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PostPosted: Tue Mar 17, 2015 8:25 pm 
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Hi all,

My DS1 is in year 5 and we're living outside the new Adams catchment area. We have been intending to apply to Adams all along and throughout school he's been told by the teachers he's very bright etc. However, we've got a tutor now and it seems he is very behind on his prep (especially in English) and I am having a major panic!! I should say that in his year 5 CATS (October) he scored on the 97-99th centiles for all subjects, so it has come as a real shock to me that he seems to be so far behind.

So, I have some questions for those who have been there:

1. Are there are any decent crammer courses over Easter that people can recommend?

2. Can someone help me understand the scoring please? The scores seems very, very high for Adams but of course none of the prep we are doing helps me to understand what DS might actually score in the test.

3. I have also noticed that people have been posting their scores for Adams. I thought Adams didn't publish scores. Is that right?

I am sure I will have loads of questions and I apologise in advance if I appear somewhat scatty. I am seriously stressed about this whole process already!

Thanks in advance


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 18, 2015 1:09 pm 
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Anyone???


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 18, 2015 2:57 pm 
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tvgirl wrote:
Hi all,

My DS1 is in year 5 and we're living outside the new Adams catchment area. We have been intending to apply to Adams all along and throughout school he's been told by the teachers he's very bright etc. However, we've got a tutor now and it seems he is very behind on his prep (especially in English) and I am having a major panic!! I should say that in his year 5 CATS (October) he scored on the 97-99th centiles for all subjects, so it has come as a real shock to me that he seems to be so far behind.

So, I have some questions for those who have been there:

1. Are there are any decent crammer courses over Easter that people can recommend?



I am not sure about local courses - maybe someone in the area has some more info specifically - there are also these links:
    • Institutional Course details can be found here

    • Intensive Holiday Courses can be found here

Quote:

2. Can someone help me understand the scoring please? The scores seems very, very high for Adams but of course none of the prep we are doing helps me to understand what DS might actually score in the test.

3. I have also noticed that people have been posting their scores for Adams. I thought Adams didn't publish scores. Is that right?


All exam scores are relative, in one area 200 might be the top or bottom of the range.
The pupils take the exam in September and are told the score - they then have to fill in the CAF form. The problem is that people don't know the cut off for that particular year[/quote]
Quote:

I am sure I will have loads of questions and I apologise in advance if I appear somewhat scatty. I am seriously stressed about this whole process already!

Thanks in advance


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 18, 2015 3:04 pm 
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hermanmunster wrote:
All exam scores are relative, in one area 200 might be the top or bottom of the range.
The pupils take the exam in September and are told the score - they then have to fill in the CAF form. The problem is that people don't know the cut off for that particular year


So does that mean the Adams scores which I see are in the 300's are not in way relevant to the scores from other schools which I see mentioned as being in the 200's? In other words if my DS took the test in different areas he'd likely get in the 300's in one (we hope!!!) and in the 200's in another?

I'm seriously confused!

TIA


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 18, 2015 3:06 pm 
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Oh, and he has to take the test on 1 July - hence the serious panic!! :shock: :shock: :shock:


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 18, 2015 3:18 pm 
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that's right, the Birmingham / sutton scores you see in this thread viewtopic.php?f=11&t=41365 are different from the Wolverhampton / Adams scores - the exams are on different days and the scores can;t be compared.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 18, 2015 4:36 pm 
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The scores for Newport and Wolves are different to Birmingham. For Adams the score is out of 420+, it is less for Birminham hence the different range in scores.

You get a letter in October which gives you your standardised score (based on DOB) and advises whether you should apply or not. This is before you fill in the council preference form.

We did not use a tutor but did do quite a few practice papers which highlighted that technique was the biggest problem. Worked on this and it seemed to help.

Good luck!


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 18, 2015 5:28 pm 
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Also just be aware that Adams' is probably bringing in a catchment area this year so the entrance scores will vary depending on where you live.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 18, 2015 5:31 pm 
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Wolves mum wrote:
Also just be aware that Adams' is probably bringing in a catchment area this year so the entrance scores will vary depending on where you live.


I know! Just what I need. Not sure my blood pressure is going to be able to take this for another year! Still at least DS1 seems to be enjoying the prep so far!!


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 18, 2015 5:48 pm 
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Hi tvgirl,

The scores for Adams' (as well as other schools in the Walsall consortium) are calculated completely differently to the Birmingham grammars and, as I understand it, you could very roughly compare the two by dividing the Adams' score by 3 and the Birmingham schools' by 2 and comparing the results, which actually means that it is a lot easier to get into Adams'! I think it makes sense as there aren't as many children as in Brum, thus less competition. I hope that this is reassuring for you.
The test takes place on July 1, and the school writes to the parents in mid-September with the standardised scores obtained by their children and the details of the lowest score offered the previous year on the national offer day (I think). The letter also either strongly encourages to apply for a place by putting it on the local authority form in October or not, but this letter does not guarantee a place in itself. Of course, for example, if your son scores 360 with the last in the year before scoring 314 (for 2014/15), you could be pretty confident of success, but if the score is borderline, you would have to wait until the offer day or later as the scores can go up as well as down. They went up this year. I am not sure what the lowest score was on the offer day, only know that we had an offer at 323, and another family did not at 319, so it could be anywhere between 320 and 322. However, do not despair if your score is close, because if another child with higher scores than yours decides not to take up his place, the child with the highest score who was turned down gets an offer instead, and so on, so it is possible for 319 to get an offer still.
I hope this clarifies the system somewhat.
Regarding the preparation, we did not have a tutor, just practiced at home, not very vigorously. I do not think that my DS would have had a chance to get into GS in Birmingham, it appears to be a lot more competitive.
Good luck! :)


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