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PostPosted: Thu Jun 27, 2013 8:56 am 
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I've been an avid follower of this forum for ages, and it's provided me with so much advice. I have now plucked up the courage to ask my first question!

MY DS is in Y5 state primary and we are applying for a selective indy for Y7 entry. He is top of class in maths, and up in the top few for English. However, this year he hasn't really been stretched, and has "gone off the boil" a bit. I am starting to get worried whether he will pass the entrance exams. School do nothing to help prep for entrance exams obviously, so it is all down to me, and I have no clue as to how he really compares against other children.

DS2 (Y3) is a very different child, and we plan to move him to a local prep school in Sept as we think he will benefit from much smaller class sizes.

However, a spanner has been thrown in the works, as a place in the same prep school has just come up in Y6, and we are wondering whether we would be better off moving DS1 also, and deferring entry to indy until 13. Pros = he will be stretched much more, prep school prepares for entrance exams, school more local so won't have longer day until he is older. But we are wondering whether it is more difficult to get in at 13 rather than 11. And of course there will be the upset of moving schools now (although he will have to do that anyway in Y7 as none of his friends going to indy)

I am so confused. Can anyone offer any advice? :?


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 27, 2013 9:27 am 
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Location: Reading
It depends on both the schools involved. The Indie I know well does take at 13+ but the vast majority will be there from 11+ and the head says that the 13+ ones do tend to struggle in getting up to the standard required and it takes quite a lot of extra input from the school to get them on a level footing. If the prep is really operating at the same level as the Indie then you should be fine but if not then you might make Y9 a tough one for your DC just when they should be settling in nicely and thinking about options


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 27, 2013 9:37 am 
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The school is Abingdon. They take slightly more children at 13 than at 11, so he wouldn't be on his own by any menas. But they pretest in the October of Y7 so don't know whether DS will be on a level playing field by then with the other children who have been at prep for ages. But I don't want him to further stagnate where he is :(


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 27, 2013 10:06 am 
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Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2010 9:54 am
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I was in similar situation, i moved my ds from local independent (not prep) to a prep school in his y6 summer term so that he can be prepared for Common entrance exam. he settled well in new school and now will be going to Oratory school

Abingdon school is a selective school and expects good academic standards from the new boys

You may need to tutor ur ds and he may try for 11+ now and if he gets through 11+ then fair enough, he can also try 13+ pre-test. I imagine 13+ pretest may slightly be less demanding than 11+

You may also have other back up options for 13+ in case if ds does not get thru 11+ /13+pretest. schools like St Edwards , oxford may be considered for backup option


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2013 12:05 am 
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Location: Herts
Hello, this is an interesting question that will vary from region to region. At our local indy that takes at both 11 and 13, the local preps have a gentlemen agreement with the school that the school will not poach at 11 and in return they guarantee them places at 13. The preps are completely focused on the indy and have a very poor record of getting any students into the state selectives because they only focus on the indy format. Those students from state primaries who prepare for the state selective exams that are much harder always get offers and often scholarships from the local indy as the selective exams are a lot harder. Nobody from our old primary has ever failed to get an offer from the indy. You say you have no clue how your ds compares to his cohort but you do not mention his sats levels, that should give you a very strong indication. I would move him to the prep if they focus on the indy you are interested in and I would also sit the 11 plus exams. In my opinion it would always be better to get to your secondary school in Y7 rather than Y9. I have sent you a pm. DG


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2013 7:29 am 
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Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 5:27 pm
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Location: london
Daogroupie wrote:
Hello, this is an interesting question that will vary from region to region.
OP has said the school is Abingdon DG, so slight majority intake at 13, and no local selective states. OP, difficult decision. Both mine got into selective states and indies from an average state primary. However, on reflection, they were bored rigid for the last year or two and might have benefited from the independence they would have gained from slightly less rigid/structured environment of the local prep feeder and the chance to go further off curriculum. However, that is one primary and one prep, the opposite cold be true elsewhere and it really all depends on the school and your local options. Good luck.

_________________
mad?


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2013 9:37 am 
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Joined: Wed Jan 04, 2012 7:04 pm
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Thank you everyone for your feedback - very useful. Our state primary are not very forthcoming about SATs levels. I'm still trying to find out how he did in his optional SATs this year, but they will give in eventually and tell me :wink: Don't know why it has to be so secretive. End of year 4 he was a 4a/5c maths, 4b reading and 4c writing.

Prep does feed into Abingdon, and has a pretty good record at doing so, but is not the primary feeder to that school as there is another prep (too far away for us) which is the main feeder school.

Mad? That is my worry that he will be bored rigid in Y6 - and probably still be bored in Y7 if he just goes to local comp.

Daogroupie - Thanks for the PM. There is no prep for state selective in my area, so that is why don't really know where he is against others who will be sitting the test. I am told SATs prep is very different from the sort of questions they will face in the selection exam. Out of interest, why do you think it is better to go to secondary at Y7 than Y9?


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 03, 2013 9:25 am 
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If your child fails the 13+ then his state school options will be limited so the popular schools probably won't have open places. This is something that you need to consider.


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 03, 2013 2:04 pm 
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Does anybody really "fail" 13+? I was under the impression when you get into the CE system the prep school will decide where your child should go and you do as you're told if you know what's good for you; if a child is not expected to perform well the prep tailors their (your) choices accordingly. But I agree that if you don't like what the prep school proposes at that stage your options are very limited.


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 03, 2013 4:18 pm 
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13+ pretest failure is possible but not 13+ CE


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