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PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 7:50 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 10, 2011 12:05 pm
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Hi all

Our DS sat the 11+ exams at both Chigwell and Bancroft. He was offered a place at Chigwell and a 50% scholarship at Bancroft.

I understand DC's exam results depend very much on their performance on the exam day but I have to admit that we were shocked to learn DS was not called for a scholarship interview at Chigwell.

I emailed Chigwell to ask for DS's exam scores and was told they do not disclose this information.

I have spoken with DS's tutor about Chigwell, his opinion was that the school could be snobbish (DS is currently studying at a state school). It is not that we want to nag Chigwell for a scholarship and I know this would not be achievable anyway, in fact Chigwell has always been the bottom of our list out of the few indies DS applied to, but it would be good to know if there was any reason DS's exam performance did not even merit a scholarship interview.

Do we have any parents here or know of any DC who have state school background and got scholarship from Chigwell?

Many thanks


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:02 pm 
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Could it not be possible that there were better candidates that sat for Chigwell? :?


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:46 pm 
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did you say the school in question was bottom of your list? I wouldn't sweat over it.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 9:22 pm 
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Yummiemummie wrote:
did you say the school in question was bottom of your list? I wouldn't sweat over it.

Yes, the school was the bottom of our list. The reason we applied was to use it as a back up as it is to me the lowest in terms of academic ranking out of the few indies DS applied to. Comparing Chigwell with Bancroft, I would say Bancroft is more academic. So it is very strange that when DS managed to get a half fee scholarship and only an offer for a place in Chigwell.

Of course there could be better candidates than DS but most of the DC who applied to Chigwell would also apply to Bancroft. I hope most parents who know the three indies in the East London area agree with me that of the three, Bancroft should be most difficult to get in. For this reason, I am totally confused!


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 9:25 pm 
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Hmmm strange, but still your son's done brilliantly, sometimes there's just no rhyme or reason to it. Still youre in a great position, so pat yourself and DS on the back VP!


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 9:55 pm 
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Maybe your child knew that it wasn't a preferred option and didn't try as hard. I suspect that there were better candidates on the day though. It is also possible that your son got a larger than normal scholarship so that he would not go elsewhere if there are a number of schools, plus super selective grammar schools in the area.

DS sat for a scholarship to a school that claimed to give 50% to a top candidate. After his tests they said he was the brightest boy they had every seen but they only offered him 20% and his less able friend was given the same size of scholarship. When I probed them they said that they didn't think we'd take up the place :o so they offered us a token amount as they couldnt not offer him anything as he was the top candidate. I would have taken up the place but after that comment we turned them down.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 7:35 am 
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Hi Vivien

DD didn't sit the test at Chigwell as we had ruled it out due to distance, so I cannot comment on the test itself. However, there are other possibilities for why he didn't get asked back. For example - perhaps he had a slightly "off day" the day he sat the Chigwell test which affected his performance on the day or perhaps he was just more suited to the question type and format at the Bancroft exam and therefore excelled there.

Either way I would agree with other "Posters" he has done extraordinarily well to be offered a 50% scholarship at Bancroft. He must have been top 3 to 4 out of 500 to 600 candidates this is a great result. Don't worry about Chigwell and just think it is there loss.

Cheers
Boo


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 8:15 am 
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This seems like a really strange question to me. We do get ourselves in these states don't we. If he's got a scholarship for the school he wanted to go to then don't worry about it. Our DS was lucky enought to get scholarship offers at both and so I have some insight. I don't know whether it helps though. There were around 40 children at the Chigwell Scholarship interviews and there was a definite mix of state and prep school children. I cannot fathom how anyone could think the school is snobbish if you have been round it. They are the very essence of a modern public school that prides itself on educating well rounded children. If you have visited Westminster or St Paul's you will know that it has an entirely different feel. The likelihood is that he had a very good day at Bancroft and a not so good day at Chigwell. I do not know your DS, but perhaps he has a tendency to inconsistency and silly mistakes that make him excel in one paper and not the next ? Chigwell is definitely more interested in all round ability than just academic strength, so if he is not sporty and musical that might be your downfall. Their exams and interviews are also deliberately set to spot ability rather than tutoring, so if you fall into that category that might also be a reason. Bancroft are definitely more interested in children that can simply get through exams. I continue to fail to understand this concentration on academic results. Please, please choose the school that your DC is going to be happiest in. There isn't a school that we have considered that I don't feel confident will help our DS reach his ability. Some schools are just so obsessed with producing miraculous exam results that they insist on only taking the brightest children. It ought to be of no surprise to anybody that they then get the best results. How much better to produce a confident, well rounded child who is socially aware and able to stand his ground in any situation ?

Sorry, that was a bit of a rant that I hadn't intended, but there you go. Overall, he has the offer he wants from the school he wants. Whilst I personally question your reasoning it is really none of my business except I do know you should be very grateful and pleased with his perfomance, pat him on the back and accept the offer.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 9:34 am 
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I fully concur with CPM's analysis, with my child also considering these schools.

From what I've seen of the Headmaster of Chigwell, he is certainly not snobbish. I do believe that he is trying to change the ethos of the school slightly, while trying to maintain its reputation for being a friendly place to study. I suspect from those children I know who have and who have not had scholarship offers this year, it is not just academic achievement (although this is a major factor), but also how they might contribute to the school for the benefit of all the children there.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 10:45 am 
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The point about having questions that are open-ended is also very important. The scholarship DS will sit does not have a right or a wrong answer in some questions and they look at how a child aproaches the questions. Apparently (G55 may know more about this), there are ways to answer difficult maths problems in a more intelligent manner, even if another way gets the same result and this is factored in.Some of the scholarship papers that DS will do don't even have a maximum mark.


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