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PostPosted: Wed Apr 09, 2008 8:00 pm 
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Joined: Wed Apr 09, 2008 6:53 pm
Posts: 6
Location: ESSEX
I'm not sure whether I'm putting this in the right place as I've never posted anything before.....I am appealing for a place at WHSB Grammar. We are out of catchment and my son had a weighted score of 310.288. The 'passmark' for the local boys was 303 but obviously I realise that many will have scored more than this and more than my son. He has an older brother at the school and when I rang the school about appealing they told me that 2 appeals were upheld last year and both of those had brothers in the school. They have sent me a form which is entitled 'Appeal against non admission'. This form has 7.5 lines for you to state your case under the title 'Summary of Reason for Appeal and any Special Circumstances'. The school have sent a letter to say that there are 28 indications for appeal. 8 for boys in catchment and 20 for outside. The 8 inside have all scored lower than the 303 mark. The 20 outside have marks ranging from 317.71 to 282.5. My son let himself down in his Maths. He scored 14/38 for this subject. His English score was 27/50 and VR 52/80. He lacks confidence in Maths for this we had a tutor. She was a senior school teacher but she was not coaching him for eleven plus. I was trying to do that myself. Sadly his tutor died unexpectedly at the end of August (she was only 42). This was a huge shock to us but our son took it very badly indeed. His confidence went out of the window and he was having trouble sleeping etc. He wanted to do the eleven plus for her as much as himself. We got him another tutor who used to be the deputy head of his current school. He took time to build a relationship with her and spent several sessions in tears as she brought back memories for him. We told his school teacher when he went back to school in September as he really was in such a state. His new tutor told us he clearly had the potential but some weeks he was excellent and others he was all over the place. I was going through a very stressful time at work as our office was closing and redundancy was threatened. This ended up with me being off work with stress late Sept early Oct. Then on top of all this I had to go into hospital for a hernia op on 31 Oct. This meant my sons routine was disrupted again as I had to organise different people to take him to and from school etc. This really was all ongoing until the week before the eleven plus. The day before the eleven plus we had a TV crew filming in our house who were supposed to be done and dusted by the time he got home from school but they over ran and the nice calming evening I had planned went to pot! He was extremely nervous on the day of the test particularly about his maths which he felt was his worst subject. As it happens it clearly was. I have read through your appeals forum and pulled out his school reports and books. His maths books whilst having a lot of ticks in them don't have any nice comments only poor ones where he has been untidy or not finished. His Year 2 sats only gave him a 2 so non of this is really in his interest to submit. I have spoken to the head and his his teacher who happens to be the deputy and both have said they will support me in an appeal. Since Christmas he has come on leaps and bounds. Life is now settled and he has moved up to the 'top table' for all subjects. His teachers predict level 5 for SATS (albeit a ropey one for English). He (and I) are really proud of how he is now achieving. He is not top of the class but he is certainly in the top 10. 6 girls in his class got grammar school places this year but none of the boys got into any grammar schools. He was disappointed that he didn't get in. The local comp is fine but we have an existing bullying issue on his route to school from some older boys. His first words when he knew he was going there was in relation to this and he is worrying about it already. We have booked an appointment to see the head of year about this already. My problem is what do I put in my 7.5 lines on my form. I can't just put he under performed and he is expected to get a level 5 but I don't want to bombard them with all my personal problems. Also do I have to do a draft letter as an example for his head and his teacher. Whilst I know they will only tell the truth, I want it to help my case. His new tutor said she will do him a letter as well. I know it's still only a slim chance but knowing the work they do at this school, I know he is now ready for it. Sorry to drone on so much but my appeal has to be in Mon week and I don't want to mess it up!


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 09, 2008 8:20 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 12, 2007 1:21 pm
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Can you not attach extra information? Most appeal forms allow this - then you can just write a brief summary of the key points e.g. predicted level 5s, disruption in the lead up to the test etc.

I would not say much about the tutor - but your ill health will clearly be a strong point though.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 09, 2008 8:58 pm 
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Joined: Mon Dec 12, 2005 5:26 pm
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I agree - nothing to stop you writing "Please see attached sheet" if you need more space.

If you need more time to prepare, don't worry about the appeal deadline - just write "I am appealing on the basis of disruption prior to the 11+ and strong academic progress since - full details of case to follow".

I would make this the basis of your appeal:
"He has come on leaps and bounds. Life is now settled and he has moved up to the 'top table' for all subjects."

It might not be diplomatic to draft a letter for the school, but tell them that you hope to make a case on the basis of recent academic progress, and anything they can write to support this would be helpful. If they were aware of your son being upset or dispirited in the lead up to the 11+, that would be useful. Unhelpful comments are "What a nice boy he is," "What a wonderful monitor," and "What a great games player!".

Focus on academic progress. Don't say too much about extenuating circumstances, apart from "disruption" at this stage (better to let them draw the details out of you at the hearing), but attach proof of your hospitalisation (e.g. the letter giving you your date of admission) and any written evidence that the TV film crew were working at your house the day before the test.

Hope this is of some help.

_________________
Etienne


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 10, 2008 11:01 am 
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Joined: Wed Jan 02, 2008 12:18 pm
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Location: kent
Oh and please use some paragraphs in your appeal submission. I found your original post with no paragraphs terribly hard to read.

Good luck.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 10, 2008 1:23 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 04, 2008 9:53 am
Posts: 7
Hi Amex,
Have you checked with the LEA where your son is on the waiting list for WHSB?
Places are awarded from this for some time yet.
Worth a 'phone call.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 10, 2008 6:11 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 27, 2008 3:44 pm
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Location: chelmsford
I don't know if the panel takein account the raw scores but try and find out other VR scores as whilst maths was low i suspect the VR score had moreof an impact on the standardised score. If the panel see the raw scores do they look moreclosely at the VR as this is suposed to be a better indicator of potential and you can then talk about a blip if necessary?


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 10, 2008 6:29 pm 
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Joined: Wed Apr 09, 2008 6:53 pm
Posts: 6
Location: ESSEX
Thank you all very much for your advice. I have checked the waiting lists and am aware that they will continue to move but can't afford to take any chances.

I am particularly grateful to you, Etienne. I have read a lot that you have put on this site and it is extremely helpful. I'm sure many people appreciate the time and effort you put in.

I was a bit worried about mentioning the TV crew as I felt the panel could see this as a negative, ie self inflicted. I do have proof they were here. Anyway, I feel a lot more focused now so I should be able to compose something appropriate.

I'm also really grateful about what to 'suggest' to the school. This can only help them to focus too.

Thanks again everyone.

PS Sorry about the lack of paragraphs in my first post. It was late at night and I wasn't aware I could get marked for it!!!!!!


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 10, 2008 6:42 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 30, 2008 10:05 pm
Posts: 660
AMEX wrote:

PS Sorry about the lack of paragraphs in my first post. It was late at night and I wasn't aware I could get marked for it!!!!!!


Well at least you've retained a sense of humuor :wink: Good luck


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 10, 2008 7:26 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jan 08, 2008 7:24 pm
Posts: 24
Location: northfleet kent
We all know what you mean once anyone starts a story you just want to get it all in. No-one is judging you on paragraphs (we will leave that to the children to get right) ha ha ha.
Some people alter lighten up !!!!
Anyway GOODLUCK !!!!


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 11, 2008 10:59 am 
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Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 7:10 pm
Posts: 8206
Location: Buckinghamshire
banksy1 wrote:
No-one is judging you on paragraphs (we will leave that to the children to get right) ha ha ha.
Some people alter lighten up !!!!


Hi Banksy1

I don't feel that Perplexed's comments were out of order in the least. I was trying to read AMEX's post on a small and unfamiliar laptop screen. Unfortunately I had to give up and leave it to others to reply.

AMEX - thank you for the para breaks! :D

I wish you the best of luck in sorting out your son's situation.

Sally-Anne


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