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 Post subject: Tiffin School new exam
PostPosted: Sun Nov 16, 2014 12:04 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 15, 2014 2:47 pm
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Hi
I have just registered on this forum (although I have been having a peek for years) as I have just heard that TS is changing the admission exam to English and maths, like the Sutton schools.
If they started the consultation does it mean it is going to definitely change?
I understand they did have a consultation before and decided to leave it as it is but they clearly say on the website that the school has proposed it so I do not see how they'll go back on it. However the present head said at the open day this year that they will keep the VR/NVR as they are the least untutorable exams and at a recent school meeting she mentioned the same thing and the fact that if the school decides to change the exam it will give a year's notice.
As the consultation has to run for 3 months it will be confirmed in Feb/March with only 6 months notice.
Should I take it as a forgone conclusion that it will change?
My DS is in year 5 and we started tutoring him for VR/NVR. We are doing English and maths anyway but not with the same intensity. I have called the tutor re VR and she said that she advises to continue with it as the English at the Sutton schools contains a lot of VR.
Presumably TS exam will be similar so should I continue with VR?
I'm just panicking a bit as there is so much ground to cover can somebody advise me please?


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 16, 2014 12:58 pm 
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Well nothing's a foregone conclusion but consultations are usually put out as a legal requirement to support a plan the school wants to implement. I would say it's 99% certain to happen.

I don't think there will be masses of support to keep the old testing except from old school specialist Tiffin tutors.... Those teaching NVR for Tiffin should make it clear that this will likely be time and money down the drain. VR may help the English a bit but you should focus on English skills more generally.

It's for extrance in 2016 so lots of time to brush up school curriculum maths and English. Hopefully a relief for all kids and parents who won't have to rotate shapes, spot differences etc. all in about 40 seconds per question..


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 16, 2014 4:19 pm 
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Thanks panicattack
Is my feeling also because I can see the sense in preparing for English and maths rather then some 2 D shapes and obscure codes. :lol: :lol:


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2014 9:05 pm 
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Do you think the changes will also effect Tiffin Girls? My DD is doing tuition in NR/VR


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2014 5:51 am 
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Draft admission arrangements will be issued in December and determined arrangements in next April. Only then, we would definitely know. But it looks like, TGS is also moving towards English/maths tests only.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2014 10:10 am 
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Very interesting. Any ideas why this is happening? Do they have issues with students arriving at the school with a low standard of English? Will it include Creative Writing or just Comprehension. VR and English are quite different exams so tutors should really be advising a refocus onto English and Maths. As has been said the school obviously has a strong reason for doing this and is unlikely to backtrack. DG


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2014 10:42 am 
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Location: Kingston upon Thames
Daogroupie wrote:
Very interesting. Any ideas why this is happening? Do they have issues with students arriving at the school with a low standard of English? Will it include Creative Writing or just Comprehension. VR and English are quite different exams so tutors should really be advising a refocus onto English and Maths. As has been said the school obviously has a strong reason for doing this and is unlikely to backtrack. DG


I think there are a number of possible reasons :
The VR and NVR tests are no longer as good at identifying strong candidates as they have partly become a who practices them the most will get a good result.
English is more of a focus so has become higher priority, and to some extent a way of testing has now been found (the problem is not the test, but the subjective nature of marking, and fact you can't computer mark it, so was previously ruled out as time consuming / expensive)
The learning / tutoring for tests has become a big thing, have to try and keep ahead of the tutors so you can identify the good candidates, not those who have been taught how to pass, but know little else.
An element of discouraging the large number of test sitters who aren't ever serious about joining, but see it as a free mock for Independants. Cutting the number of candidates saves money.
If the exams are a different format to other schools, will make it less likely that a candidate is tutored specifically for that exam, as many sit entrance exams at multiple schools.

It is also rumoured that there have been complaints from some primaries as some parents are taking children out of school for a day or two (maybe more) to revise before the exams, not supposed to happen as it disrupts their learning and gives them bad attendance stats. The actual exam day is ok as primary can record a B for attendance (at another education establishment). Much less likely to happen for an English and Maths test.

.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2014 1:23 pm 
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Location: Herts
Private schools have always focused a lot more on English and Maths so if TB moves to English and Maths then you will have more sitting as a free mock. And harder exams will result in more parents taking students out of school just before exams.

I assume the new way of testing English you are talking about is CEM. In that case they will be throwing the baby out with the bath water as that is not really a proper English paper.

If they were to do what HBS and DAO do , they could have a VR/CEM paper then only mark the English/Maths of those who get a great mark in the VR/CEM. That will reduce the marking hit. DG


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2014 1:39 pm 
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DG, it seems that Tiffin Schools are joining Sutton Consortium, where stage 1 is 2 multiple choice papers in Numeracy & literacy (called SET - Selective Eligibility Test). Then there would be second stage of English & Maths standard tests for 500 or so who pass the SET.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2014 1:52 pm 
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With more and more schools joining consortiums/sharing exams are we heading for a borough/county and ultimately national test day ?


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