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PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2012 11:42 am 
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Kent area
VR 133
NVR 130
Maths 102
Planning on appealing to 2 grammars

I am wondering how best to word my letter and presentation, I have the schools support but I feel very strongly that it is because of the schools poor teaching (or lack of teaching support) that we are in this position.

It is the largest primary in our area with a very high intake of children whose first language is not English and the teachers have not been given sufficient training or support to deal with this and as a direct result the standards have slipped fantastically. In the last 3 years the amount of children gaining a grammar recommendation has been 3, 2, and 7 respectively out of a possible 160 year 6 children. They either had some very bright children this year or there has been some extra tuition going on ;)

We had consultations where we looked at practice test results and ours were 126 VR 138 NVR and 99 maths. I asked the head teacher why he thought her score was so much lower in maths and did he plan on reviewing the maths teaching? He replied that she wasn't working hard enough in the tests and I should go to WHSmiths and buy some practice papers. He had the scores register in front of him and DD's was the 2nd highest maths score after a score of 102.

DD is in the top set for maths and they do not consider her to be struggling at all. I have been told off the record by 2 teachers that they are expecting ofsted any day and they fully expect to have their good recommendation changed to satisfactory or even special measures.

In year 5 DD was not in the top set as teacher (also her form teacher) felt that it would be good for her confidence to be working at the very top of that level, as she has always been quite wary of maths. We discussed this and I agreed without considering the ramifications, so when the work was sent off for the HT's review the work was not evidence of a high enough level!

Parents evening is tomorrow I will post her current levels etc.

Obviously I don't want to go in there and slag off the school, how can I best say that she has not reached her full potential at her primary?

Any advice appreciated, also on appealing to 2 grammars! We have a much better chance of gaining a place on appeal at 1 but the other has much better art and music facilities which are 2 subjects I think she will want at GCSE.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2012 12:27 pm 
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With regard to the maths, you have the extenuating circumstances, but there are two problems:

    1. You need to tread cautiously because panels tend not to like too much negativity (and I sense you realise this).
    2. Academic evidence is much, much more important than extenuating circumstances, so I'm afraid it's likely you would still have to show considerable academic potential in this area. The NVR score is a reasonable indicator of innate ability for maths, but is there anything else? Was the maths problem also evident in infants, or did she manage to get a level 3 at KS1? Does the school do CATs, and if so what were her scores for both NVR and quantitative reasoning?

Quote:
Any advice appreciated, also on appealing to 2 grammars!
All you need to know should be in the Q&As:
http://www.elevenplusexams.co.uk/appeal ... -school#c2

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2012 12:37 pm 
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I have her year 3 end of term report, reading NC level 4, writing level 3A, maths level 3C. I don't think they do CATs will find out tomorrow.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2012 6:30 pm 
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Hello again, back from consultation, DD's maths has gone from a 3A in September to 4C so obviously still not fantastic but quite an improvement I thought? Her reading, writing and science are now 5C and her reading age was 12.6+ (apparently that is the highest level they bother testing to at her school.) Teacher said she is exceptional at literacy - especially creative writing and gifted in art.
They do not do CATs.

School are still supportive of an appeal and have had successful appeals from poorer results apparently.

I still want to go ahead with both appeals, I am unsure what to say! Obviously the appeals wont be for a while, should I be tutoring her in maths to try and gain another level beforehand?


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2012 7:27 pm 
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One sub-level per half-year would be considered normal progression.

Any extra input into maths might be worth doing for its own sake?

If you read the Q&As, you'll see that it's the evidence that matters, not what you say .........

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2012 8:48 pm 
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Has the school been inspected by Ofsted recently? A comment from a recent report highlighting 'issues' might help.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2012 10:04 pm 
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2009, I am crossing my fingers and toes that they come in time ;)


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 19, 2012 5:33 pm 
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Deputy head has written us a letter which is a bit faffy, saying what a nice member of the school dd is etc. Although she has included expected SATs levels and talent in literacy should I ask her to re-write without the mention of what a kind and friendly child she is or will the panel just skim over this? Also our Head is retiring at the end of the school year which is (I assume) why the DH has written it (she also did the initial HT's appeal/review.) Should I push for the heads written support or will deputy head be as good. Feeling rather frustrated as I know from having family at the school for many years that the head in question has supported many successful appeals and the deputy hasn't been involved in any.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 19, 2012 6:05 pm 
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It might be worth trying the head - to see if he/she can come up with a more appropriate letter.
You could try flattery - "I know how really experienced you are at this sort of thing ......."! :)

However, I feel sure the panel would skim over anything irrelevant. What matters is whether the important information is all there.

The things to look out for are set out here:
http://www.elevenplusexams.co.uk/appeal ... cation#b48

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 20, 2012 9:00 am 
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Location: East Kent
I don`t know which schools in Kent you`re appealing to but that will probably make a difference to the outcome.

We appealed citing the schools failure in maths as the reason she didn`t pass. We were of the opinion anyway, as was her year 6 teacher, who was quite outspoken about it.

In the January before the appeal we were handed a gift, OFSTED put our primary into special measures....specifically stating they were failing year 4 and 5 chilldren in maths and literacy.

We were successful at appeal....we definately wouldn`t have been in west Kent.
The appeal panel were lovely and very interested in the OFSTED and its implacations.

Go over your most recent OFSTED with a fine tooth comb and there may be something in there
For the record...she got 109 in her maths and a 4c in her year 6 SATS....shes now in YR8 and has just got a 7a in her maths.....so I know we were right to appeal.

Good luck


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