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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 1:31 pm 
This question is addresssed to parents who already have children in Grammars particulary Latymer/QE . Are these schools really that tough, demanding, with copious amount of homework, rat racing for better marks, as you hear (often from people who do not get kids there).
If so, why are we so determined to get our children into this cold and unfriendly environment ?
Any comments are very welcome.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 2:26 pm 
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Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2006 8:51 am
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Hi

Not the schools you mention but selective grammar school in Yorkshire. No they are not loaded with work - certainly not stressed by it
The school keeps close tabs on effort and attainment - geting concerned with those they conside to be not trying.
Effort is rewarded more than high marks I think.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 2:47 pm 
Hi

I have two kids at grammar, but not the ones you mention. They don't get huge amounts of homework, but I know a friend's daughter gets huge amounts from a very high performing local comprehensive and her daughter gets stressed about it.

There are peaks and troughs really - at the moment they don't seem to be getting much homework at all - which I am glad about.

They haven't found it enormously competitive either - I think a lot of the competition comes from parents, not children. When my two got into the grammar schools, it wasn't their friends that made snide comments, but the parents of their friends!

I must agree with the last poster, the schools really keep tabs on the children and have realistic targets for them, based on their abilities. I have been very pleased with their school.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 3:03 pm 
Hi,
Don't know about the schools you have mentioned but my son started grammar in Sept and he has not been overloaded with homework. We keep waiting for it to happen! Thought maybe after half term but not really. I was told there was lots of homework from a parent whos son already goes there. Mind you, my son was told by a friend in year 10 at the same school 'best years of your life, believe me' when referring to the early years. I think it builds up as you progress through the school.
He seems to be given a score for lots of the work he does which is good as I can see how he is getting on and I guess it is this that creates the competitive spirit amongst the children. This didn't happen at primary.
I've been very pleased with the school. He does after school rugby & football and is keeping up karate twice a week so I'm really pleased for him. I'm sure something will have to give though as he reaches the later years (hopefully not though)


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 3:49 pm 
moose wrote:
This question is addresssed to parents who already have children in Grammars particulary Latymer/QE . Are these schools really that tough, demanding, with copious amount of homework, rat racing for better marks, as you hear (often from people who do not get kids there).
If so, why are we so determined to get our children into this cold and unfriendly environment ?
Any comments are very welcome.



My daughter started in Sept at a very good grammar in Essex. I had been told horror stories about how much homework she would get, how stressed she would feel, how much pressure she would be put under etc etc....absolute rubbish! She is like a different child (bored at primary by the end). She is thriving, her capacity for learning is great, mainly because she is so enthusiastic about her new school and the homework is very manageable (in fact I am beginning to wonder how, for such a good school, they get away with giving so little homework). She has just had her first progress report and it was great - she is doing better than they expect. I am thrilled with her school and I really wouldn't put too much store by what other people say (they are usually people who do NOT have a child at the school).


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 4:28 pm 
Was talking last night to friend who has children at underperforming Comp. They get 1 hour detentions for 1 missed piece of homework (not always applied equally fairly, I might add). At my daughter's grammar, need total of 9 missed pieces before get detention.

The Grammars tend to start right in with homework at beginning of term, whereas comps can be slower setting hwk when coming back after a holiday. However, homework slackens off towards end of term. First half of autumn term in year 7 was biggest shock.

A lot of homework is research which can be done on internet or at library. Hopefully an enjoyable element!!


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 4:44 pm 
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Joined: Sun Oct 29, 2006 10:05 am
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Location: LONDON
Quote from Moose
'This question is addresssed to parents who already have children in Grammars particulary Latymer/QE . Are these schools really that tough, demanding, with copious amount of homework, rat racing for better marks, as you hear (often from people who do not get kids there). '

I spoke to year 8 children at QEB open evening who gave me the impression that their homework averaged out at 2 hours at night ("less if you are very bright, more if you a not so bright" - their words not mine) and thats after doing whatever, after school activities the boys are expected to be doing. Having said that they didn't seem especially bothered by the amount of homework.

However, I would also like to hear from parents at the cutting edge to see if they agree.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 8:41 pm 
I think it varies even within the school. I know someone who had a child in Year 7 at Laytmer and the parent complained because he was getting at least 1.5 hours per night. But other people's children, also in Year 7, were getting less than this. Depends partly on the teachers they get.

My child is in an independent school that is regarded as good academically and he gets an average of 30 minutes per night (in Year 8). I really don't get this obsession some parents and schools have with homework. I'm not convinced 1.5 hours a night really makes that much difference in the end, apart from leaving kids with little time to do anything else. I think you're right to be wary of QEB. I know it has defenders on this site but it is definitely a tough regime and I think you have to be a certain type of child to thrive there.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2006 10:30 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 02, 2006 9:10 pm
Posts: 1068
Location: Lincolnshire
Our experience is similar to some of the others posted here. Our year 8 daughter's homework at the grammar has never been unmanageable. In year 7 she seemed to get less than friends at a local very high performing comprehensive who tend to make a point of piling on the academic pressure very early. The school has a system whereby the parent is supposed to alert them if the child's homework is regularly taking the child far more or less time to complete than that allotted in the homework timetable. However, inevitably there are some very pressured weeks and others with very little and, of course, the amount of time spent depends on the individual child - my daughter completes maths and languages in double quick time but struggles with her Technology write-ups and with producing her ICT module work on time because she finds this type of work difficult, and may also spend hours doing a history or English assignment because she is so absorbed and interested.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 24, 2006 1:40 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 02, 2006 3:07 pm
Posts: 1149
Location: Finchley - Barnet
I have just seen a web site called QE school The Truth which really scared the leaving lights out of me. This site was set up in 2000 by two graduates of QE who were then at the University. The letters written on the theme of student experiences make scary reading. I know that these have to be taken with a pinch of salt; these kids are going through puberty, hormones are raging, feel frustrated etc. Howevet the letters are mostly by kids that have finsihed QE so it makes you think. I will not comment any further on the content; just read it to make up your own mind.
The site was archived in 2001 and since then it has been used as a blog by current students (some emails are from just 1-2 days ago) and this time they make interesting reading about what has happend to our sons written English; they are mostly written in mobile phone format, with lots and lots of swearing in between. Obviously going to QE does necesserily lead to an inprovement in literacy at all times!


Regards,



moose wrote:
This question is addresssed to parents who already have children in Grammars particulary Latymer/QE . Are these schools really that tough, demanding, with copious amount of homework, rat racing for better marks, as you hear (often from people who do not get kids there).
If so, why are we so determined to get our children into this cold and unfriendly environment ?
Any comments are very welcome.

_________________
sj355


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