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 Post subject: Unfair Advantage?
PostPosted: Wed Sep 25, 2013 6:12 am 
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Joined: Wed Sep 25, 2013 6:08 am
Posts: 1
I was wondering if anyone felt there was an unfair advantage depending their exam time. My DS had his exam between 09:00 & 12:00. After his Maths paper he only had a 10 minute break before having to go back in and start the VR. During the break he was offered biscuits but no liquid refreshments.
As soon as he started the VR paper he felt exhausted and struggled to complete the paper. Having spoken to another parent, whose DC was tested at different times were told to bring a small lunch. It seems they had far more time to recover time between papers whilst they had their lunch. My DS was very upset as he believes the lack of a sufficient break and liquid refreshments hampered his performance. Just thought I would mention this in case anyone else had a similar experience.


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 Post subject: Re: Unfair Advantage?
PostPosted: Wed Sep 25, 2013 8:04 am 
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Joined: Mon Feb 14, 2011 2:25 pm
Posts: 198
Both my children had early sittings and no lunch breaks and were not adversely affected. Every child is different and perhaps your child would have preferred a longer break but it is impossible to tailor the exam process to each individual. Try not to fret :)


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 Post subject: Re: Unfair Advantage?
PostPosted: Wed Sep 25, 2013 11:35 am 
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Joined: Thu Aug 15, 2013 1:03 pm
Posts: 59
Yes try not to fret, but an interesting topic.

We were at WHSB on Saturday, dropped DS off at the door, had a nice breakfast at the café at Belfairs and chatted saying things like "he'll just be finishing the English paper now...come on Jim" nervously to each other.

It transpires that they didn't start till around 10.15 (30 minutes late) and we didn't pick him up till gone 1.30pm which was way outside of his ravenous appetite boundaries ! Not that he claimed it distracted him but it might well have done as per the first poster's comment.

What definitely did distract DS though was someone else's DS sitting right behind him mumbling out loud doing his working out during the VR....apparently he was told about 3 times to do it in his head. My DS ended up having to just guess an answer for the last 10 questions due to time pressure.

DS thinks he did ok so we hope the result is good enough, but I was concerned about the long drawn out process - from queuing to getting back in car was about 5 hours !


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 Post subject: Re: Unfair Advantage?
PostPosted: Wed Sep 25, 2013 12:50 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 06, 2013 3:04 pm
Posts: 23
My DS was also at WHSB for the morning sitting and as mentioned above did not start on time so finished late. My DS found this long and was very tired by the time we picked him up. In addition the boy behind him kept swinging his legs and kicking the back of my DS chair which he found annoying and distracting . I think a lot of things happen on exam day that we can't control we just hope hope our DC manage to do enough on the day.


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 Post subject: Re: Unfair Advantage?
PostPosted: Wed Sep 25, 2013 12:55 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jun 07, 2012 10:28 am
Posts: 438
Hello museword and welcome to the forum :D

Please excuse my rushed reply - I'll reply more fully, if I may when my internet access is better?

In general terms, children are given a 20 minute break between the Maths and VR exams, with a drink and a biscuit. Perhaps it may be helpful for you to chat to someone about this at CSSE and clarify what happened and if the normal procedure took place on Saturday at your son's examination centre? They may refer you directly to the school but they're a good place to start to discuss any concerns that you may have. :D Their number is:

01245 348257


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 Post subject: Re: Unfair Advantage?
PostPosted: Wed Sep 25, 2013 4:05 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 11:41 am
Posts: 4584
Location: Essex
From the mention of a second sitting, I am assuming the OP's DS was not at SHSB. DS2 sat the exam in the Language Block there and the boys were definitely given both biscuits and a drink in the break. The organisation there was very efficient, as far as we could tell - DS2's room having finished slightly before the rest, when I arrived exactly on time to collect him, he complained that he had already been paraded twice around the "luggage carousel" of the Main Hall :lol: .

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 Post subject: Re: Unfair Advantage?
PostPosted: Wed Sep 25, 2013 4:23 pm 
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Joined: Fri Apr 06, 2012 2:05 pm
Posts: 95
ToadMum wrote:
From the mention of a second sitting, I am assuming the OP's DS was not at SHSB. DS2 sat the exam in the Language Block there and the boys were definitely given both biscuits and a drink in the break. The organisation there was very efficient, as far as we could tell - DS2's room having finished slightly before the rest, when I arrived exactly on time to collect him, he complained that he had already been paraded twice around the "luggage carousel" of the Main Hall :lol: .


My DS also sat at SHSB. I thought the whole process was efficient and not as scary as we were anticipating. DS2 will most definitely be taking his at SHSB next year. I can't figure out how they managed to stagger the tests though. Just as well it wasn't me sitting the exam! :lol:


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 Post subject: Re: Unfair Advantage?
PostPosted: Wed Sep 25, 2013 9:14 pm 
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Joined: Tue Feb 28, 2012 11:42 pm
Posts: 115
My DD had an early sitting, which I personally like. They were given biscuits and drinks at the break, which was about 20mins. She made a point of refusing drinks in case she had to go out to the toilet. She mentioned that a number of children did leave the VR paper to go to the toilet, and there was some disturbance during the exam with one child vomiting and one having a nose bleed.


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 Post subject: Re: Unfair Advantage?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 28, 2013 4:44 pm 
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Joined: Sat Sep 28, 2013 10:21 am
Posts: 3
Has anyone complained about the delay at WHSB, or any other schools last Saturday? I contacted the CSSE and was told it was nothing to do with them and was not their problem. I then contacted WHSB direct and the LEA for good measure. The LEA responded but couldn't help as WHSB are grant maintained. I'm still waiting for a response from WHSB but quite honestly i'm really disappointed with the whole situation. If DS is now lucky enough to pass i'm not sure i'd want him going to WHSB


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 Post subject: Re: Unfair Advantage?
PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 4:13 pm 
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Joined: Thu Aug 15, 2013 1:03 pm
Posts: 59
Yes an explanation for the delay would have been nice - they knew how many were coming, must have known how long it would take to get everyone registered and so on....the queue was massive at 9am, let them in a bit earlier, like you say it could be an indicator of general disorganisation in a school. They even managed to misplace their G-H surnames sign !

Having been to both open events, one seemed a mess, and one seemed easily laid out and stress free. And that has played out in the 11plus days !

WHSB parents feel free to defend your school... :D


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