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PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2011 4:12 am 
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Hi all!

I have a 'strange' query as it concerns the amount of tutoring that some children get outside their top grammars ( FW) :shock: to achieve their exceptional results a A-level.

My DD, now at university, used to be at Sutton girls and she NEVER had any private tutor during all her years at her beloved school. She did encounter some difficulties in her further maths AS (there is a famously hard module) but the teachers at school were always very helpful and if stuck, she could go and see them so that they would give her some explanation.. and she got an A* in that AS despite all her desperation at times...

However, I heard recently that at FW, many pupils in the sixth form have tutors outside school. :shock: (I don't know yet exactly for CH, but assume that if this is the case at FW, it might well be the same at CH) Does this explain the excellent results of that school? It would be a bit like our local primary which is well placed in the league table thanks to the heavy tutoring some children get in year 5 till mid-year 6!

My DD is adamant it is not worth to consider a grammar which is not able to take care properly of its own pupils and where many parents feel obliged to pay some tutors to help the children to succeed.

Did some parents encounter this problem at other grammars in the West Midlands?


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2011 12:56 am 
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Location: Not in a hole in the ground but in a land where once they dwelt-the Beormingas
I don't think that is the case, Jane Eyre. Most children at A'level are surely independent by that stage. Going by my limited and raw experience of secondary school-life, dcs independently manage their homework and revision from Y7.

If children are using tutors, it's probably only a handful and for a variety of reasons...you can get some dire teachers at grammar schools. Afterall, from a teaching perspective, behaviour management is probably much easier at a grammar school than at a comprehensive.

Last year, KECHB's results weren't particularly awe-inspiring as they've been in the past. Although, this year, they've been quite impressive...seems to me, as a result of conscious staff effort rather than pupils engaging in extra tuition.



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PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2011 8:48 am 
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Thanks for your answer DIYMum!!!

DIY Mum wrote:
you can get some dire teachers at grammar schools. Afterall, from a teaching perspective, behaviour management is probably much easier at a grammar school than at a comprehensive.


This sentence made me smile.. because recently, a mum told me that the good teachers are at our local comprehensive while the 'bad' ones are at BV which is the grammar school in our local area!!!

And I have to say that during the open evening at our local comprehensive last week, I had a chat with the head of French and I have been REALLY amazed by her level. It was as if she was as fluent as me in French... except that I took the bad habit of mixing French and English because of all the years I have spent in the UK. I do far too much 'code switching' with mny children at home :( . For example, I would say 'gap year' and not 'une annee sabbatique'. So her French was in a way purer than mine as she was not mixing up languages. Ok, her accent was maybe not as perfect as a French speaking person (though her 'r' were well pronounced) but I really felt that she had an very vast vocabulary and an excellent level in grammar.
However, in a grammar school I won't named, I met a head of French whose French was really ... cough...cough... surprising low for the school she's teaching in. :evil:

Now, my curiosity is aroused!! Did some parents (who know vey well the stuff taught is some departements (being fro example a teacher or being a profesionnal in that field) have been disappointed by the level of some teachers while visiting schools, especially grammar ones??


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2011 12:18 pm 
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Location: Not in a hole in the ground but in a land where once they dwelt-the Beormingas
The majority of KE staff especially at KECHB are pretty top notch: been there for donkey's years, hence the low staff turnover.

But in some of the grammer schools, particularly those with a high staff turnover (which I've seen from my extended family's experience), you won't get quality teaching within some of the departments. The kids being bright & industrious tend to rely on their own 'inner pockets' to secure outstanding results.


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2011 9:52 pm 
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Joined: Mon Mar 14, 2011 12:54 pm
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I went to a very high achieving independent school back in the day, but I had a tutor for my A Level physics as the teacher I had was rubbish. She didn't know the curriculum properly and would put formulae up on the board and say 'Is that right?' with a puzzled expression on her face. All schools can still have lousy teachers lurking in the woodwork I reckon.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 20, 2011 10:43 am 
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DIY Mum wrote:
The kids being bright & industrious tend to rely on their own 'inner pockets' to secure outstanding results.

Thanks DIY Mum for your comment...
Yes, this is what I have heard. In case os a bad teachers , kids in grammar schools will work on their own, trying to compensate what the teacher is not doing... :(
Well, I'll keep my sleeves rolled up for many more years ahead then, whether my DS enters a grammar or a comprehensive :shock: ... Thanks God, I love books and studying!!!

Turtlegirl wrote:
I went to a very high achieving independent school back in the day, but I had a tutor for my A Level physics as the teacher I had was rubbish. She didn't know the curriculum properly and would put formulae up on the board and say 'Is that right?' with a puzzled expression on her face. All schools can still have lousy teachers lurking in the woodwork I reckon.


What a pity! When parents are paying very high achieving independent school , they would expect the teachers to be top-notch, due to the hole in their pockets!!!
Thanks for your contribution , turtlegirl :wink:


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