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 Post subject: SAT predictions
PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2009 10:28 am 
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Hi

I am shortly due to attend an appeal for a Bucks Grammar school place for my son. On the head teachers summary sheet the SAT predictions were 5,5 and 5 for maths english and science. I have just received his assessment for the autumn term and the results are as follows;

.................Level end yr 5.......Current Level........ Target end yr 6

Numeracy ...... 4a.................... 5b.......................... .5a

Writing............ 4a.................... 5c........................... 5a

Reading.......... 5c .................... 5c ......................... 5a

Science .......... 4c.................... 4a........................... 5c

My question is, were this document to be submitted as part of a case to prove academical ability would these grades be viewed as a positive piece of evidence or viewed in a negative light given that the grade for science is currently below the 5 predicted on the head teachers assessment.

I would appreciate your comments as I am unsure whether this would help or hinder his case. My gut feeling is to leave it out and just go with the 5's given on the head teachers summary.

Thank you

Lilly


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2009 12:23 pm 
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Dear Lilly

Although Science appears to be the weakest subject, your son is still expected to achieve a level 5.

If the 5c had been in English or Maths, I think I might agree with you.

However, the most important subjects are English and Maths, and to have 5a predictions for these is too good an opportunity to miss!

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Etienne


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2009 4:43 am 
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Dear Etienne

Thank you very much for your response, it was very helpful.

If it is possible I would appreciate your opinion on a couple of other points as I am having a bit of difficulty putting together what I would regard as a credible case for my son, I have spent many hours now looking at all the posts in the appeal section and at your very informative question and answer section and have noticed that in almost every case that the children are regarded by their school and in particular their parents as being hard working and always giving their best effort. This has not always been the case for my son.

In his last school report (end of Yr5) it states that whilst getting predominantly A's and B's for achievement he got C's and D's for effort, along with comments such as ' although ***** is achieving he is capable of much, much more' as well as a few negative comments about his behaviour. On a positive note, it says he does produce work to a high standard and he is on a register for being an able all rounder and maths in particular.
His previous two end of year reports were much better getting high grades for effort and achievement.

His NFER verbal reasoning scores from school reflect this, dropping from 130 in Yr3 and Yr4 to 118 in Yr5.

During his year 5 at school there were issues at home that may or may not have affected his general attitude towards school, I don’t know.

It was only after speaking with my son as to whether he wanted to go to a grammar school, which he did, and then with his head teacher that we went ahead with an appeal. His head said he was bright and that he has worked very hard, to a high standard this year and his behaviour has not been an issue. He gave him a 1:1 recommendation in his summary. Prior to this meeting I was in two minds as whether to appeal, because if I am honest I don't believe school is the most important part of his life, though I may be wrong. On reflection it was his head teacher that convinced me that I should appeal.

My concern is that without a school report to reflect this recent improvement, I am in doubt as whether his last school report will help or hinder his chances of a successful appeal. From your comments on previous threads I get the impression that a further letter detailing an improvement in his behaviour may not carry much weight as it would be written specifically for an appeal. I think by not including this last report the panel would regard me as having something to hide.

I am also very concerned about the NFER score of 118 as he scored 120 and 118 in the actual tests. He said he finished both papers well within time.

I honestly don't know whether he is suitable for a grammar school or not.
I have been advised not to submit anything that shows my son in a negative light, i.e. not his last report, I am not sure. My instincts are just send off all his reports and let them make up their minds.

I would greatly appreciate your opinion. I am sorry it’s so long winded.

Kindest regards

Lilly.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2009 8:40 am 
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Dear Lilly

Very few schools, in fact, are willing to provide an update just before the appeal. You don't need one, anyway, if the head has given you such a good summary sheet for the appeal.

Panels tend to be much more interested in ability and potential than in attitude.

With scores of 120/118, and your son saying that he wants to go to grammar school, I have no doubt you should be appealing.

I would be quite straight with the panel, and tell them what you have written here. "My son had a blip in year 5 - issues at home may have had something to do with this."

"I didn't want to deluge you with paper, but I have his reports from years 3, 4 and 5 with me if you should wish to compare them. They do show a downturn in year 5, although even then he was getting some good results. The latest report - which you already have - is the headteacher's summary sheet, and it shows that as the autumn term went on, my son recovered from the blip and is now back on form."

"I wasn't sure whether to appeal, but the headteacher persuaded me to do so, saying that my son is very able."

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Etienne


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2009 8:57 am 
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Dear Etienne,

Thank you for your reply, its helped me a great deal. I will let you know how we get on.

Kindest regards

Lilly


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2009 6:14 pm 
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To me ( as a teacher) the Y5 comments show your son was bored by poor teaching!! He is clearly able and you do need to appeal.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 14, 2009 11:09 am 
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Dear Guest 55

Thanks for your comment and sorry for my delay in replying.

My son may have been bored by some of the teaching, I hadn't thought about that until I read your post.

I have not asked my son anything along these lines yet.

If he did say he was bored by some of the lessons, would this be a valid point that would help his case if I were to suggest it it in my presentation?

I will not ask him unless you or anyone else thinks it will be of help.

Thanks again

Lilly


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 14, 2009 6:16 pm 
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Dear Lilly

If this is so, then I think it's well worth mentioning.

"My son had a blip in year 5 - issues at home may have had something to do with this. He also admitted recently that he found some of last year's lessons boring. A teacher I know tells me that it's not unknown for bright boys to go a bit off the rails if they're not being sufficiently challenged."

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Etienne


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Feb 02, 2009 4:12 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jan 06, 2009 9:54 am
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Hello

We have had our appeal hearing and are waiting for the outcome. The postman hasn’t been yet, due to the snow no doubt. I have been over and over our hearing and have decided to post about our whole experience, partly to kill some time and more importantly that it may of some use to other parents, either as an example of what not to do or hopefully to give them another option to consider about a point they may be unsure of that was similar to one of ours. So here goes!

I won’t go too much into the specific details of our case as one thing I have picked up on having read all the Q & As and countless posts in the appeal section of this forum, is that no two cases are the same, and even when certain points of different cases may be similar, the individual circumstances are nearly always different, but I must admit that reading about the various different ways certain points were addressed certainly did help how we put our case together.

For us things started with our son narrowly failing the 11+ (120). We did think he would pass as he had done fairly well in his practice papers and in the few tests we had gone through with him at home. What we didn’t know was whether he was suitable for a grammar school or most importantly how much he really wanted to go to grammar school. We let his disappointment sink in for a few days then had a chat with him about this. We explained that it would mean knuckling down and would require a lot of effort on his part, we told him this as his most current school report was somewhat mixed, he did get good achievement marks but his marks for effort were poor. After careful consideration of his responses and reassurances that he was working hard this year, we made an appointment with his head teacher. “Is he suitable for grammar school was the only question we askedâ€


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 02, 2009 4:34 pm 
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Lilly - thanks for the time and effort you have put into this - it will be useful for other parents facing 'the ordeal'.


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