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 Post subject: Advice an Appeal
PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2008 10:58 am 
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Hi, my son received his 11+ results Friday, and contrary to the result expected by all (including teacher, headmistress), he achieved a 112 and a 116 result. Of course he is devastated as he already has a brother at his preferred Grammar school.
Throughout his school life he has always been performing at a level that would suggest Grammar school ability, and in his last year has been acting as Head Boy for his current school.
His teacher and Headmistress have also indicated that they will strongly support an appeal.
He was also sick the day before the exam that resulted in the 112 score, and was kept off school that day (school can confirm) - and perhaps in hindsight it was not the right decision by us to send him in for the exam.
Would this have relevance to an appeal?
I am looking for any general advice to help is in this case.
thanks and best regards
Searsie


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 Post subject: Re: Advice an Appeal
PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2008 11:10 am 
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Location: Gloucestershire
searsie wrote:
He was also sick the day before the exam that resulted in the 112 score, and was kept off school that day (school can confirm) - and perhaps in hindsight it was not the right decision by us to send him in for the exam.
Would this have relevance to an appeal?


Yes. Write down now what his symptoms were, how he was affected, how long it all went on for, so you have an accurate record.

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Capers


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2008 12:50 pm 
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Location: Buckinghamshire
Hi searsie

I am sorry to hear about your disappointing results.

I am going to partially disagree with Capers on this. In the Head's manual for the 11+ process, Bucks make the following statement regarding sick children:

Quote:
As the dates of the tests are published in advance to parents it should be assumed that any child in school on the day of a test is well enough to take part. Please discourage children who are evidently not well from taking the test.

Parents often offer a child being ill on the day of a test in mitigation for their under performance and it can be avoided in many cases by parents and teachers recognising that a child is unwell and withdrawing them from the test on that occasion.

Unfortunately they do not make the same statement in the Admissions brochure provided to parents, so unless the Head was proactive in talking to you about wther your son was fit to take the test (and there are huge numbers of Heads who don't seem to even Read The Flippin' Manual) you were not to know that.

The only statement in the Admissions brochure is:
Quote:
"Children can be tested later ..., for example if they are ill on the day of the test."

Appeal panels really do not like "sick kiddy stories", and they take the view that, if a child is well enough to be in school, they are well enough to take the test. I recommend that you play it down, and make it a "brief mention": "Although he seemed to have recovered fully by the day of the test, perhaps, in hindsight, that wasn't quite the case."

Concentrate instead on finding the strongest possible academic evidence that you can.

You will find more advice in the 11+ Appeals Q&A - the link is at the top of the page.

Sally-Anne


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2008 1:39 pm 
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I agree with Sally-Anne.

Did you attend a presentation on the 11+ given by the headteacher? One of the slides states:
Children should NOT sit the test if they are unwell (even if they want to!)

If your son was unwell the day before the test, then clearly you would have thought very carefully about whether he was well enough to attend school the following day.

There were no unexpected developments during the day of the test, were there? (He didn't say to the invigilator during the test "I feel unwell"? And you didn't need to take him to the GP later in the day?)

See the Q&As B25, E22.

The best way to handle this is not to turn it into a major point. Wait until you are asked questions - if you haven't put forward any extenuating circumstances, someone is bound to ask "Can you think of any reason why he underperformed on the day?" When you're on weak ground, let them drag the information out of you! Very reluctantly, say "Well, he was off school, ill, the day before, but we thought him well enough to sit the test." Underplay it, and don't try claiming it affected the result - just hope that the panel might think that!

I'm doubtful that it will carry much weight because the panel will have in mind that you get two chances in Bucks (VR tests on two separate days), but at least they won't be thinking that you're making exaggerated claims.

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2008 2:02 pm 
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Thanks Sally-Anne / Etienne,
Point taken - we'll focus entirely on academic capability and suitability and will not focus on him being unwell on the prior day. I accept the point that there are two chances on separate dates. Unfortunately, the other date was his birthday and I am sure his mind may not have been 100% focused on the task at hand.

One other question - does the panel actually see copies of the test papers prior to the hearing or even during? is there any manual review of these during the process?

Thanks again
Searsie


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2008 2:12 pm 
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Location: Buckinghamshire
Hi searsie

The birthday is also "worth a mention" - probably more so than the illness! No child is going to be ecstatic about taking the 11+ on their birthday, after all.

The panel do not see the child's papers during the appeal process.

The papers are marked by machine, and although a manual re-mark can be requested, I don't think I have heard of any cases where the re-mark produced a different result.

Sally-Anne


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 Post subject: Appeal Advice
PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2008 6:45 pm 
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Thanks again Sally-Anne,
Another question if I may - I have read that it is possible to request a manual recount of the results for an exam. As our sons are so far away from his expected results, this is a consideration for us.
Firstly, is this possible and if so, does the school request this (he is at an Independent) or do we request it. If the latter, who is the request made to?

Thanks again for all the help.
Best regards
Searsie


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2008 7:36 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 7:10 pm
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Location: Buckinghamshire
Hi searsie

I have just this moment posted a reply to that same question here:

http://www.elevenplusexams.co.uk/forum/11plus/viewtopic.php?t=8305

Sally-Anne


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2008 10:03 am 
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Location: Gloucestershire
Sally-Anne wrote:
The papers are marked by machine, and although a manual re-mark can be requested, I don't think I have heard of any cases where the re-mark produced a different result.


My panel (different county) occasionally asked to look at the paper - often to see if the child had guessed the last section or finished.

And last year a paper was manually re-marked the day before the appeal. One question was marked incorrectly, gaining one point. The school immediately offered a place and hence the appeal was withdrawn. But that's the first time the marking was wrong.

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Capers


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2008 10:31 am 
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Quote:
The panel do not see the child's papers during the appeal process.

I think what sometimes happens in Sally-Anne's authority is that the LA representative is sent off to get the answer to a specific question (e.g. how many questions were unanswered?).

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Etienne


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