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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2007 12:49 pm 
Hi there

I am going to an appeal for my son in 2 weeks time and need to know if I can mention that our school is not in support of the 11+ system.

Our school performs poorly in comparison to other local schools and the pass rate is very low. No encouragement or support is given and no coaching (unlike our local schools). The head and class teacher have not been at all supportive and our son has not been academically challenged at all since he went to the school. I could not change schools as I had another child at the infant school and was unable to get places for both at a more academic school.

The test conditions and practice conditions were also terrible which unnerved my son completely. I wrote letters of complaint to the school at the time which I have copies of. Am I able to site this as I feel my son's case is not helped by the attitude of the school?

Many thanks
Anxious Mother!


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2007 2:50 pm 
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Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2006 1:46 pm
Posts: 374
Location: Bucks
Sympathise with you big time. Am not in quite as bad position with our school but still get really frustrated when I hear about neighbouring schools attitude to 11+, how encouraging they are etc.

However, if you read back on other 'Appeal' threads, it seems the general consensus is, if you criticise your school/head, the panel may well take up the point, but may then doubt what the head has written/recommended about your own child - I think it could backfire on you big time, however tempting it may be to prove your point.

There are some great people on this forum who will be able to reply to you with their experiences (from all angles).

Good luck and keep in touch

x


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2007 5:10 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 7:10 pm
Posts: 8206
Location: Buckinghamshire
Hi Guest

How very frustrating for you!

The argument about the lack of coaching by the school is, unfortunately, of no use to you at an Appeal. Bucks CC's view is that all the preparation that is needed for the 11+ is the practice papers that the children take in September.

However, if the test conditions were really bad, take copies (5 of each, plus your original) of your letters with you. Has the Head replied to you, or acknowledged your letters? Take copies of those too.

If you post more information about the test conditions, plus details of your son's case (results, ranking, etc) we may be able to help you further.

Good luck
Sally-Anne


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 06, 2007 6:11 pm 
Dear Sally Anne

my son has been given a 3 3 from the school and ranked 8th in order of suitability out of 53. He actually came 6th in his year and has been assessed as a 5b in reading and comp in Sept 06. His predicted grades are 5's for all subjects. His CAT score was 116.

11+ results 117 and 109 with extenuating circumstances regarding my father being rushed into hospital the night before and also the childrens father was moving away.

The school test conditions were 3 to a table with my very quiet son sat with the naughtiest boy in the year who continually misbehaved. My son did pass the practice papers but his emotional state was so bad by the tests he did well to even get 117.

I do not know why our school has rated him so poorly as he has always been the top of his year group and his reports are always outstanding. He is self motivated and thrives in a challenging environment. Unfortunately he has had the same form teacher since year 5 who he has never got on well with (very unusual for him). The teacher and the head were realy discouraging and clearly not in support of the appeal. The head's report does include the extenuating circumstances and also states that they back the parents request for a grammar school place.

I have the letters I wrote in to the school about the poor test conditions which they only responded to verbally and all of the medical evidence too. I have also sent in copies of school reports, SATS grades and music reports.

Should I take the marked practice papers in to the appeal to show my son had no problem with these?

Many thanks for your advice.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 06, 2007 9:04 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 7:10 pm
Posts: 8206
Location: Buckinghamshire
Hi FM

This is not an easy case, but some of the best points are:

Your son was ranked 3:3, but was 8th on the OoS out of 53. That means that either the Head is in charge of a very poor school, or s/he has got something wrong. What happened to the children above and below him in the OoS? Did they pass or not?

Extenuating circumstances - yes, your father being rushed into hospital the night before is significant, provided your son was close to him. Father moving away - did that happen in the immediate lead-up to the 11+ or was it planned a long time before?

You mention medical evidence - was that for your father, or for your son?

I fell into the trap last year of trying to introduce too many ideas into my appeal. Please don't make the same mistake. Try to look at what you have in the way of academic evidence, first and foremost. Make the best points you can from that.

Then look at all the other factors, and rank them in order of influence on your son's results.

Please come back to us for more help. If you register on the Forum you can send me a private message (PM) and I would be happy to help you if I can.

Sally-Anne


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