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PostPosted: Thu Nov 30, 2006 5:49 pm 
I am drafting the appeal letter for my son Thomas. I have taken note of Etienne's advice about letters, and see she says it's not worth highlighting anything that's not academic. I had thought of pointing out that Thomas has very successfully juggled his classwork/exams with a lot of sporting and musical achievements. I can back this up with his school report, which mentions several times that he has not let his music etc detract from high achievements academically. I thought that this would just highlight that he is very motivated and a high achiever. Obviously this is not the main thrust of our arguments, but I thought it added something useful - I'd be grateful for advice on this, as we have no extenuating circumstances, but will have a very strong letter of support from the head plus good academic results/predictions, and he got 120.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 30, 2006 6:48 pm 
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Joined: Mon Dec 12, 2005 5:26 pm
Posts: 7063
Dear Jemma

This sounds like a Buckinghamshire appeal.

Before replying, may I ask what the other score was?

Regards

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Etienne


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 30, 2006 11:41 pm 
Yes - sorry - he got 114 in the other paper


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 01, 2006 12:17 am 
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Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 7:10 pm
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Location: Buckinghamshire
Hi Jemma

Your task is to prove that the 120 is the closest indicator of his potential and the 114 an unfortunate blip. To do that, academic arguments must be paramount.

However, as his academic/extra-curricular balance is mentioned in his school report I would attach a copy of the relevant part, provided his achievements really merit a mention. Refer to it briefly - "His school report mentions ... - he achieved X grade piano with merit and came 3rd in the County Cross Country tournament" for example. One strong sentence will work harder than a long list of achievements.

Sally-Anne


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 01, 2006 12:49 am 
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Dear Jemma

I agree with Sally-Anne. If you attach a report, the panel can read it for themselves. No need to let this intrude into your letter of appeal.

However, if the headteacher's support is strong enough to convince the panel that 120 is a better indication of ability than 114, I have one further thought.

I would not normally suggest using "lack of preparation for the 11+" as extenuating circumstances, because it is likely to be dismissed out of hand, - but the official NFER view is that extra preparation could make a marginal difference. Assuming your son was not receiving extra help, you could argue that, although he coped very well in combining schoolwork with extra curricular activities, perhaps the latter did affect his 11+ performance. If he had taken time out to focus a little more on getting ready for the tests, then the marginal improvement acknowledged by NFER could well have been achieved.

Regards

_________________
Etienne


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