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 Post subject: Ibstock exam anyone?
PostPosted: Tue Jan 19, 2010 6:01 pm 
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DS is sitting Ibstock Place exam this Sat and I just wondered whether parents who've done this exam in previous years had any light to throw on the level of difficulty of the papers - in particular, what type of comprehension it tends to be (eg literary (hope not!)/non-fiction etc)? In general, do you have an impression of the criteria they use to select children - ie the type of child they're looking for - since it's not the most academic, but they do get lots of applications, I'm not sure.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 20, 2010 6:23 pm 
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Location: London
this isnt answering your question but might be relevant if you get to the stage of considering a place. We looked into it last year - and I really quite liked it when I went round it - but we then met a neighbour who was taking her daughter out after 2 years because the homework was ridiculous - a good 3 hours most nights, poor parent/school communication and apparently just a lot of pressure to help the school get up the league tables. She was moving her girl to Notting Hill and Ealing - as a less pressured option - which seems a bit crazy

This is obviously entirely anecdotal and do take it with a pinch of salt but coupled with a relatively tricky journey it was enough to put us off and in the end we didnt do the exam.

Any Ibstock parents out there please do put me right - I dont want to mislead anyone - but I know when I was in this position last year I wanted all the info I could get, good , bad, formal, informal - to sort through and then decide accordingly


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 21, 2010 4:04 pm 
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Thanks for that Mittenkitten - I think you're right in that Ibstock is trying to up its academic standards but didn't realise the homework was so much - yikes! When I was taken around by a sixth form girl she said it was only about 40 mins a night, which was one of the plus points for me!! (and funnily enough, she had come from Notting hill & ealing high, which she'd found too academic, but that must have been a few years ago - think she switched at about age 13.) I know that the drive for higher grades has affected some junior school parents (again anecdotally - friends of friends) who feel their children have been under too much pressure, but I thought that was more about making sure that all senior school entrants are of a certain standard. Would love to hear experiences - particularly from current parents.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 21, 2010 4:16 pm 
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Location: London
I've never seen much about Ibstock on this site - you might need to broaden your search and ask elsewhere as well - I tried mumsnet last year but dont think that yielded much joy either. It's really to know what the day to day reality of a school is like unless you can talk to some current Y7 parents - you up to loitering at the school gates??!


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 21, 2010 6:24 pm 
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Might get arrested for that, but you've definitely prompted me to find out a little more - I do know of a couple of people whose children went there from my DS's school from previous years who I could get in touch with to see how they're finding it. Time to do some detective work!


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 21, 2010 8:05 pm 
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I know some children there, some who've just gone from DS's class at primary into Y7. There is a lot of homework, but that seems to be the case for all DS's friends who've gone to indpendent secondary - Hampton, Latymer, KGS etc. Generally though the children who went are enjoying themselves.

I know a couple of lovely older children who were at Ibstock from 11 to 16; both chose to leave to do sixth form elsewhere. Don't know how much the loveliness had to do with the school as they were also both from lovely families!


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 26, 2010 9:15 am 
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Just a postscript to this - if the exam day was anything to go by I am impressed! Despite the fact that it was on a Saturday, 9-3.15, in uniform and my DS had to miss his beloved football, he came out absolutely buzzing. He didn't know a soul doing the exam and as I dropped him off I was a little worried he'd feel out of it socially (big cars full of kids in the same prep school uniform being dropped off) but he'd made some friends by the end of the day and didn't find it a problem at all. Food throughout the day was fantastic and the two lessons they did in the afternoon - DT and science - he'd found really interesting. So....still need to do more research but he certainly came out wanting to go there!


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 26, 2010 9:16 am 
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Joined: Sat Oct 24, 2009 4:56 pm
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Just a postscript to this - if the exam day was anything to go by I am impressed! Despite the fact that it was on a Saturday, 9-3.15, in uniform and my DS had to miss his beloved football, he came out absolutely buzzing. He didn't know a soul doing the exam and as I dropped him off I was a little worried he'd feel out of it socially (big cars full of kids in the same prep school uniform being dropped off) but he'd made some friends by the end of the day and didn't find it a problem at all. Food throughout the day was fantastic and the two lessons they did in the afternoon - DT and science - he'd found really interesting. So....still need to do more research but he certainly came out wanting to go there!


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