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PostPosted: Mon Jan 18, 2010 11:50 am 
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Has anyone seen the following on the Judd school website (also the Skinners school website) with regards to an Admissions Consultation (2011 Admissions):

In accordance with Government legislation the Governing Body is consulting on its Admission Arrangements for 2011. The period of consultation is 1 January 2010 to 28 February 2010. Any interested parties should make a submission to the Governing Body.

The Governing Body are consulting on unchanged Admission Arrangements for the September 2011 entry of Year 7 and Year 12 students. The Governing Body’s principles underlying their choice of admission criteria are:

1 Selection to be on merit
2 Simplicity


It can be found in full here:

http://frog.judd.kent.sch.uk/user/74/45508.pdf

This means no catchment of any kind to favour either Kent pupils or those within sensible commuting distances from the schools.

Thoughts anyone?

Regards
Sevenoaksparent


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 18, 2010 1:46 pm 
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Sorry, can't seem to open the webiste ref you've given (my ineptitude, no doubt). In recent history both schools have taken on merit, as opposed to catchment, so presumably they are simply complying with 'politics' and allowing submissions against this policy to be made? Forgive me if I've misread this....


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 18, 2010 3:07 pm 
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PB Mum wrote:
Sorry, can't seem to open the webiste ref you've given (my ineptitude, no doubt). In recent history both schools have taken on merit, as opposed to catchment, so presumably they are simply complying with 'politics' and allowing submissions against this policy to be made? Forgive me if I've misread this....

The article can be accessed via the main Judd website address, then click on "school" then "admissions":

http://frog.judd.kent.sch.uk/

Both Judd and Skinners used to have a catchment, in fact a reading of the history of the two schools shows how both were founded to provide for the needs of local children.

The schools having this form of open admissions policy has led to boys Grammar places in West Kent being in increasingly short supply, with the problem resulting in Tunbridge Wells Grammar School for Boys having to open whole new forms to compensate - which presents whole new challenges (not least health & safety).

The open admissions policy has also led to the situation of pupils travelling huge distances both ways to get to school each day. Some West Kent pupils on the doorstep of Judd & Skinners in the past have been given places in Folkestone and Sittingbourne, and then you have children travelling long distances to these schools (e.g. from Lewisham, Bromley, out of county, plus the far reaches of Kent) which seems a little crazy.

I would have thought an admissions policy favouring children in reasonable commuting distance to these schools would be more sensible..

Any thoughts would be welcomed


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 18, 2010 4:05 pm 
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This is a real dilemma. So much so that there are a number of threads on this site about this issue.

People mention the high numbers of boys that live a long way away which attend Judd/Skinners. I cannot speak for The Judd, but I know that in the current Y7 at Skinners, there is barely a handful of boys that live, what I would consider, a long distance away.

Also, should 'the ease of the journey' be taken into consideration. As both of these schools are on the Hastings line, it may take a boy from Hastings less time to get into school than a boy that lives closer but has an awkward journey.

I suppose the argument would be that if places were offered on distance, then more local boys would have a chance of attaining a place as opposed to boys living further away. The counter argument against this is that a selective education system, as we have in Kent, is just that - Selective. So why should children living closer to the school have more right to attend, than brighter children?

It is such a minefield and also different areas stand to benefit. For example if all the schools had a distance criteria, than potentially boys from Sevenoaks will not get places at TWGSB as they would be sent to The Judd, thus in affect giving the high scoring children in Sevenoaks less choice.

Another option would be to only have a number of places available for high scoring children, and the rest to go on distance, as some of the girls GSs have. I think I have seen figures that the girls GSs which do this, actually give more places to OoC children, than Skinners does.

So basically I don't know where I stand on this issue. As I see it, the schools are damned if they do and damned if they don't.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 18, 2010 8:35 pm 
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Well if I didn't live in Kent, and could look at it dispassionately I would say the admissions policy should be either:

- purely based on score ....... and leave it up to the individual to decide if the commute is appropriate or not

- or purely based on distance (assuming that child has achieved 11+ "pass" )

My reasons - this is logical. It may have a negative impact on some children, and a positive impact on others, but all policy changes have winners and losers, and things based on county boundaries etc are just arbitrary ( as really is the 11+ pass mark!, but hey Kent still has an 11+ system after all these decades).


I'm not really one for going into the history of all of this, whether the school was for "local" boys or not. I am however still interested in the history of all of this as there are some interesting unresolved debates on thsi website. There are those that state that Judd became superselective by the back door quite recently ....... no consultation, and that it was pretty recent. I find this hard to believe as consultation on admissions policies has been required for yonks. Also I know someone who passed 11+ eight years ago and didn't get into Judd cos their score was not high enough. So presumably it was superselective in some way even then, so how do people reckon it only became superselective in the last four years or so?


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 20, 2010 6:23 am 
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As has already been said there will always be winners and losers with any policy. If cross county boundaries were introduced for all schools it would restrict choices for many children and their parents including all those that travel from Kent across to Beacon and Uplands Schools in East Sussex.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 21, 2010 12:14 pm 
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It's also of interest the number of places these schools offer to pupils from the independent sector - 2009 figures below:

Number of pupils offered who attended an independent school (2009):
Judd 41%
Skinners 28%
TWGSB 16%

I've no objections to private school pupils gaining places it's the fact there are no restrictions on tutoring at independent schools, unlike in the state sector who can only do limited familiarisation papers.

I often hear the independents are tutoring from year 3 to pass the 11-plus, which is hardly a level playing field! KCC should remove all restrictions in state primaries regarding tutoring for the 11-plus to level the playing field!

Thoughts anyone?

Regards
SOP


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 21, 2010 12:46 pm 
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A distinction needs to made between Independant schools and Prep schools. Indies which go up to Senior School do not tutor children as its not in their interest to have them go to a GS. Infact they positively discourage it. Prep schools do as that is one of their selling points that they can get their students into GS. Having said that even if your child is in a Prep school you still have to do a lot of work with them yourself to ensure you get the result you want (personal experience).


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 21, 2010 12:53 pm 
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Location: Maidstone
Sevenoaksparent wrote:
It's also of interest the number of places these schools offer to pupils from the independent sector - 2009 figures below:

Number of pupils offered who attended an independent school (2009):
Judd 41%
Skinners 28%
TWGSB 16%

Thoughts anyone?

Regards
SOP


I doubt there is much hope for a fairer system. It goes beyond 11+, I recently found out even on entering university, a gramma pupil has half the chance to that of indies with the same score. I am starting to look at indies too but will be applying for scholarships and bursaries. My local gramma Invicta had the highest score this year in England at GCSE and very impressive A level results too....I checked university desinations and only 2 made it to oxbrige and 22% made it to the top 25 univesities.

Now why Judd and Skinners get all the kids from indies is that unlike most of the grammas, they somehow get their kids to the top universities and its no suprising that there is such huge demand from these well heeled parents...They are only a very few state schools in who send to the ivy league universities and these do it well....

the above figures of kids from indies are are inline with the ratings of how well they do in sending kids to top universities. With Judd sending the most, followed by skinners and I doubt I even saw TWGSB in the list

I doubt Judd and Skinners would want to play ball and just admit students because they are near. they simply want the best to keep their reputation. No different to how oxbridge universities do it...they just simply want the top cream and they will vigorously defend anyone who suggest otherwise

IMHO i think the politicians love it to that way because they are part of the elite who benefit out of it , If conservative get in power then it will get even more exclusive, his speech this week on teacher training suggested that....


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 21, 2010 12:57 pm 
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I agree with Bromley Mum, the parents do a lot of work with the children, as can be evidenced just from reading the posts on this site. The figures you quote for 'offers' would be more interesting if the following data were available: What is the proportion of boys overall in the 'area' (difficult to define, I accept) who attend an independent school as opposed to state? What proportion take up the offers ? (knowing at least 2 boys who didn't, in 2009)
By 'tutoring' I assume you mean 'training' within the school environment, rather than separately funded tutoring? Parents have varied reasons for choosing indie 'early years', perhaps it does give a number of children a head start, but then that's how they choose to spend their money, isn't it?
And so the debate will go on....


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