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PostPosted: Wed Nov 23, 2011 11:23 am 
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Joined: Tue Aug 16, 2011 1:47 pm
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Hello residents of Essex County Council,

Are we lucky or unlucky to have a Super Selective on our doorstep? I find many travel to Southend and Westcliffe from Essex (Chelmsford and Colchester) where those students would have benefited going to a nearby Grammar and some parents do not put any other Grammar than the one nearby due to long commute. The students then go to a local comp, where their demands may not be met. Some comps are very good and do cater to their academically bright students, but others don't.
Should the Essex Grammars rethink their admissions criteria like the Southend Grammar schools where I heard that they have a separate cut out marks for their residents which is lower than for non residents?
It will be interesting to know your views.
Thank you.

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Last edited by ahap on Wed Nov 23, 2011 1:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 23, 2011 12:55 pm 
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Joined: Wed Sep 23, 2009 12:47 pm
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Location: Essex
The problem is that Essex is a large county with only a few GS. At least if the Grammars are supers they are accessible (in admission terms) to the whole county. It would be galling to live in an area that supposedly espoused Grammar Schools but to have entry barred by catchment area. That said, I would love to live in the catchment area of the Southend schools. :lol:


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 23, 2011 1:49 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 09, 2011 2:14 pm
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We are lucky but with this luck comes drawbacks. The selectives in Southend area are 'selective' to a certain extent. As far as I understand the system, it does not matter if you live in Southend Borough, your child must attend a school within the borough. There are many private schools within the southend borough and many children attend these schools with a view to gaining a place at the grammars even though they live outside the borough. These children have to score a benchmark score and provided they do they will gain a place up to an agreed amount...this varies but is around 115 places. Children who attend primaries outside the borough will therefore have to score significantly more to be in with a chance of gaining a place. You could have an example of two boys living in the same street, one attending an out of borough primary and one attending an in borough primary or private, the boy attending the out of borough primary may score higher than the in borough boy but the in borough boy would gain a place provided he reached the benchmark score. Sorry long winded explanation ! Anyway what i am trying to say is ......are the southend grammars truly selective ?


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 23, 2011 3:29 pm 
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I'm going to say that we are lucky to have these grammar schools within reasonable proximity to where we live. Thankfully, there is no catchment area for Colchester/Chelmsford grammars because, if there was, my son would probably not have got a place. It wouldn't bother me if they weren't super-selective schools either; it's the fact that places are open to students regardless of where they live that matters to me.

The good local comp schools have catchment areas so it makes it much harder to get a place. This is okay if you happen to live in that area but not so good if you don't. The alternative being, to be given a place at a school that you don't actually want but that, unfortunately, happens to be your local school.

I feel that many parents either have to put up with a school that they don't want or make serious financial sacrifices for a better education for their child because they just happen to live in the wrong place.

At least by having no catchment area, it's a fairer system for all. Just my opinion of course. :)


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 23, 2011 11:41 pm 
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I agreed with Moonlight. If it is going to be selective there should be no catchment area!


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2011 4:00 pm 
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Totally agree with the last post. How can a so called "selective school" have a catchment area? I thought "selective" meant that they would judge a child on their ability i.e the 11 plus exam? How can it be fair if a child who lives local can score say 40% and be offered a place and yet a child who scores say 70% in the same test does not? Plus can the local child then cope with the expected work load. It was part of the reason that we chose not to list either of these schools!
sorry rant over!


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2011 7:34 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 14, 2011 2:25 pm
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colchesterdad39 wrote:
I thought "selective" meant that they would judge a child on their ability


Selective - Having the function or power of selecting.
They are simply selecting through more than one criteria.


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2011 8:21 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 10, 2011 8:48 pm
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I appreciate they can use more than one criteria for selection. I guess everyones position will depend upon if they live in that borough or not.


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2011 8:26 pm 
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I have two sons at one of the Southend schools, it was our first choice as we liked it the best and thought it suited our sons. We are out of borough. I haven't heard of anyone from in borough not being able to cope.


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