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 Post subject: Moving to Kent
PostPosted: Tue Aug 07, 2012 8:59 am 
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Joined: Tue Aug 07, 2012 8:48 am
Posts: 1
Hello,

We are thinking of moving to Kent from a non GS area. I think our children would flourish at a grammar school, if they can get in!

My only concern is exactly that: what if they don't get in? I've got the impression from a few threads I've read on the Kent forum that the state secondaries, ie those that aren't grammars, are not so hot but because we don't live in the area yet I don't know the full picture. Are they really dire?

And how hard is it to get into the Grammar schools? We love the look of Maidstone Grammar for boys and Simon Langton for boys. They seem to be a bit more selective than some of the other schools though. Am I right? What kind of scores/ SATS scores should we be aiming for to know we're in with a chance?

Sorry for all the questions :oops:


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 Post subject: Re: Moving to Kent
PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2012 2:56 pm 
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Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2009 12:41 pm
Posts: 1596
Location: Gravesend, Kent
Welcome to the forum Freeda!

Sorry no-one has replied yet to your specific questions - I think a lot of members are away or are glued to the Olympics!

I'm in Gravesend, I'm so afraid I can't answer your Maidstone questions.

I can give my opinion on other state secondaries though.

I feel that those with children at Grammar, like my DD1 (going in to year 13) look down on secondaries - I admit I did myself!

Then DD2, only 2 years behind DD1, suffers from dyslexia/dyspraxia and poor vision - and suddenly the idea she would follow her sister to Grammar was totally absurd as in year 6 she couldn't even spell the word 'eleven', let alone take the 'eleven plus'!

Asking friends about single-sex or mixed secondaries was a bad idea as all I heard was horrible things and dire warnings of chavness, smoking, bullying and assault. No-one told me any good stories.

Looking around the schools at open evenings was more helpful, and visiting during the school day was even better.

DD2 could have gone to the local secondary a few hundred yards away, but their Special Needs Coordinator admitted that DD2 was far too well behaved to receive any help - but if she could throw a chair in the classroom, she would be given extra help :shock:

Another school said that because of her poor vision, they could tailor help to her specific needs. Needless to say, we chose that school - but she didn't get in! A newly-built housing estate between us and the school meant that the catchment had shrunk from about 4 miles to 1.6 miles and as we lived 2.2 miles away, she didn't get a place. That's when I discovered the this helpful website and the appeals section - we appealed and won!

DD2 has been there for 4 years, has made wonderful friends, tried really hard at school, been supported by teachers, and instead of taking a couple of lower, foundation level GCSEs, is studying 6 higher level GCSEs and diplomas. There are 'chavvy' girls and smokers and occasional bullying, but that DOES happen at Grammars too.

Secondary schools can't compete in the league tables with Grammars, as Grammars do take the top 25% of pupils, but the other 75% have to be educated somewhere, and just because they're not academic doesn't mean they're all thicko hooligans - but most are delightful, hardworking young people! :D

Sorry for long reply, but wanted to assure you that the non-Grammar schools aren't dens of terrible education - some will tell you they are - but they often don't have children at the schools, but just pass on rumours!

Hope you get replies from the Maidstone lot soon!


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 Post subject: Re: Moving to Kent
PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2012 1:15 pm 
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Joined: Fri Aug 17, 2012 2:38 am
Posts: 61
We are also moving to Kent and have enrolled our son to do his 11+ exam. Does anyone know what date we need to be livin in Kent from in order to apply for a Grammer School. I am a bit concerned if he passes then we move they school will see it as an premeditated move. ANy ideas on dates and times we need to live in the area?


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 Post subject: Re: Moving to Kent
PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2012 2:46 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jul 14, 2011 9:18 am
Posts: 306
Hi peter 45

You need to be in by October 31 when you submit your CAF form. Provided you meet the criteria for admission to the school - whether distance or points, they can't object. If you are only renting to get the address to get the child in the school there can be questions, but if your situation is genuine and can be proved you should be fine. KCC admissions can help.


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 Post subject: Re: Moving to Kent
PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2012 3:08 pm 
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Joined: Fri Aug 17, 2012 2:38 am
Posts: 61
Thanks for the reply. We will rent in Tunbridge Wells initially as that is the area in which we want to live. We want to 'get a feel' for the area before we spend 500K+ which is what they seem to go for in the area. It will be our principle home and given we won't have anywhere else to go I guess they can't argue. I just want to get 'all my ducks lined up' as I would hate him to miss a place after all his work because we didn't et our dates right!


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 Post subject: Re: Moving to Kent
PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 8:03 am 
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Joined: Thu Jul 14, 2011 9:18 am
Posts: 306
Good luck - looks like you will have a busy few weeks ahead of you.

I'm sure you're on top of this, but don't forget to check individual admission criteria for the various schools you are going for as TW is definitely one of the 'hottest' areas in terms of competition. I'm not local, but there will be loads here who are and can give you the low-down.

Also worth checking the website we're not allowed to name (Google Kent + education advice) as he has stats on admissions numbers/distance etc.

TW is lovely so I hope you find what you want.


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 Post subject: Re: Moving to Kent
PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 9:44 am 
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Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2007 2:32 pm
Posts: 6966
Location: East Kent
Simon Langton has quite a strict catchment area, round about 7 miles or less. Unlikely you could do that from TW.

:shock: Just checked it's around 50 miles. I take it you have narrowed down to TW?

KCC Admissions are really friendly and willing to answer queries.


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