office hours 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday.