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 Post subject: Advice needed
PostPosted: Sun Feb 26, 2012 12:47 am 
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Joined: Sun Feb 26, 2012 12:24 am
Posts: 25
I am new to the forum and would appreciate your advice.

My DS was moved up from Year 4 to Year 5 in the latter part of 2011 as his teachers felt that he was well ahead of his peers. His Year 5 teacher has said that he is in the "top 3" of his new Year 5 class. He has settled in very well and is getting on well with his new peers.

He was born in July 2003, which means that even in Year 4 he was one of the youngest in the class. Some of his new peers are >20 months older than him.

My wife and I are thinking about the options - we had always planned to apply for grammar schools (I am a KEFW old boy) and KES, but are not sure whether we should get him to attempt the tests a year early. He will only get one bite at the cherry from what I understand.

If he were to sit the 11+ in September, he will be 9 years and 2 months old, and he would be 9 1/2 years old at the KES test in Jan 2013.

Has anyone else been in a similar situation? Any advice would be much appreciated.


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 Post subject: Re: Advice needed
PostPosted: Sun Feb 26, 2012 8:06 am 
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Posts: 8113
Is he at a private school now? Unusual for state schools to move them up as it can cause problems at exam time

on the whole they tend to be better to go to senior school at the right time age wise as although they can cope academically often they don't have the social development to cope.

Have you had a look at the KES site - may say something about taking it early

ETA from KES site:

Quote:
For 11+ entry in September 2013 candidates should have been born between 1 September 2001 and 31 August 2002
For 13+ entry in September 2013 candidates should have been born between 1 September 1999 and 31 August 2000

Occasionally an application from a boy below the age limit may be accepted; in these cases, if a place is not offered, an application would not normally be accepted when he reaches the appropriate age. Boys who are above the age limit are only accepted for registration in exceptional circumstances.


Why not just wait until the right time?


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 Post subject: Re: Advice needed
PostPosted: Sun Feb 26, 2012 9:34 am 
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He is at a school that is now a state funded Islamic school - it was a private school until the end of 2011 but since the beginning of this year has become state funded. It is also a run through school so he could stay on there until the age of 16.

However, we don't feel the school he is currently at will capitalise on his academic strengths so we are keen to move him to either a grammar school or KES.

Now that he is a year ahead, not sure what we should do - he is certainly keen to stay a year ahead! He could go into Year 7 at his current school and sit the exams at the usual time - that is certainly an option - another option I have considered is to let him do the KES test in Jan 2013 and if he gets a place I would send him there. If he doesn't get a place, he could then do the KE grammar test in September 2013 for entry in 2014.


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 Post subject: Re: Advice needed
PostPosted: Sun Feb 26, 2012 9:51 am 
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depends to some extent also on the standard of the school he is at and the size etc ..

I went for a short period of time to a state primary (many decades ago) as I was staying with relatives. If I had been there any longer they would have put me up a year - it was simply that that school was not very academic and the one I came from was ahead of the game. It wouldn't have meant that I could cope ANYWHERE a year ahead. I eventually went to KEHS in the right year group and I was fine.


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 Post subject: Re: Advice needed
PostPosted: Sun Feb 26, 2012 11:14 am 
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Hmmmm, difficult one.

Your DS could end up really bored if he stays on at until the 'right' age.. Or he could end up 'lost' in KES if he starts earlier.

You must have tutored him yourself to get him a year ahead? Or is it the school? ( I know the school your DS is at, a nephew is there )


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 Post subject: Re: Advice needed
PostPosted: Sun Feb 26, 2012 11:43 am 
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@hermanmunster

I agree about the point about the academic standard of the school - that has concerned me as clearly at another school he may be considered to an "average" Year 5 student - we didn't send him to his current school based on its academic standards or its facilities - we sent him there primarily for its Islamic/moral ethos which he has benefited from greatly. I am worried about whether the school will be able to maintain that after it has become state funded as it will now be less selective and as parents are no longer paying for the education, I think that the same zeal amongst parents for the moral ethos of the school will be diluted.

My DS has natural ability - he is only recently being tutored and helped at home - the school felt that Y4 was not doing anything for him and they suggested a trial in Y5 - socially he has settled in well (I was worried about that) and academically he is in the "top 3". My sister is a 11+ tutor and has >15 years experience in the state primary sector - she thinks he is probably ahead of Y4 but may not be at the "top end" of Year 5, although he may well be in his current class.

Not sure what to do; will probably get him to sit the KES test and send him there if he gets in - otherwise can do the grammar school tests at the normal time (i.e. Sep 2013)

Thanks for the advice so far.


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 Post subject: Re: Advice needed
PostPosted: Sun Feb 26, 2012 3:19 pm 
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Ou DS was moved up in year 2, but September born, so only (max) 12m younger. He moved to a selective secondary school (at y7) a year early, and is now y9 (and still top end academically). It wasn't an easy decision as not many 2y schools will accept early applicants (he is one of 5 in his current year). No, he has not been as mature as some of his cohort, but he does not view that as having been a problem, and is quite clear that this was the correct thing to do (he would have been bored witless in the year below).
You will get differing opinions, inevitably, but so far, this is the right decision for our DS. I would suggest that you explore your options, as they might be limited, and it may influence your thought processes.


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 Post subject: Re: Advice needed
PostPosted: Sun Feb 26, 2012 3:27 pm 
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I was promoted and spent much of my Primary schooling with pupils up to 18 months older than me.
There was a rule about the age you had to be to sit the 11+ so I 'marked time' for a year. The school made sure I had a different teacher and they gave me lots of enrichment work.

I had a boyfriend who went to University when he was just 17 - he really didn't enjoy being younger than everyone else.


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 Post subject: Re: Advice needed
PostPosted: Sun Feb 26, 2012 4:47 pm 
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I already knew that KES allows boys to take the exam early, unlike the Grammars, but didnt realise that a failure would exclude him from trying again at he appropriate time.

If he is not at the top end of year 5 he may struggle at KES, assuming he gets a place as it is very academically rigorous. This combined with a likely reduced emotional and physical maturity would add to the issues (my son is age appropriate but has not hit puberty, and is truly in awe of how hairy some of his classmates are!).

If he does get a place at KES, would you leave him there and not bother with the Grammars a year later? All forthe sake of keeping a year ahead? If he fails KES early then you are narrowing his options at the appropriate time?


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 Post subject: Re: Advice needed
PostPosted: Sun Feb 26, 2012 5:53 pm 
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If he got into KES, we would leave him there and would therefore not bother with grammar school tests.

We could let him sit the tests at the normal time, but not sure what would happen at the end of Year 6 - do we just get him to stay at his current school in Year 7 while he does the entrance exams and then if successful he will start again in Year 7 the following year?

Decisions, decisions


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