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PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2006 10:53 am 
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Joined: Mon Nov 27, 2006 10:30 am
Posts: 2
Location: Bucks
hi - I've just joined the Forum as I've been glued all weekend to your excellent advice and am so amazed at all the time people give up to help and support others - thanks it has kept me going this weekend when I recieved the bad news on Friday that my son had only got 116/111 and therefore not got into the GS of his choice. After much sadness and disappointment on Friday I have been told by numerous friends that I must appeal as my Grandma passed away on Sept 2nd and the funeral was on Sept 15 92.5 wks before 1st exam) and my son was sure to pass we all thought.

Do you think we have grounds to appeal on? My Grandma was obviously my children's Great-Grandma, but as I'm a single parent, and my mother was widowed too, my Grandma was the real matriarch of the family and so very close to all of us 4 grandchildren (of whom i'm the eldest) and especially close to her 2 g-grandkids - of whom my 2 were the only ones. The whole family were actually by her bedside the whole night before she died - in hindsight I think that would have been very traumatic for both my children - (daughter is even younger, only 9) as she was in a coma with very shallow, noisy breathing etc. Then the funeral was completely overbearing, my son had to miss a Friday from school etc and the grief from the whole family was awful.

Perhaps I missed a trick - was it too much for him to get over in such a short space of time? His grades at school have always been good - predicted to pass his 11+ in Summer Term etc. Fantastic at English - not so good at maths. . but always tries hard etc. Doing well in other subjects too it seems from his books/reports. Received a school prize last yr for progress etc. A-team Rugby/football. Passed guitar grade 1 with merit etc etc so a happy middle of the road little boy who just didn't cope well on the day I think. I think the school will be supportive - making an appt with the head for today/tomorrow.

My concerns are that there is a disparity between the 2 marks - they are not that close together so less of a chance to say he nearly missed it. Also, he is a Sept baby so marked down because of that. Will the panel accept the situation with the death of a Great Grandparent causing so much unrest in the family in the month beforehand? how do I/should I prove to them what an important person she was in my kids lives? Should I focus on the academic details 1st or the bereavement?

Sorry to write such a long post, but I'm totally lost and have no-one else to turn to who can advise me.

Many thanks for any help you can offer me.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2006 12:12 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 7:10 pm
Posts: 8199
Location: Buckinghamshire
Hi Upset Mum

I am sorry you've had such a miserable weekend, and I'm glad you've found this forum.

The first and all important thing to demonstrate at an appeal is very high academic ability. From what you say, your son seems to put in a pretty good performance, and was predicted to pass his 11+, so give it a go at appeal, provided you really feel he will thrive at a GS.

When you see the Head, try to pin him down on his real view - does he feel your son is suitable? On what basis was he predicted to pass his 11+? What was the Head's ranking? (The Heads have to rank all the children in order of the likelihood of them passing the 11+, and if your son was in the top 10 it will be a big help to you, the top 20 is useful, outside of that you may be pushing water uphill.)

What you need to show is that your child has everything it takes to pass the 11+, and the end result was poor because of the loss of his Great Grandmother, in that order.

Start to work with the Head on facts and figures - predicted SATs, past test results - general and VR/NVR, evidence of strong schoolwork, etc. Your case needs to be hard-nosed! Extra-curricular interests have only a very small part to play - the Merit at Guitar Grade 1 is worth a brief mention, as it shows good application to work and practice. Likewise the Progress Prize, but leave the rest out and only mention them if asked at the actual appeal.

As you will know from the bumf that Bucks send out, the chances of a successful appeal on 116 are not brilliant, but if you think your son is right for GS and the Head agrees, give it a go - you have nothing to lose.

Good luck!

Sally-Anne


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2006 1:02 pm 
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Joined: Mon Nov 27, 2006 10:30 am
Posts: 2
Location: Bucks
Thanks Sally Anne
your words of advice give me strength to get through the next stage - I will take your advice on board and let you know what the Head says after my meeting.
Thanks for your help - very much appreciated. Upset Mum


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2006 4:13 pm 
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Joined: Mon Dec 12, 2005 5:26 pm
Posts: 7059
Dear Upset Mum

I agree absolutely with all Sally-Anne's sound advice - there needs to be a really good academic case.

As far as the extenuating circumstances are concerned, the panel will want to be persuaded that you are not just trying to convince yourself that this is the explanation for the scores. What proof is there that your son was affected? - sleepless nights/bedwetting, and a visit to the GP? Or will the school give written evidence that they noticed a deterioration in his schoolwork in the period leading up to the tests?

I'm just looking at this in the hardheaded way a panel might!

Best wishes

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Etienne


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 Post subject: Success!
PostPosted: Sat Feb 03, 2007 7:49 pm 
To everyone on this Forum - I thought I should share with you all my fantastic news today - that my son had a sucessful appeal hearing. To say over the moon is an understatement!

I owe so much of my thanks to everyone on this Forum - it has been my lifeline and given me so much knowledge and courage. I really couldn't have prepared my case half so well if I hadn't had such wonderful guidance and advice from everyone.

It just goes to show that positive results CAN be acheived on a score of 116/111!

The wonderful (Etienne and Sally Anne especially) contributors to this site have offered me such good advice (academic ability 1st, sound mitigating circumstances and a well prepared appeal speech) that I was already on track to wow the panel.

To all of you, on behalf of my son and his future education, I thank you all. Best of luck to those still waiting for results too, I'm hoping that you too will be feeling as happy as I am tonight!

My thoughts are with those who were not successful this time and I wish you every luck with the path you tread from my on with your children. Remember the magic phrase used many times on this site, that I kept saying to myself....'the cream will rise to the top'.

Ecstatic Mum


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 03, 2007 8:20 pm 
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Joined: Mon Dec 12, 2005 5:26 pm
Posts: 7059
Thank you for your kind words, Upset Mum No Longer!

Wonderful news - Well done indeed!

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Etienne


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 04, 2007 10:51 am 
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Joined: Sat Sep 30, 2006 10:14 am
Posts: 171
Location: Lincolnshire
Excellent News Upset Mum


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 04, 2007 5:36 pm 
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Joined: Sun Oct 29, 2006 10:04 am
Posts: 144
Ooohhh wow! Excellent news! I'm so pleased for you!


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 06, 2007 9:31 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 7:10 pm
Posts: 8199
Location: Buckinghamshire
Hi Upset Mum (No Longer!)

I am very pleased to hear your news, and thank you for your kind comments.

Please do come back to the Forum in future to help other parents, if you have the time. Your advice and experience could help many parents and children in similar situations.

Best wishes
Sally-Anne


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