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My child was offered a place at a KE Grammar School for Sept 2009 Entry and:-
Poll ended at Sat Mar 07, 2009 7:44 pm
Attended a State Primary & had no extra Tuition at all 11%  11%  [ 1 ]
Attended a Prep School & had no other Tuition 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
Attended a State or Prep School with DIY Tutoring only 67%  67%  [ 6 ]
Attended a State or Prep School with DIY & KE Professional Tutoring 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
Attended a State or Prep School with KE Professional Tutoring only 11%  11%  [ 1 ]
Attended a State or Prep School with DIY & General Professional Tutoring 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
Attended a State or Prep School with General Professional Tutoring only 11%  11%  [ 1 ]
Total votes : 9
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 04, 2009 7:44 pm 
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I keen to try to understand the benefits of Professional Tuition vs DIY approaches for the KE Foundation Grammar exams and wondered if parents who were successful this year would be prepared to vote (confidentially) so that I can gauge what proportions used Professional Tutors.

If your child was successful please vote honestly and once only so we can try to gather a straw poll assessment of the ratios for parents using this site.

By KE Professional Tutoring I mean tests and techniques that were designed by the Tutor specifically for the KE Univ of Durham CEM exam - not just general NFER type VR and NVR techniques.

I will keep the poll open for only 3 days

Thanks for your help.

Ken


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 04, 2009 8:56 pm 
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Hi KenR

The understanding formed on this site is that KE Grammer test are supposedly tutor proof. Therefore I find the following comment contrasting this:

By KE Professional Tutoring I mean tests and techniques that were designed by the Tutor specifically for the KE Univ of Durham CEM exam.

Can you give us a flavour of the types of techniques that might me employed by professional tutuors/DIY tutors in preparation for the CEM type exams


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 04, 2009 10:02 pm 
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To Ken,

You didn't add the category: 'other- please state' or 'none of the above'? :?


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 04, 2009 10:43 pm 
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Ken - in my opinion there should be separate options for State and Prep. I am told that Prep schools spend a lot of time in the last two years coaching for the Independent and Grammar school exams. There is no way a state school would even dream of such preparation. So I do think that a different weighting should be applied for a prep school pupil having extra DIY or professional tuition to a state pupil.


Also, I know that there are people who have very naturally clever children who have received minimal tuition and were successfull. These kids are probably in a very low majority - I suspect probably about 5% of the total who took the exam. I think Grammar schools need to realise that these 'naturally clever' children are in a minority and they need to accept that other kids need to be tutored. I would take with a pinch of salt anyone who claims zero tuition and they still got a place.

I think that leaves the remaining 95% of successfull pupils who were tutored for the exam. I think this is fine....the tutoring simply raises the bar. In this sense, it is a fair system.

Where it is probably not fair is in the following situations :

- there are some parents (especially from ethnic backgrounds) who do not have a knowledge of the process and don't tutor their kids. Some very clever kids miss out.

- where someone cannot afford the fees to tutor their kids. Tuition costs range from 15 to 30 pounds a session. Some families cannot afford this every week. In this sense, the system is unfair I suppose. Again, some clever kids lose out.

- Clearly Prep school pupils are at an advantage over state pupils. Possibly more in-depth education and in-school coaching for the entrance exams.

- Some would argue if the method of selecting pupils is fair....i.e the exam method. Maybe this eliminates some pupils who suffer from exam nerves, or don't perform on the day.

Sorry - I've just realised how boring this message is....if anyone has actually read this far - sorry, I'm rambling.

PS : My kid? State pupil. And yes, I used a tutor at a tuition centre for group tuition. 1 session a week for about a year. 1.5 hours each session. 1 piece of homework from the centre to be done in the week.Also did some DIY tutoring a month before the exams (tested him in vocab, worked through test papers and corrections).


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 04, 2009 11:39 pm 
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Location: Not in a hole in the ground but in a land where once they dwelt-the Beormingas
Yes Za1, I can really see your point. Most children are 'tutored' in one way or another - specifically for the KE exam.

I do feel that the secretive element of CEM assessment allows KE to argue it's 'tutor proof' but in reality, it's simply not true. There are some really bright kids out there who don't have the opportunities available to raise their game.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 04, 2009 11:58 pm 
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My own gut feeling is that there are probably more bright kids who aren't entered for the exam (whether due to parental principles, lack of awareness, lack of confidence, etc.) than bright kids who are thrown into it without preparation.

Mike


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 12:11 am 
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Just to let you know that My daughter successfully gained a place a KE Handsworth girls. No extra tuition, just worked through schoolwork together and used internet to find extra bits. It was very hard but it has shown me that there really is no need for tuition. I am now aware of what my daughter is capable of ( by the way she was not the brightest pupil in her class ). She gained level 5 in year 5 so thought she had a good a chance as any. Pretty much spent the summer holidays going over work. I also found that I probably spent more time letting my daughter know how important it was to try her best rather than try to 'pass'. Unfortunately there isn't technically a pass mark but on the other hand it means that they have to perform above average. To me it also meant that if she did succeed she would be a pretty much the same level as all entrants. I personally feel now that a tutor is called upon to 'gaurantee' a place for the child. Doesn't always work I've found!.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 3:05 am 
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Ken..you have not included ' home schooled ' and just DIY tutored.

Quizzer


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 6:29 am 
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Interesting poll. We have DIY'd for our daughters - daughter number 1 decided that she wanted to sit the 2007 test in the september, so we had about 7 weeks to prepare, daughter number 2 made up her mind about the 2008 in the summer holidays, so we had a couple more months to play with.

My son will be sitting the test this november, and we've started DIY'ing already!!

I think that some familiarisation with question types etc is quite important and helps remove some of the fear of 'the unknown' for the children.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2009 8:56 am 
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Hi All

Thanks for the input and feedback. I'll try to answer the various points:-

Quote:
Can you give us a flavour of the types of techniques that might me employed by professional tutuors/DIY tutors in preparation for the CEM type exams


This would involve techniques such as proof reading (although there was no proof reading in this years exam as it happens) and also extensive Synonyms etc. What I was trying to differentiate was tutors who specifically use material designed to help in the KE CEM exam compared to some general group providers who would just do general NFER type material.



Quote:
You didn't add the category: 'other- please state' or 'none of the above'?


Unfortunately the poll mechanism is not that sophisticated and does allow extra free text - I'll try to add a None of the above

Quote:
Ken - in my opinion there should be separate options for State and Prep. I am told that Prep schools spend a lot of time in the last two years coaching for the Independent and Grammar school exams. There is no way a state school would even dream of such preparation. So I do think that a different weighting should be applied for a prep school pupil having extra DIY or professional tuition to a state pupil.


I think you are overstating how much time Independent Prep schools spend on Study Skills - both of my two children went to Prep school in Edgbaston (different schools as it happens). The Study Skills work that they did was only limited to a couple of periods a week only and also geared more towards the KES/KEHS exams rather than the KE CEM. I would probably classify this as general 11+ tutoring rather than KE specific.

The poll was not attempting to be an accurate statistical survey but simply to give readers a general indication of what successful parents in the B/Ham/West Midlans area (who use this forum) did this year.

Quote:
The understanding formed on this site is that KE Grammer test are supposedly tutor proof.


This is Univ of Durham PR and marketing material - it's true it is more difficult to prepare for KE CEM exams, but Tutor Proof - I certainly don't think so!

If the precise category isn't available just choose the closest category.

The results so far are interesting, I was expecting more professionally tutored children

Thans for the help

Ken


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