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 Post subject: Preferred school appeal
PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2008 8:07 am 
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Joined: Fri Oct 03, 2008 6:33 pm
Posts: 29
Location: Kent
Hello everyone,
Here I am, early morning again, after a night of this going round and round in my head...this whole 11+/secondary transfer thing has been at the forefront of my mind for too long!!!

My query is this:
We are expecting to have to appeal for our first choice school as we live 9 miles away from it. In Sept 07 about 4 girls from our, and neighboring villages, got into the school and people never questioned getting in from here.
Last year the school was apparently 'oversubscribed by girls who had passed the test' as we were told at the open morning last month. (prob. down to the outstanding ofsted they received in 2007.
Would girls from our area have got in or not? I don't know as there were no girls last year who tried to go there from our primary school. It was a tiny year group with only 2 girls and they applied to different schools anyway) The lady from the admissions advice of our LEA seems to think it is harder to get in from futher away now...

Our DD passed really well, with 420, but we live 9 miles away.
I know of a girl who lives closer to the school and whose sister already attends the school but she was about 3 points short of 'passing' the 11+.
The Mum of the girl says that she is confident that she will get her DD in on appeal as her other DD is already attending and they live in the catchment area.
So, when or if we go to appeal, do you think that she has a stronger chance of getting in than our DD?
I'm just wondering what our chances of getting in are and if it is the case that even if you are borderline if you already have a sibling at the school your chances are greater to get in than someone who passed the test but lives out of catchment. (we aren't out of area as such though)
The school is a non-susperselective by the way...
Sorry for the long rambling post...but it is just as garbled in my head at the moment!


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 30, 2008 8:26 am 
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Joined: Mon Dec 12, 2005 5:26 pm
Posts: 7059
I'll give you my view for what it's worth. If I were on the panel, I would deal first with the issue of non-qualification. If we were to decide the child should be deemed "qualified", and assuming score is not one of the oversubscription criteria, she would then be in exactly the same situation as all the other children who have qualified but not got a place.

Each case would then be considered on its own merits (do the reasons for needing a place outweigh the prejudice to the school?), without any comparison between cases.

According to the Code, only if the panel is contemplating the possibility of upholding more appeals than it feels the school can cope with is there to be a comparison between cases (the strongest are upheld until the point is reached where the panel decides the school could not cope with any more).

If your daughter has a very high score, you could try arguing this shows that only a grammar school would meet her academic needs. However, the emphasis ought to be on "Why this particular school?"

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Etienne


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Oct 30, 2008 6:54 pm 
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Joined: Fri Oct 03, 2008 6:33 pm
Posts: 29
Location: Kent
Thanks Etienne...it is going to be a long wait until 'offers day' in March :?


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 30, 2008 7:31 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 7:10 pm
Posts: 8199
Location: Buckinghamshire
Hi wonderingmum

I have great sympathy for you, and for everyone in Kent, at the dreadfully extended wait that you now face until the allocations and appeals come round. That is one of the unfortunate side-effects of the change to the timing of the 11+ in the area.

I am no expert on Kent, especially since the recent changes, but the following comment really got my hackles up!:

wonderingmum wrote:
I know of a girl who lives closer to the school and whose sister already attends the school but she was about 3 points short of 'passing' the 11+.

The Mum of the girl says that she is confident that she will get her DD in on appeal as her other DD is already attending and they live in the catchment area.


In my humble opinion, this lady is being blithely over-confident at the moment.

Unless the 11+ score enters into the over-subscription criteria for your preferred school (which, I am guessing from your post, it does not), your DD is clearly ahead of this lady's daughter at the present time - your DD passed, and hers did not.

You will at least be given a place on the waiting list automatically if the school is over-subscribed, whereas she will not. She will definitely have to fight an appeal, you may not have to.

I really hope that you don't have to. :D

Good luck!

Sally-Anne


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 30, 2008 9:13 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 13, 2007 8:03 pm
Posts: 1827
Location: Gloucestershire
I concur with Sally-Anne.

I tend to take very little notice of a sibling attending the school if the appellant hasn't passed the test; it may be inconvenient for the parents, but - well - it would be a lot more inconvenient for the staff and the children who passed if a below standard pupil got in. Unless they had a very good reason that they didn't pass.

I've heard appeals in the past where the grandfather, father, and two siblings have all attended the school, but it was not something we gave that much weight to - tradition isn't important!

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Capers


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 31, 2008 11:10 am 
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Joined: Fri Oct 03, 2008 6:33 pm
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Location: Kent
Thanks Sally-Anne and Capers123...that is more reassuring....
It is a dreadfully long wait though... :(
Where's a crystal ball when you need one!!!?


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 31, 2008 12:16 pm 
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Joined: Sat Feb 25, 2006 1:21 am
Posts: 2125
Sally-Anne wrote:
Unless the 11+ score enters into the over-subscription criteria for your preferred school (which, I am guessing from your post, it does not), your DD is clearly ahead of this lady's daughter at the present time - your DD passed, and hers did not.

Sally-Anne


WM - it's the same in Bucks - sibling priority DOES feature in the oversubscription criteria BUT only if the younger sibling has passed the test or successfully appealed against non-selection.

wonderingmum wrote:
Thanks Sally-Anne and Capers123...that is more reassuring....
It is a dreadfully long wait though... :(
Where's a crystal ball when you need one!!!?


Ah - the crystal ball. If you find one, please let me know, as we are also in for a long and stressful wait - even if DD passes! :)

Good luck.

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Marylou


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 31, 2008 6:57 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 11:23 pm
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Capers, what would you make of two siblings who also "failed" the eleven plus but are performing in the top three of the four of their year group in Grammar schools ( 1 got in on appeal, the other is at a selective independent)? Do you think it might make you think that perhaps for this family, the test is not an accurate assessment of their future performance, or am I clutching at straws?
Bougalou


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 31, 2008 8:10 pm 
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Joined: Fri Oct 03, 2008 6:33 pm
Posts: 29
Location: Kent
Hmmm...Bougalou...I get what your're saying about the sibling thing in some cases but I kind of agree with Sally-Anne and Capers123 that having a sibling at grammar shouldn't really be a factor in 'non-qualification' appeal.
Interestingly, the Mum I was talking to, with the older DD already at the school of choice, told me that her youngest DD, who missed the mark by 3 points, 'is bright but, unlike her eldest, was lazy and didn't want to do much revision or practice' (She told me that before the results had come out actually as she was a bit worried that her DD wouldn't pass.)
She also said, when the results were out, that she thought DD would get in on appeal as 'the school know her older DD'
Just seems wrong to me, as she herself has described them to me as quite different characters.


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 31, 2008 8:57 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 7:10 pm
Posts: 8199
Location: Buckinghamshire
She should thank her lucky stars that her DDs came in that order! :lol:

My DSs came in the opposite order, and I sometimes feel that I spend all my time trying to point out that DS2 isn't actually a clone of DS1, and that he just might be a bit better organised, a bit more able to apply himself consistently and may also have a completely different personality!

wonderingmum wrote:
she thought DD would get in on appeal as 'the school know her older DD'

Hogwash! No appeal panel is going to make a decision about a child's aptitude for a GS based on the older sibling's performance! Panel members should be impartial, and there are provisions within the DCSF Appeals Code to try to ensure that.

I have every sympathy with Bouga because I believe that a generation of one family, or perhaps an entire family over generations, may not have "the knack" of passing the type of papers set for the 11+ in a given area. As Bouga has two older children who have clearly performed very well despite "failing" the 11+, it suggests that there may be some science behind the theory.

Sadly for Bouga, I don't think it will carry much weight, if any, at an Appeal. (It may find a home as one of Etienne's "just a mention" moments when you get there Bouga, but that is probably about it I'm afraid. :( )

It would carry even less weight for the DD of the lady you mention, wonderingmum. :)

Sally-Anne


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