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 Post subject: Lack of transparency
PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2009 9:58 am 
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Joined: Tue Mar 31, 2009 8:29 am
Posts: 116
Does anyone feel, as I do, that we don't receive anything like enough information from KCC about how the 11+ works? I only know about how the scores work from this forum and other independent research; and does ANYONE really understand the standardisation system?

In this era of open government, how come the whole thing is shrouded in mystery? Let's not forget it's our taxes paying for all of this!

BTW, I'm in favour of having selective education. I'd just like to feel as informed as possible!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2009 10:24 am 
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Joined: Tue May 05, 2009 9:26 pm
Posts: 439
I agree entirely testbuster. I have managed to piece together my knowledge from this forum and playground discussions. This lack of communication coupled with a primary school that gave out very little information at all made the whole process much more stressful than it should have been been. It was very clear in the run to the tests last week that many parents at our school had no real understanding of the scoring system at all.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2009 11:39 am 
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Joined: Tue Mar 31, 2009 8:29 am
Posts: 116
Yes and what gets me is that kids are invited to a practise session then not told if there will be a result. When I rang KCC the guy on the phone didn't know either, dithered, then said...er...no probably not! This sums out the total lack of information out there.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2009 12:03 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2007 9:28 am
Posts: 1123
Location: Bexley
The best people to get advise from are grammar school parents. They know the ropes. Obviously this isn't easy if it's your first child and you do not have those contacts.
Please be aware though, systems, exams, criteria all change so you need to be up to date with the info.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2009 1:54 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 17, 2009 7:06 pm
Posts: 37
Location: kent
I think there are a couple of important issues here. First, many of the teachers and head teachers do not agree with selective education. Fair enough, but we, as parents, have to live with this system and need as much support as possible. I found my son's Y3 and Y4 teachers absolutley clueless wrt whether my DS was suitable to sit the 11+. Even his Y5 teacher seemed ill informed regarding the requirments. The school were helpful at the end of Y5, however, giving some advice after CAT scores were available in June. The staff were all very kind to the children on the days of the exam. Second, the practice tests are not marked (but we were able to visit the school and look at his papers as we felt it went badly and needed reassurance). But if the children had known it was not to be marked - would they have concentrated? It would not have been a real 'trial run'. So maybe that is why they don't tell us?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2009 2:08 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2009 9:56 pm
Posts: 8228
I don't know. But years ago the 11+ was something that just happened to everybody. They went in and did it, came out again, and either wnet to secondary mod or grammar school.

It's just one method to find the top X% of a population. Not flawless by any means. Most parents would not understand about standardisation no matter how many times it was explained to them.

No the information people receive about the 11+ isn't great, but it's probably enough for most. You can always contact your LEA if you want to know more. E-mailing your admissions section at the LEA is great. There's usually someone at the other end who will tell you something useful if' it's a county-wide test. If it's just one selective school, that's who you need to contact. Beware some of the incorrect stuff that people post on this website.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2009 2:10 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2007 2:32 pm
Posts: 6966
Location: East Kent
from the other side of the fence as it were, as teachers we do not know much about the Kent test, especially if you are not the head or year 6 teacher. I found out more on here than I ever found out in school.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2009 2:26 pm 
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Joined: Sun Feb 08, 2009 11:09 am
Posts: 646
I agree with Mystery, when I did the 11+, and just failed I hasten to add, it was no big deal, everybody in the school did it and seem to have had no idea.

Personally, and I'm sure this will raise some heckles, I feel that everybody should have to do it, not be opt-in as it is now and that the content should be changed every year. Maybe they should still do 2-3 papers, but they should change every year. So as opposed to now where we know that there is NVR, VR and Maths and what types of questions there are on each paper. So one year it might be 3 VR papers or 3 NVR, hopefully that way it will make it more difficult to tutor for and we will go back to the 'good old days' where every child had a fair chance. No like now where kids from mainly middle class families are being tutored within an inch of their lives in order to get a GS place, and kids from other families going in like a lamb to the slaughter.

Obviously, the LEA would also have to do something about improving all the schools so that the kids that happen to not pass, still had every opportunity to get as good results as GS kids.

Or maybe we should just scrap all the GS and send our kids to the closest school.

I shall now take cover 8)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2009 2:41 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 31, 2009 8:29 am
Posts: 116
I agree it should be opt-out not opt-in. There must be bright children who miss out because their family thinks it's "not for the likes of them." But for all its failings, I do believe the 11+ still gives the best chance of a good education to everyone who can't afford to pay to go private! I care about quality education and personally I don't believe people are born into one class or another and can never change their own fate.

My point, though, is that as it's a publicly administered test run by civil servants there is very little open information. At times it seems like even the Afghan elections are more open.

Thanks for the other suggestions to ask parents etc. I feel quite clued up myself but I still know there are quite a few gaps in my knowledge so I was thinking maybe it all needs to be pulled together in one place.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2009 2:56 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2007 9:28 am
Posts: 1123
Location: Bexley
Quote:
At times it seems like even the Afghan elections are more open.


:lol: :lol: :lol:


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