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PostPosted: Wed Jan 19, 2011 8:41 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 19, 2011 8:02 pm
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It says in the letter, Interview will take place with the group of other girls in a lesson situation.
Has anyone got any idea / experience on St Albans interview?
It will be my daughter's first academic interview.. not so sure what to expect.

Any help/advice will be much appreciated...

Thanks
Jigsaw.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 19, 2011 9:59 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 05, 2010 8:34 pm
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Location: Herts
Last year the girls were paired up, had to plan, execute and evaluate a DT practical. The only 'interview' was a discussion of what they'd been up to with a teacher, so really nothing to worry about. My DD came out smiling and had a lively morning (and was keen to go back!).


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 19, 2011 10:09 pm 
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Thank you.. and it is a good to know there was no 'FORMAL' interview. Thank you for your response.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 19, 2011 10:26 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 04, 2009 2:01 pm
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Location: Herts
Hello Jigsaw, pm me on what slot you got, there are eight different slots. My elder dd did it last year and my dd will be doing it this year. Basically there is no interview and it is not academic. They put them in a group situation and watch how they work as a team and if they actually listen to others or simply try and force through their own ideas. They are looking for team players. DG


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 1:26 pm 
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Daogroupie, I have PM (ed) you...

Thanks ..


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2011 12:31 am 
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Joined: Wed Mar 17, 2010 3:22 pm
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Location: Barnet
Daogroupie wrote:
Basically there is no interview and it is not academic. They put them in a group situation and watch how they work as a team and if they actually listen to others or simply try and force through their own ideas. They are looking for team players. DG

Since when did a school that achieves close to 90% A / A* at GCSE (and 90% A & B at A’Level) become classed as non-academic ? :shock:
Yes, they definitely do appear to be looking for the team players in preference to the pushier “shove-past-please-please-me-first-Miss” children. But let’s not forget that it is only the highest performers in the exams who get selected for interview (team player or not), for the 50 or so 11-plus entry places.
Many did not make it to the 2nd round, and were not selected for interview, purely on the basis of their exam result - because it is a very academic school :D


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2011 9:54 am 
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Location: Herts
Mango, Jigsaw was asking about the interview and I was answering the question about that, that it is not an academic interview, unlike City and Habs where my dd was asked maths questions in the interview. It is without question an academic school, in August some girls who had been at the school since they were 4 got B grades and were asked to leave the school and were not given places to stay on in the sixth form so it is very clear where the focus lies. St Albans turned down their money because they were concerned that their A level results might impact the league tables. It is our local indy and we know lots of girls there, about 12-15 in each yeqr. But I do have to say that we dont know anyone personally who has failed to get an interview but maybe that is self selecting because those who might not don't sit. We know three preps last year that were not allowed to stay onto the high school even though they had also been there since 4yrs. But the interview is not academic, my dd was selected for the scholarship tests last year so she sat another set of tests just before her interview , but the interview itself was all about working as a team. DG


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2011 12:14 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 19, 2011 8:02 pm
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Some interesting findings..and thanks for the information. It is always good to know.

After seeing some business like/over the top schools, this school didn’t come across like an ‘exam factory’ to us, but still producing good results. When I put my child through the top end 'selective school' route I am almost signing up to keep up the standard. I am not saying it is right, but that is the route I am signing up to take. It must have been very hard for those girls to leave the school and their friends.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2011 4:43 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 17, 2010 3:22 pm
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Location: Barnet
Many thanks DAOgroupie – you must have a very clever circle of friends :), I personally know of 2 children that have not been called for interview this year and also 1 from our old school last year. The school must be doing something right in the selection process to achieve nearly 90% at A/A*, as all the children at the school (even those that might be perceived as less academic) sit for the GCSEs and yet they achieve these results. Did both your DDs get to sit for the scholarship test papers ?

Jigsaw, I also agree that whichever indie offer we accepted, we too were of the view that, in effect we were almost signing up to keep up with the standard - particularly in view of the cost and "second mortgage" school fees we were comitting ourselves to :shock: .

Most of the academic indie schools like St Albans, that have a junior prep department (aged 4-11 years old) eg Habs, North London Collegiate, City of London Girls, South Hampsted, St Helens etc, have the same policy of letting you know, very early on, if your child will not be suited to the senior school (and vice versa - if the school will not suit your child). They are all very clear on their policy, that being in the junior school does not mean that they will automatically qualify for a place at the senior school regardless. Unfortunately all the schools above will have a few children who fall into this category each year :(.

I know it seems tough, but this seems a very sensible policy to me, especially as most of the children would have been assessed at 4+ entry (it is difficult to assess how academic a child will be at that very young age). If my DD was in that position I would want to know as early as possible in order to try to find the best place for her to thrive at 11+. On a positive note, thankfully this happens very rarely and most children do go on to progress to the senior school, if indeed they choose to.

Jigsaw, we were of the same view, during the open days, that St Albans did not come across like some of the “exam factory” schools - and thank goodness that view has proved to be spot on. It is such a happy school and certainly lives up to it’s reputation as having one of the best pastoral care systems around.

DAOgroupie - fingers crossed for you and your DD2 with Dame Alice Owen, assuming your 1st preference would be for her to join DD1.
Jigsaw - not sure which school is your 1st choice but wishing you all the best too.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 31, 2011 4:11 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 17, 2010 3:22 pm
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Location: Barnet
Wishing all those interviewing at St Albans High School for Girls, today and later this week, good luck.

To all DCs (all schools) and their parents still interviewing - hang in there - not long to go now before your well deserved break.
:D


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