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PostPosted: Sun Feb 08, 2009 2:30 pm 
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Joined: Sun Feb 08, 2009 10:47 am
Posts: 2
Location: essex
Hi,

I'm at the very early stage of the 11+ process. Have a dd in yr 4 so will be beginning tutoring in September this year.

I'm a bit confused about the preference form we have to fill in for the LEA when we put down which secondary schools we will be applying to.
As far as i know, we will have to put down four choices in order of preference.

So if i put down 3 grammar schools as my top three and then the last is a comp out of our catchment area (only just) is that allowed?
Ie, do my choices have to include schools in our local catchment?

I'm asking because the only two schools that we are in the catchment for have a pass rate of 30% or less at GCSE level.
Dd is currently on GandT list at her state primary but i'm not putting much store in this tbh as I'm aware it's only a marker of how well she is doing in her particular school rather than across the board if you see what i mean.

Any advice at this stage would be very much appreciated.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 08, 2009 3:20 pm 
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Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2007 1:12 pm
Posts: 151
Hi,
I suggest you find out if your local catchment school traditionally has less applications than it does places. If that is the case then you would be ok not to include it on your preferences as it would be allocated to you should your DD fail to meet the criteria for your 4 choices.
However, if your local school is over subscribed you MUST include it as your last choice in order to be allocated a place should your daughter not score high enough on the 11+.

I was in the same position as you and had to drop one of the 3 grammars we liked in order to put an (only just) out of catchment comp as well as my local comp as a last resort. I must stress though that my local comp is still seen as an ok/good school and is therefore oversubscribed.

Last year, a few people locally ignored this proceedure. The result was them being offered a poor school out of area as it was the nearest one to them that had places still available after National Offer Day. They sorted it out eventually through an appeal process but it was a very draining experience for both them and their children.

I note that you are from Loughton, here are some figures from schools in your area for last year's entry:-
Davenant - 160 spaces 642 applicants
Debden Park - 180 spaces 303 applications
King Harold - 220 spaces 220 applicants
Roding Valley - 240 spaces 724 applications

Hope this helps. Good luck.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2009 12:25 pm 
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Joined: Sun Feb 08, 2009 10:47 am
Posts: 2
Location: essex
That's fantastic info, many thanks for your help.

I am ahead of myself i know but at the moment the schools in our area are so dire that we only have a realistic choice of either grammar or independent if we want dd to reach her potential. (we are just outside Harlow by the way).

Although independent is doable, i'd rather not spend thousands on school fees when i could save a lot of it for university if that is where she decides to head. Also, I think a lot of the grammar schools offer the same benefits (sometimes more) than the local independents.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2009 2:39 pm 
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Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2007 1:12 pm
Posts: 151
Sorry, I have no idea where I got Loughton from! Too much 11+ stress!!


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2009 10:10 pm 
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Joined: Sat Sep 27, 2008 10:19 am
Posts: 50
Im in almost the same situation as the OP. I have a DD in Yr 4 and Ive started to look at the options already!

Our nearest school is a "sink comp" and **** will freeze over before she is sent there. We do have two very good high schools not too far away but places are highly fought for. One offers a maths exam as a route to entry which she will sit.

None of the Essex Grammars are that close but the bus to Chelmsford HSFG does pass fairly close to us so our preference was intending to be:

Chelmsford High School FG
Westcliff HS FG
Mayflower HS
The Billericay School

However after reading the OPs post, Im worried that if she doesnt pass either the 11+ or Billericay's entrance exam we will be allocated the sink comp, so the "risk" is to put only 1 Grammar School and put another school down (there are a couple of others Id consider but they arent easy to get to but still light years better than the local choice).

I know its ages away but Id to get things clear in my head! Is it worth putting down more than one Grammar? We are miles from both - so she would only get a place with a fairly high 11+ score .


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