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PostPosted: Fri Jan 23, 2009 7:36 pm 
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Please note that, due to the changes to the Bucks 11+ test and the appeals process in 2013, a number of posts have been deleted from this thread because they no longer apply. Sally-Anne, December 2012.

If you have heard a "popular myth" about the Bucks 11+, please post it here with the correct facts.

Likewise, if you hear something that you feel simply cannot be true, ask away on here and hopefully we will be able to put your mind at rest.

I suggest that we also post myths about the Bucks appeal process here, because if we discuss those on the Appeals Section, it may cause confusion for people in areas where the system differs.

Sally-Anne


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 23, 2009 11:20 pm 
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Well, for starters there's the one about OOC candidates needing to score 130 or more to qualify!

Fact - until the system was changed five years ago VRT score was used as an oversubscription criterion. However, there was never actually a fixed score, spare places were allocated starting from the highest score and working down. Anyone scoring 130+ stood a good chance, of course, but there was no guarantee, whilst at the same time many candidates with lower scores would have been allocated places. It all depended (as now) on the number of places compared to the number of qualified applicants.

Now, of course, distance has replaced score as the main oversubscription factor.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 24, 2009 10:47 pm 
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Two I heard this year during our headmasters talk ....

High scores needed
Some GS in Bucks select by highest score and for one Bucks GS you need 133+. to have a chance of a place.

CAF order
question by a parent - wanted to put the following on their CAF
Grammar School A - 1st choice (not catchment and often oversubscribed)
Grammar school B - 2nd choice (catchment school)
Upper School - 3rd choice (which is often oversubscribed)

Head told them to put:
GS A - 1st choice
Upper school - 2nd choice
GS B - 3rd choice.

The reason given by the Head was that:
If child qualified, child would be offered one of the GS's and the upper school listed would be ignored by the LEA even though it was put 2nd.
If child didn't qualify then they would have more chance of the upper school if it was listed 2nd rather than 3rd.

This arose some debate (!) although interestingly another parent who has some role in the allocations as part of their work then said that the way the computer system works, it is true that you have more chance if the upper school was listed 2nd rather than 3rd. Even more debate arose!


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 25, 2009 4:34 pm 
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Greta2 wrote:
Two I heard this year during our headmasters talk ....

High scores needed
Some GS in Bucks select by highest score and for one Bucks GS you need 133+. to have a chance of a place.

I sincerely hope that it wasn't the Head who said that! It is a MYTH, and still comes up because until around 5 years ago, places were indeed allocated according to scores.

The FACT is that places are now allocated according to catchment, sibling priority and distance from school gates. Provided the 11+ score is 121 or higher, or a Selection appeal is successful on a lower score, the score is completely irrelevant in the school allocations process.

Greta2 wrote:
CAF order
question by a parent - wanted to put the following on their CAF
Grammar School A - 1st choice (not catchment and often oversubscribed)
Grammar school B - 2nd choice (catchment school)
Upper School - 3rd choice (which is often oversubscribed)

Head told them to put:
GS A - 1st choice
Upper school - 2nd choice
GS B - 3rd choice.

The reason given by the Head was that:
If child qualified, child would be offered one of the GS's and the upper school listed would be ignored by the LEA even though it was put 2nd.
If child didn't qualify then they would have more chance of the upper school if it was listed 2nd rather than 3rd.

This arose some debate (!) although interestingly another parent who has some role in the allocations as part of their work then said that the way the computer system works, it is true that you have more chance if the upper school was listed 2nd rather than 3rd. Even more debate arose!

My goodness - this is beyond being a myth. It is seriously dangerous rubbish! :shock:

These quotes are from the answers to FAQs about the 11+ that Bucks issue to Heads:

Quote:
Your child can only be offered a grammar school place if he or she has qualified. If two schools on your preference list can offer a place then the LA will use the order you ranked the schools to decide which school to offer, offering the highest preference possible.

The bold red type is mine.

Quote:
Each school preference will be treated as if it were a separate application. The schools do not know about your preference ranking and will not be told before allocations are made. You do not affect your chances of getting a school by where you place it on your list. Put the schools in your real order of preference!

The bold black type is Bucks CC's own.

If a child has qualified for GS then Bucks will allocate their first preference GS if possible. However, if that were not possible (in the case of the over-subscribed GS), they will then allocate the next school on the CAF. In the case Greta quotes it would be the Upper School - on the basis that it is the parents' next preference! The "computer" cannot be expected to understand that the parents' real preference is actually a GS - it just assumes that they prefer the Upper to the GS in 3rd place!

The parents would then have to throw themselves on the mercy of Admissions to sort out the mess on March 2nd. However, if the GS placed 3rd was also over-subscribed, the parents would only have the options of going on to the waiting list or going to a Transfer Appeal.

If the child failed to qualify for a GS, the grammars are crossed off the list by Admissions (the computer again), and the Upper school placed highest on the CAF automatically becomes the first preference school.

So, the correct order is:

1. Grammar School A - 1st choice (not catchment and often oversubscribed)
2. Grammar school B - 2nd choice (catchment school)
3. Upper School - 3rd choice (which is often oversubscribed)

The parent was right and the Head was wrong.

Greta, if you know this parent, I suggest that you check what they finally put on the CAF. If they took the Head's advice and the child has qualified, get them to ring Bucks CC before March 2nd to explain that they have (as Bucks will see pretty darn obviously) been wrongly advised by the Head.

It makes me so cross when Heads cannot make the effort to understand the system. The advice is provided by Bucks and is made as clear as is humanly possible via an excellent Powerpoint presentation and associated FAQs. All the Heads have to do is read it. :evil:


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 21, 2010 6:01 pm 
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Just heard this one from a neighbour...from next year the sibling link will no longer be one of the admission criteria in Bucks schools.

No idea at all where this came from, but as usual I suspect it's just the usual rumour mill with nobody actually bothering to check the facts on the Bucks CC website... :roll:

I would be interested to know whether anyone else has heard it, though.

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 21, 2010 6:08 pm 
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I really wonder where these things come from?

The facts can be checked by downloading the PDF "Proposed arrangements for school admission - cabinet report" here:
http://www.buckscc.gov.uk/bcc/schools/a ... _2011.page?

There is no change to the sibling arrangements for 2011.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 21, 2010 6:31 pm 
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Sally-Anne wrote:
I really wonder where these things come from?


So do I - I think I know which school it originated from though so will do my best to squash it in the coming week! :wink:

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2010 4:06 pm 
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Is anyone able to lay this one to rest - one way or another?

Are the scores standardised by age only, or is there also some standardisation by gender?

Many people insist that boys can qualify with a lower raw score - but the admissions guide only states that the standardisation process takes into account a childs age.

Thanks


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2010 4:08 pm 
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Both boy's and girls and standardised with each other and it's simply on age and score's, nothing to do with gender whatsoever :)


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 05, 2010 3:05 pm 
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A legend question.

Did children from village schools used to benefit from needing a lower qualifying mark to get into a GS?

I'm assuming this not the case now but wonder if it ever was. I have a friend whose DD will be applying for 2012 and rather smugly keeps telling me how living in a north Bucks village will advantage her DD due to needing a lower pass mark.


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