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 Post subject: Can anyone help us?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 6:55 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 11:23 pm
Posts: 435
Pretty sure the situation is hopeless but have read lots of good advice on here, so here goes.....

Our catchment area includes two grammar schools ( one boys, one girls) and a secondary modern school which has just come out of special measures.

Local parents tend to prefer another secondary modern school which is about nine miles away, and some send their children to the nearest comprehensive which is about five or six miles away (both out of area)

My DD looked around all schools and made the decision that the comprehensive was the best school for her. I asked the head what were the chances of her gaining a place there, and he said very high, as long as we put the school first on the list.

All through DDs primary school she has had exemplary reports and seemed to be a very high achiever. We persuaded her to take the eleven plus in order for her to make a decision based upon all the information available to her. However, when we saw DDs new teacher at the beginning of October, she seemed not to think so highly of her, and suggested that she was very weak in Maths. She also stated that her reading age had "gone backwards" We (somewhat naively , with hindsight) accepted this judgement and thought that maybe we had overestimated her ability.

When the results came through later in October, our DD had not passed the test, but had not failed by many either. So, given what the teacher at Primary had told us, and what the Head teacher from the comp said, we duly put the comp first. This basically excluded us from appealing to the Grammar, but at the time ,this seemed OK. We put the rural secondary modern second and the local school third. We had three criteria for selecting the schools:
1 DD has suffered from emotional and social developmental delay and
has had intervention from psychs etc for three years. Thankfully, she
has improved so much that she has now been discharged but we do not
want her to become so anxious again. Therefore we had to choose the
school which she felt was right ( we do have written documentation for
this)
2 OH is half German and wants kids to learn German - Comp is the only
place they can do this outside the Grammars
3 We want our children to go to a school where they will be stretched and
feel challenged by the work
(According to these criteria the grammar would have been second - but we couldn't put it on the form as mentioned above)

So we now come to allocation day. DD has been offered third choice school on the list ( fourth if you include Grammar.) We are very disappointed and asked primary school for a letter of support and her educational statistics so that we could appeal to get her into the comp. This is where I started to feel very sick about the whole situation.

Contrary to what we'd been told at the last parents' evening we find that our DD has a reading age of 15.1 years, excels across the curriculum, and has no area of weakness ( no mention of maths). Her year end standardised scores exceed those of her brother year on year from Y2-Y6. DS is actually a high flyer at the local boys GS.
We feel terrible.........
Had we known that there was actually no chance of her getting a place at the comp, we wouldn't have even put it on the form, and given that she was actually a high achiever, we would have chosen to appeal to the Grammar school. We have been told that there is virtually no chance of winning an appeal to go to the comp, but we are going to try.

Does anyone know anything that could help us. I'm pretty sure there isn't. Thank you for reading this any way, I think it has helped to get it off my chest.
:cry:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 8:18 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jan 08, 2008 7:24 pm
Posts: 24
Location: northfleet kent
Dear Bougalou I am sorry to hear of your situation, I think you should appeal, can you think of anything to back your appeal medical or just misleading info from your junior school. I wish you the best of luck x


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 9:07 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2008 7:47 am
Posts: 77
banksy, you could also post this on www.parentscentre.gov.uk - there is a forum for school admissions, with lots of admissions experts on hand for advice.

good luck.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 10:24 pm 
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Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2006 8:51 am
Posts: 8113
have pm'd u bougalou
herman


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 10:28 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 11:23 pm
Posts: 435
Thanks both for your replies.
We are appealing on the following grounds:

It may hinder dd's emotional and psychological wellbeing to be sent elsewhere ( backed up with medial documented evidence);

DD will not be able to study German which is an important part of our family heritage elsewhere

and DD will not receive sufficient academic challenge elsewhere.

Just hope it's enough. :?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 10:35 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 12, 2007 1:21 pm
Posts: 11936
I think you have strong grounds (especially your first reason) - do read the sticky if you have not already done so.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 10:41 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 7:10 pm
Posts: 8200
Location: Buckinghamshire
pooodle wrote:
you could also post this on www.parentscentre.gov.uk - there is a forum for school admissions, with lots of admissions experts on hand for advice.

good luck.


Aren't our experts good enough for you pooodle? :lol:

Hi Bougalou

I am very saddened by your case. Too many people give advice without really understanding the system - or updating themselves when it changes. I'm afraid that we see it all the time here.

I also sympathise with you on the teacher's comments. It is very poor for a teacher to make comments like that after only knowing the child for a very few weeks. They should learn to be more measured and to reserve judgment a little.

Two of your points (psychological help and German) will be very useful at a Transfer Appeal. The third about "wanting her to be stretched", etc, is unfortunately the case for everyone, and has no value at an Appeal.

You seem to have some good academic evidence as well, and that will be very helpful.

At an Appeal I would certainly present a synopsis of the poor advice you were given, but keep it as brief as possible. Panels do not like lengthy moans and groans about the system, but they will always listen to a clearly stated case where the parent has been given poor advice. You do need to tread very carefully though, as the person giving you the poor advice is also the Head of the comp that you are appealing for. A diplomatic minefield!

Please do read Etienne's wonderful Appeal Q&As and remember at all times that you have to make the strongest possible case for why the particular school you are appealing for should "inconvenience" itself for your daughter.

Is it too late to appeal for the Grammar?

I wish you the best of luck, and please do post back if we can be of further help.

Best wishes
Sally-Anne

P.S. Oh my, I see you've got Hermanmunster on your case now! How are the bolts these days Herman - well-oiled I hope? :D


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 Post subject: Re: Can anyone help us?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 10:45 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 13, 2007 8:03 pm
Posts: 1827
Location: Gloucestershire
Bougalou wrote:
This basically excluded us from appealing to the Grammar,


I feel for you. But why not apply to the grammar now, and appeal when they say no? At the appeal say why you didn't have the grammar at the top of the list.

Also appeal at the school that teaches German. Which brings me slightly off topic to:
Quote:
2 OH is half German and wants kids to learn German - Comp is the only place they can do this outside the Grammars


Having wandered around a lot of local schools last September / October, we found language teaching as rather odd. All of the local schools teach German, French and Spanish. French is taught to all. At all the schols, grammars included, the choice between German & Spanish depended which class you were in, as none had enough for a full time Spanish teacher, nor a full time German teacher. One secondary school taught German to the highest ability class / set. The others, grammars included, were random in which class learnt what. Seems odd, teaching two latin languages, when English is a low-germanic language with norman-french posh words tacked on!. Got verdammed - maar nederlands talen bent heel good. Varoom neit nederlands? So bizarre. (and apologies for my dutch - rather rusty and was never any good to start with).

_________________
Capers


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 10:46 pm 
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Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2006 8:51 am
Posts: 8113
:roll:

oooo a bit squeaky but been out for some more WD40....

:wink:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 10:47 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 11:23 pm
Posts: 435
Sally Anne, or maybe Herman if you are there.....

In our area the appeals for the grammar are made before the allocation is made. As we didn't include the grammar on our list, I didn't think that we could appeal for a place there. Thought we could only appeal for schools on the list. If you think I'm wrong, please tell me. I reckoned to have read the sticky but may not have found the right part......sorry, and thanks again.


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