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PostPosted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 7:43 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 11, 2013 7:29 pm
Posts: 2
Hello,

I am new to this site & looking for some advice.
My husbands new job means we are looking to move to Stratford Upon Avon as soon as possible and we will be applying for a secondary school this year for the 2014 entry.
We don't have the 11+ where we currently live and I'm struggling to understand the system. What I would like to know is how hard it is to get into the grammar school? For the sake of argument, say my daughter achieves the required pass mark, will she automatically get a place? Or do most children pass and they take the nearest children geographically?
Out of interest, is the Stratford High school the only other secondary school or can you apply to near by schools? I believe she can apply to Alcester grammar too?
I'd appreciate any advice, including where to move to! :)

Thanks in advance


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 9:53 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 22, 2011 8:20 pm
Posts: 1706
Location: Warwickshire
Start by downloading the 11+ registration form for entry to secondary school in September 2014. The closing date for on-time registration is Wednesday 10 July 2013 at 5pm, with the exam on 7th September.

You might also want to have a look at this page.

You can apply to any secondary school you like (except the single gender schools of the opposite gender!) - so you aren't restricted to just the schools in Stratford itself, although that will be where most Stratford based children go.

There is no "pass mark" - the schools here simply make offers to the highest ranked pupils who have put the school at the top of their preference form. You can apply to both Stratford and Alcester and if you don't get a place at one, be considered for the other. This year offers for Stratford Girls Grammar were made down to the 246th ranked out of 882 girls in South Warwickshire, and for Alcester down to the 300th ranked (a bit lower after waiting list movement). However the test is opt-in so most pupils don't actually take it and the standard is high - assume that you'd need to be at least in the top 10% in a primary class, probably more.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2013 12:13 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 03, 2009 7:23 pm
Posts: 352
Okanagan's advice is spot on, just to add in that if you live south of the river in Stratford, then Kineton High is not too far either and some children from my area (Tiddington) have opted for there rather than Stratford High.

There is also a catholic secondary in Alcester (St Benedict's) which some children attend if they have a religious background.

If you lived in the villages between Alcester and Stratford you could also consider Alcester High. Personally my favourite non selective is Stratford High but worth looking at them all.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2013 2:50 pm 
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Joined: Fri Sep 05, 2008 4:33 pm
Posts: 866
I think Stratford High is rather huge and impersonal. The children seem to be a bit of a rabble and many of them are to be seen smoking after school. The building is modern in a nasty way - interesting that the architect himself lives in a lovely cotswold stone barn conversion near us!


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2013 4:34 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 03, 2009 7:23 pm
Posts: 352
Interesting - do you have a child there Magwich? I do and I do not find it impersonal at all. The school is effectively split into three houses and each one operates independently so the children all become part of a smaller community. Being a new build, it is well equipped for modern technology, something I know many schools have struggled with. The school differentiates well as they have different "pathways" - green pathway for example is the top group, children identified as more able and they do an extra lesson twice a week until 4.10 to stretch them.

My teen is 15 and I have never seen any of her friend smoke yet, although I am sure some do as they do in any school (I went to independent school and many girls smoked, my friend's daughter is at Shottery and started smoking at 11!).

I really really like the school.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 21, 2013 7:32 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 11, 2013 7:29 pm
Posts: 2
Hello,

Thank you for all the replies. I have got the 11+ form downloaded now thanks.
Please excuse me for being really stupid but I have another question. In Okanagan's reply you say offers were made to 246th ranked out of 882 girls for the Stratford girls school. But on their website it says there are 112 places. So are offers made on the assumption that not everyone will take them up? Is it a system where you get either a firm offer or a place on a waiting list?

I've asked a few people about Stratford High and it seems to have very mixed, but very definite reviews. People either tell me it's a great school or that it's terrible. I'm not sure what to think.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 24, 2013 1:14 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 07, 2007 12:33 pm
Posts: 23
You will get different opinions but yours is the only one that counts. There are no terrible schools in this area, but there are many outstanding and good schools. We are very lucky. You should go to as many open evenings/days as you possibly can. Most schools will allow you to look around by appointment if you can't manage the open days.

Stratford School is, in my opinion and experience, a great school which has a nurturing approach and fantastic facilities. Alcester Academy, interestingly has a very small intake this year with expected class sizes of around 20. It has a great reputation for music.

I know a lot of very happy young people who attend both of those schools. Granted all of the schools in the area have their strengths and weaknesses, but none of them would encourage their pupils to smoke!


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