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 Post subject: Secondary allocations
PostPosted: Tue Mar 14, 2006 5:18 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 7:48 pm
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Will be applying for a secondary place this year for 2007. My child would like to try for a selective place (Southend being her choice even though it's the furthest away). Was advised by the grammar to put them first but to make sure the catchment schol is on the list. I now find out from county that catchments are no more and that they are priority admission areas, all should be well then I thought, but no - if you live on the edge of the priority admission area you may not be alloctaed a place, in which case they will allocate you the next nearest available school, which according to them would be a school 11 miles away (the only school with spaces) if the same demand happens next year. Don't worry they said we sort out transport. Does this really happen, has anyone got experience of this system? What schools do you put then? Thanks in advance.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 14, 2006 5:40 pm 
Boo wrote:
Will be applying for a secondary place this year for 2007. My child would like to try for a selective place (Southend being her choice even though it's the furthest away). Was advised by the grammar to put them first but to make sure the catchment schol is on the list. I now find out from county that catchments are no more and that they are priority admission areas, all should be well then I thought, but no - if you live on the edge of the priority admission area you may not be alloctaed a place, in which case they will allocate you the next nearest available school, which according to them would be a school 11 miles away (the only school with spaces) if the same demand happens next year. Don't worry they said we sort out transport. Does this really happen, has anyone got experience of this system? What schools do you put then? Thanks in advance.


I would put the grammar first as suggested and then the comp that you want (regardless of whether you are just outside or not). In terms of getting Southend, having gone through it this year with my daughter I cannot stress enough how important the VR test is. She needs to do well in that paper - it is 50% of the overall mark.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Mar 14, 2006 7:38 pm 
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Thanks guest, how did your daughter get on? did you get first choice? Were you in catchment? Did you put a comp down, were you in the prority admissions area? Thanks Boo


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 Post subject: Allocations
PostPosted: Tue Mar 14, 2006 8:27 pm 
Boo,

Hope you dont mind me asking but which is your "on the edge of catchment school" and roughly how far are you from it?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Mar 14, 2006 8:40 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 7:48 pm
Posts: 32
Essex girl

Mayflower is the priority admissions school, as the crow flies about 2.8 miles, by road 3.2. Can't believe we may not get it but apparently siblings first regardless of where they live then remaining applications and if too many then nearest first. School in Chelmsford that always has spaces is the one that has had some negative press lately and high staff turnover. Apparently mayflower has a high number of children from basildon & wickford who have siblings.


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 Post subject: Allocations
PostPosted: Wed Mar 15, 2006 10:23 am 
Yes, you are absolutely right about Mayflower. This year there were children attending local primary schools and who lived within reasonable walking distance who did not get in. They have only recently started the sibling rule and so they do tend to get more children from outside catchment than one would hope.

Have you looked at Bromfords, in Wickford. Their grades seem to be improving year on year but I don't know the details.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Mar 15, 2006 11:45 am 
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Thanks Essex Girl, do you know what happened to those not offered a place? Have looked at the results for other local schools and some seem to be better tham Mayflower but it's the ethos of the school that is important, I guess I'll have to do the open days. I didn't realise siblings took priority, is this just Mayflower or are more schools doing this? When the booklet for admissions for Sep 2007 is published can we expect more changes? Any of your thoughts on the local secondary schools would be welcome you seem to have a lot of knowledge. Thanks


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Mar 15, 2006 12:47 pm 
Boo wrote:
Thanks guest, how did your daughter get on? did you get first choice? Were you in catchment? Did you put a comp down, were you in the prority admissions area? Thanks Boo



My daughter was offered a place at Chelmsford County High (still can't believe it!) but we put down CCHSG first followed by Westcliff then Southend (mainly last because it is the furthest from us but preferred it in terms of the headmaster to Westcliff!). Our 4th choice (which was a comp) was not in our catchment area so we did take a gamble with that but I didn't want her to go to our local comp. In terms of placing etc, she came high for Southend and I know children that got offered places there that from outside the Southend Borough but they did well on the VR.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Mar 15, 2006 1:19 pm 
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Thanks Guest, well done to your daughter, do you mind saying where she was placed and scores. Seems to me even if you put your 'catchment' down you may not get it but at least could appeal. Still not sure what to do, we are doing a bit of VR, no tutor but using techniques and practice books, when do you recommend doing test papaers, which ones and what sort of score do you need to aim for? did your daughter perform as well or better than you expected given the fact that she got CCHSG. thanks.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Mar 15, 2006 2:02 pm 
Boo wrote:
Thanks Guest, well done to your daughter, do you mind saying where she was placed and scores. Seems to me even if you put your 'catchment' down you may not get it but at least could appeal. Still not sure what to do, we are doing a bit of VR, no tutor but using techniques and practice books, when do you recommend doing test papaers, which ones and what sort of score do you need to aim for? did your daughter perform as well or better than you expected given the fact that she got CCHSG. thanks.



The problem is you can't actually tell where you child is placed for the school they got into as the total number that sat it for that school includes children that put it as the first, second, third or fourth choice. She came reasonably high but probably even higher if you break it down to just those that chose Chelmsford as their first choice. For Southend she came 30th. She did very well in the VR (90%) and OK in the maths and English but not as well in the maths as we thought she would do (although better in the English than expected!). That is why I am advising that you must put a lot of work into the VR. I know children that did well in the maths and English but not so well in the VR and they didn't get places.

In terms of practice, the Nfer Nelson papers are excellent (and they provide the VR questions on the day apparently). I would also recommend buying past papers from the CSSE (www.csse.org.uk) BUT do not let your child do the CSSE ones until she is getting good scores (85% +). They are very difficult and it will knock her confidence if you give it to her too early. This site has good papers as well. You should really be starting practice papers now to get her used to them as you will need to make sure her timing is good on the day. That is another vital thing - the timing on her VR - she needs to finish the paper on the day to get as many marks as possible. My daughter said that a lot of other girls didn't finish the last page.


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