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PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2008 4:21 pm 
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Joined: Sat Aug 25, 2007 10:21 pm
Posts: 47
Managed to get to a peak for the Bexley Test but with everything going on and felt she needed a break haven't really been doing too much practise. DD isn't keen on practise. Started doing some papers again, score she is achieveing is maths around 68%, the NVR VR about the same or a little less. The practise papers she done at school again were the same marks, and one of them she had done with me a while ago.

All the info. we have about Dartford Test or NWK is a little out of date as last year they changed the system and I think up until then children could get through with 50%. Our school has a good pass mark but last year was a bit of a shock.... obviously it is also down to the intake of child but we usually have about 40%-50% pass mark. Last year was about 30%.

I am getting really worried as NWK is our local schools and she would love to go to one of the grammars, I believe she is up to it. What level of score should she be getting in the NFER papers. The trouble is living in my area you do not have good non selective schools.

Some advice for an anxious mum.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2008 6:20 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2007 8:55 pm
Posts: 851
Location: Bexley
When a child scores lower marks than you think they're capable of it's difficult to tell if the score is an accurate reflection of their ability or if they're just bored with practice. My eldest son, who is now 13, drove me to distraction when we were preparing for his 11+. He never scored anything higher than 59% in the English practice papers which he would complete in about 10-15 minutes. Infuriatingly, when I went through them with him afterwards he would regularly interupt me with the right answer, even though he'd put the wrong answer down. On one occasion, when I was particularly exasperated, he looked at me and said, "but it's because it's only a practice paper - I'll try harder when it's the real thing". He passed his 11+ by 37 marks and got very similar marks in all the papers despite maths being his best subject and English his most hated.

Perhaps your daughter is in the same frame of mind - bored with the practice? My second son did the Bexley test in November and we have done absolutely zero practice for the Kent test - I haven't even been able to get him to do his maths homework for school during the Xmas holidays. I must admit I'm now starting to feel twitchy about the lack of preparation but I firmly believe that, with only days to go, there is no point. I'm hoping the preparation we did for the tests in November will all come back to him. The best we can do now is make sure our children are in the right frame of mind to do the test - ie relaxed, happy and not feeling like everything rides on their performance in the test.

Your daughter clearly goes to a very good primary with that success rate at 11+. Last year we got 1 out of 75 through the 11+ and the year before I think it was 5 out of the same number!! I'm just hoping my second son will be in that teeny minority this year!!

Soon be over!!


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2008 6:40 pm 
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Joined: Sat Aug 25, 2007 10:21 pm
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Hi Bexley Mum 2, Thank you for taking the time to reply. I think my daughter is like your son. I managed to get nearly a whole VR paper out of her today, she scored 64 out of 72, this was the NFER 11c, looked back at the other NFER she had done ages ago and must admit they were equally as good. But not the practise paper at school the other day!!! she scored 32ish. I think we will go over some maths but she has gone off playing with our next door neighbour all happy as she done so well...

I just can't work this all out. When we had a meeting with the head before the end of the year 5, he said she was borderline, as our school use the CAT tests which is a very good indicator of their ability, her weakest subject was VR and he said that couldn't be improved on! I think her score was 109, they like you to be at least 115.

Yes my DD is very lucky to go to such a good school, alas that is all changing, they are bringing in the 21st century, there words, with a new head and there are a lot of changes, the old head would concentrate on the 11+, even though possibly they weren't allowed, but that is not the modern way... luckily for me we are going this year. I am sure it will all be fine in a few years but difficult for children who are going through the change!! lots of panicky parents....

I have read many of your posts as I live near Bexley so take an interest in that forum too, so thank you for all your time in writing it has been a fantastic site for me to gain information.

Have you heard the latest that the Bexley and Dartford test are on the same day next September, I understand they are asking year 5 parents for their comments!!! Our year 5 parents received a letter pre xmas.

Good Luck for your child and I hope you get what you want.
My son went to Colfe's a lovely school (i think I read a post where you mentioned your interest in that school)?


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2008 10:10 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jan 26, 2007 7:21 pm
Posts: 217
Location: Kent & Medway
Whatever you do, don't take any note of the Kent regional information on this website. I have repeatedly complained over the past two years that it is rubbish, wrong, and misleading, merely serving as an advert for a tutor who doesn't and didn't understand the system. The information about West and North West Kent has never been true. I have several times offered to rewrite it, so that readers will know the true facts which are published on other websites - I know a thing or two about the system across Kent, but the administrator prefers to keep the advert and wrong information running (I anticipate this entry will be deleted!).


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2008 10:43 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2007 2:32 pm
Posts: 6966
Location: East Kent
may i ask what you think it is wrong and misleading Peter?

The whole kent/Medway/Bexley split is very confusing. I am in deepest East kent.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2008 10:47 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2007 2:32 pm
Posts: 6966
Location: East Kent
just had a look.

In my bit of kent we do vr paper, nvr paper, maths paper and a piece of writing which is only looked at in the case of school appeal

what is it like in the 'other bits'?/


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2008 10:51 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jan 26, 2007 7:21 pm
Posts: 217
Location: Kent & Medway
Try the following for a start:

"Non-Verbal Reasoning

In general, this is not required in Kent but some boroughs (e.g. Sevenoaks) do test pupils in Non-Verbal Reasoning, normally 60 questions in 50 minutes, set out in 5 sections with 12 in each. It is always best to check with the prospective school, especially if it is out of the borough
".

This was untrue even in 2005, but based on the system that operated for the North West Kent grammar schools then. There was never, ever a difference across Kent boroughs, indeed Sevenoaks doesn't even have a grammar school of its own. I could continue, but I have said all this before.


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 Post subject: yoyo
PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2008 11:14 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jan 26, 2007 7:21 pm
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Location: Kent & Medway
Yoyo,
The Kent test is now consistent across the county (apart from the additional Dover test which could spread to other schools in future years). Apart from the west Kent super selectives who take highest scorers, the pass standard is the same cross county. Some West Kent children who pass the eleven plus will find there are insufficient grammar school places. The appeal process operates differently, with different patterns and expectations in different parts of the county. For example, Maidstone Grammar has gone Foundation with one declared outcome to have control over its appeal procedure. Expectations and experiences vary greatly from area to area, often from town to town. As a result, generalised statements for Kent issues are very dangerous. Of course, Medway is a completely different system. Your East Kent experience is vastly different from someone living in Sevenoaks, Dartford, Maidstone etc.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2008 11:03 am 
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Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2007 8:55 pm
Posts: 851
Location: Bexley
Thehorder - hi! Finally I've found somebody who knows something about Colfe's! I'm glad your son enjoyed his time there. It certainly seems by far the nicest of all the schools we've looked at, but, of course, it comes at a price! You say you live near Bexley - did your son have a difficult journey to get to Colfe's? That's one of the problems we would have - public transport would be a nightmare for him and it's a good half hour's drive during the middle of the day so goodness knows what it would be like during the rush hour.

Are you sure the letter from your school said Dartford and Bexley tests to be on the same day? As Peter says further on, the whole of Kent now does the same test at the same time. And surely they must realise what havoc that would cause for people on the Bexley/Kent border! But then nothing would surprise me about this whole process now!!

Good luck to your daughter.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2008 11:50 am 
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Joined: Sat Aug 25, 2007 10:21 pm
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Hi Bexleymum2

The journey wasn't too bad as we live not far from the a20, but I guess you aren't too far from the A2. My son who is 22 know!! so awhile ago, before girls were at the school. Never went by public transport, a lot do travel by train though, Lee is on the Sidcup line, I think you are probably Bexleyheath line.

Luckily for me my dh took my son to school and I would collect him. The journey traffic free was only 15mins. It is a lovely school and children are priviledged if they can attend... but my son did struggle there and I know the standards are even higher with the intake of girls.

A big drawback for me wasn't the education but that the friends were so far spread about. I would have to take him to Catford quite often. A lot of the children live Bickley area.

My son attended private throughout his whole schooling and so a lot of his friends were at colfe's. It is hard for children who may not know many children.

DD well I thought about Bromley High from the start of school even sent her to the right nursery to get her in. I then changed my mind, thinking of how far she would be from friends etc. and it has been nice going to the local school, something I never experienced with my son. I was lucky enough to get her into my chosen school. But I wouldn't hesitate sending my son to Colfes again especially if my choices for him weren't so good. It would only be necessary if he didn't pass though. But children are all different, my experience is that without private education my son would be less knowledgeable. Unfortunately secondary school wasn't for him, he struggled and in those days dyslexia etc. was just appearing, today he would have got lots of help. As well the private system does not cater too much for special needs.


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