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PostPosted: Thu May 01, 2014 6:32 pm 
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Following LSS and the B'ham grammars - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-27244683
Wonder if any of the southern grammars are considering changes??

JD


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PostPosted: Thu May 01, 2014 10:30 pm 
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I think it should be mandatory, I think independent schools should be made to accept a proportion of non paying pupils too with the same criteria (ie not picking the pupils with top marks in the exam and offering them bursaries which are effectively scholarships and chosen on high academic ability).

Grammar schools are becoming increasingly middle class as so many end up tutoring which of course is not possible if you are on a lower income. I don't think it should be done on free school meals though, I think anyone earning below average wage should be considered on these grounds as we are the ones who cannot afford to tutor.


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PostPosted: Tue May 06, 2014 8:36 am 
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Complaints have been lodged against the RHS and LSS policy with the School's Adjudicator.

Lower scores to pupil premium children is not a fair admissions policy. It is not a child's fault he or she is not on a pupil premium and has to score higher in a test that is supposed to be tutor proof. If tutor proof, then income is irrelevant, why is a "poorer" child at any disadvantage, unless the tutor proof claim is a con? Low income children have the same access to libraries as everyone else.

I hope the two tier scoring system that works against hard working parents is deemed unlawful and this is not allowed. They should simply encourage applications from poorer families. What is next? Lower grades for Universities from poorer children. Priority in jobs if poorer. Where does it stop?

I wonder if there will be more reserved places for this children for who English is not their first language as they are discriminated against in the test, especially because VR is now 50%.


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PostPosted: Tue May 06, 2014 9:01 am 
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For anyone not in the know this is pupil premium:

https://www.gov.uk/government/policies/ ... il-premium

Free school meals, is only a small component.

Some of these children don't even know if they will be in the same home after school, let alone make it to the library. They need all the help they can get.

The fsm only quota is just a means of dividing those children in a less advantageous position at home when it cones to financial support and parents that can focus entirely on their child's education and welfare without worrying about securing work and surviving on very low income. It is not a perfect means of assessment for those that should qualify for pupil premium, but it is a good start at helping bright kids fulfill their academic potential regardless of their social background.

Once a grammar school place been appointed the children are older and more independent of their family circumstances. Homework clubs are made available after school and in some schools breakfast clubs, ensuring they are nutritionally equipped for the day ahead. The secondary school will also allow children access to it equipment which they may not have at home.


Last edited by southbucks3 on Tue May 06, 2014 9:09 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue May 06, 2014 9:08 am 
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... and it is valid for 6 years.

So, when changing jobs, have a 3 month gap. Go on holidays, spend your money or give your money away to family. Claim pupil premium. Start your new job, and then lose the pupil premium, but your status is valid for 6 years. Better still work as a contractor through a limited company and pay yourself £6.50 an hour to qualify.

Remember, no tuition is required for the 11+. That's what we are told. Two children at the same school get the same education. One scores 220 and one scores 210. So 210 gets a place. This is good old British justice.

Let the primary school use the £1300 pupil premium for 11+ preparation. Job done.


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PostPosted: Tue May 06, 2014 10:09 am 
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I suspect the primary school have other things they need to spend the pupil premium on, like basic maths and English, for starters and, also it goes against CEM to then spend that money on 11+ preparation. I think you are losing sight of the actuality of fsm entry to GS. The fsm children still have to achieve the qualifying score - but if they achieve the qualifying score, they will automatically get entry, regardless of their rank. I don't have an issue with that - the qualifying score is very carefully worked out to be near the PAN anyway so, in reality, not many children will be displaced. To me it is only the equivalent of someone who almost qualifies putting together a very good case for entry on appeal - they leapfrog over everyone else too - but in this case, they didn't actually qualify. Incidentally, NVR is there to counter the non English speaking bias and there has been lots of discussion about why VR is essential.

This is only a small step to try and offer equality of opportunity but I can only see it as a positive. I know it's a grandiose statement that no child should be unfairly disadvantaged because of the situation of their parents, but I would like to think that if I my children were in that poverty, someone would offer to support them, not just kick the step out from under them.


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PostPosted: Tue May 06, 2014 11:18 am 
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Sorry gideon but you just come across as the good old affluent middle class trying to hang on to your advantages in life so you can pass them on through the generations. Of course thousands of pounds worth of tutoring helps prepare a child as does growing up in an affluent family where money for books, trips etc is no problem. A child from a disadvantaged background with 210 deserves the place more than one from the above background who scores 220. 10 standardised points is a very small number in terms of raw scores. The key is having a "pass" mark and then introducing allocations criteria. Just letting poor children in on any score would of course be a nonsense. Your description of the lengths people might go to to get on FSM says all I need to hear about the morality of this particulat group of parents.


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PostPosted: Tue May 06, 2014 7:24 pm 
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What they are doing is promoting benefit Britain. Let's have a different lower mark for ethnic minorities as well.

We have been sold the idea the 11+ is tutor proof. Are Durham telling lies to sell their services?

John's parents can claim free school meals for their son. Peter's work hard to better themselves and earn slightly more - no free school meals. Both children went to the same primary school and infant school, receiving an identical education. John scores 10 marks less than Peter. Why does John deserve the place? He lost in the competition. He failed. He wasn't good enough. Same education, from the same teacher. Neither prepared for this 11+ that is tutor proof and tests innate ability (or are we sold a lie). John just wasn't good enough. No natural ability. 10 marks is a lot. Peter did not get a place as his parents worked too hard. Message.... don't work, it does not pay. It wasn't Peter's fault he was not so deprived. Surely, this must be deemed unlawful.

What is next? Let Oxford and Cambridge reserve places for pupil premium children as well. Let's reserve jobs for pupil premium children as well.

Rabbie, you come across as one one who promotes benefit Britain, and someone jealous of hard working people, and want something for nothing and what you are not entitled to. One does not need to buy books. There is this "thing" called a library. I'll let you in to a secret.... books are free to borrow.

Let's have a 100m race. The pupil premium came second. But let's give him the gold medal as he could not afford the training to win.

10 marks less than another is a FAIL. He did not pass and does not deserve a place as someone else beat him.

The best they should do is use pupil premium as a tie breaker.

I wait to see what the School adjudicator says about this policy. It is a smack in the teeth for hard working parents.


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PostPosted: Tue May 06, 2014 7:41 pm 
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I don't think it is a kick in the teeth to anybody. It is about recognising that their are groups of people in life who need a bit more help than others and as a society we have a duty to offer that additional support.

I know the 11+ is supposed to be tutor proof but let's face it, it really isn't. If you have more money you can give your children more opportunities. Simple. You can afford to live near the better schools, immerse them in situations that offer educational benefits, take them abroad to experience different cultures. You are more likely to have more resources, books around for them to pick up, travel guides from previous trips, have a newspaper delivered that the child noses through.

As previously stated, that 10 points is not really much in the grand scheme of things. I would much rather some pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds got the places than children from families whose back up plan is a private school education.

Plus all the pupils in the school would benefit from a broader mix of pupils within the school.


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PostPosted: Tue May 06, 2014 8:00 pm 
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So, let's scrap catchment areas and make the 11+ a real competition. The highest marks gets a place, like Birmingham. They plan to give make pupil premium a tie breaker only.

This pupil premium nonsense just works against the middle class. The affluent can afford private school.

Tell the child who loses a place to a pupil premium child and scored higher that he has not been kicked in the teeth.

10 points is a lot. It is huge. It may well mean leap frogging 50 children.


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