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PostPosted: Tue Sep 16, 2014 9:00 am 
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Calling on parents/carers of children in the grammar stream at Knole: please help with your thoughts on the quality of the offering so far:

What is the standard of teaching overall and for different subject areas? Are students stretched and encouraged? Do you have any concerns? Has this year got off to a good start?

Would you recommend the school for those who pass the 11+ for 2015 entry?

Did you or any other Knole parents choose Knole over other grammar options; would you if you had the choice now?

Was location a factor in your original choice of Knole?

Is there any tension between the grammar stream kids and other students? If so, how does the school deal with this? Do groups mix for games and socialising?


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 18, 2014 10:53 pm 
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Went to the Knole open evening tonight and I was impressed. Student guides were very informative. My guide passed for grammar, but chose Knole because it was mixed and she can walk there She spoke highly of her teachers and said she made a full level of progress last year. The facilities were great. 5 a to c could better, but the grammar stream is year 9downwards I was told, so no real results from them yet.

I loved st Gregs when I saw that last year as well so really pleased to have two good schools to pick from that are coed and none selective. Shame they are both a bus ride away.


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 18, 2014 10:57 pm 
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Sorry, just noticed the last bit on the first post. My guide told me that the are settled for maths, English and science and streamed for geography, history, etc. all mixed together for PE and tech. She said she had friends in all different groups.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 20, 2014 11:49 am 
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Thanks, that's really useful. Did you attend a talk by the head teacher at Knole as well? Just wondering if you got any sense of what kind of progress the grammar stream children were making as a group?


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 20, 2014 2:43 pm 
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No, didn't talk to the head. There was a separate grammar talk, but I missed it. They are doing grammar evening in October, think it was 22nd. She did say 3 ways into Grammer groups, passing the 11plus, nearly passing and getting level 5s in their tests in June, once you have accepted a place at the school. Got the impression that the October evening is for the nearly passed who didn't have a plan b.


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 03, 2014 1:51 pm 
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I attended the 'grammar stream' open morning yesterday and was really impressed by the teaching and by the behaviour of the students.

Our tour group made a point of deviating from the planned route in two buildings and walked along corridors where there were attentive, orderly classes on both sides.

One teacher whose Maths lesson we observed briefly from the doorway came out to explain that her small class of well-behaved kids were 'bottom set' - presumably to clarify why they were doing their 7 x table. She had an Assistant helping out which I thought was very good. I'd have been very happy with the set-up if my DC were needing remedial support.

The management and student presentations following the tour were quite good. More useful was the opportunity to talk afterwards to some of the current grammar stream students. There was a lot of praise for the quality of the teaching and individual support. When pushed for a critical analysis, the quality of supply teachers was mentioned as a problem, but I don't know how that compares with other schools. (I suppose there is also a follow-on question for the school to find out the level of teacher absenteeism.)

According to our Year 9 tour guide, there is good deal of movement to and from the grammar streams , including in-year, with regular assessment. The 'top' grammar stream, who have passed the 11+, are guaranteed their places for three years; the middle and lower grammar streams are subject to review, and children who start off outside of the grammar streams altogether can move into it if they show sufficient aptitude - one difference being that the grammar stream completes KS3 in two years instead of three.

Our guide said she had joined in the 'middle' grammar stream, for children who narrowly missed passing the 11+, but has this year moved into the top set for English, Maths and Science. (I don't have a handle yet on how subject setting works in relation to streaming at Knole: does anyone know?)

It's a pity that Knole offers a smaller range of academic subjects than some schools, eg French is the only foreign language; but I would favour it over Trinity for 2016 entry for my DS unless my impressions visiting both again next year are vastly different.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2014 9:45 am 
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We've only recently become aware of the grammar stream option offered by Knowle, do many children get in from the Edenbridge area or is it too far?


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 19, 2014 2:03 pm 
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I see no-one has replied to you, Mumof2boyskent. I can't help directly either, as we're Sevenoaks-based, but Knole does have a Grammar Stream Information Evening coming up on 22 October, designed for those who missed earlier Open sessions, and there are contact details on the website if you prefer to enquire by phone.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 20, 2016 5:41 pm 
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I can thoroughly recommend the Knole Academy grammar stream. My daughter is very happy there.

The children are pushed academically with interesting lessons and plenty of homework.

Teaching takes place with other grammar stream pupils. For PE, they are taught with their own sex but still with grammar stream pupils.

The form classes are mixed abilities as are assemblies etc.

Children are regularly assessed and those who are struggling/excelling in a particular subject are moved up or down accordingly in that subject.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 22, 2016 3:19 pm 
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I have heard of problems at Knole with teacher turnover and the frequency and indifferent quality of supply teachers - what is your DD's experience in that regard?

A source within the school told me that 13 teachers left last year, including four retirees and two teachers on temporary contracts who were let go as 'not good enough'. Can you corroborate that?


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