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 Post subject: why super selective???
PostPosted: Wed Oct 14, 2009 4:59 pm 
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Joined: Mon Apr 28, 2008 10:44 am
Posts: 230
I am a great fan of grammar schools, however, I completely fail to understand the purpose of Super Selective entry criteria? As far as I can see, there is little of no difference between the results of normal and super selective grammars. We have recently moved from Birmingham (super selective area) to Salisbury (normal grammar). In Birmingham, for entry to King Edwards, Queen Mary or Bishop Vesey’s you need to be in at least the 80th percentile (a friend of ours was told by the school that you really need to be in the at least the 85th percentile to be reasonably confident). In Salisbury, there is a pass mark of 75% for kids within the catchment area. However, when it comes to results the GS in Salisbury is ranked higher than any of the Birmingham Grammars, in fact Bishop Vesey in Sutton Coldfield does not rank particularly highly (below several comps) despite setting ridiculously high entry criteria. I think that the same can be said of Bucks Grammar schools, RGS in High Wycombe (which I attended 20 years ago) and Dr Challeners are 2 of the best schools in the country, even though they are not super selective.

So academically there is no benefit from the selection criteria, so let’s address another argument – why should a child be excluded from a school because they live just outside the catchment area? Approximately 40% of kids at GS in Salisbury are from out of catchment area, so it is not exclusively reserved for local children. A GS which has a simple pass mark places much less pressure on tutoring as naturally bright children will be able to achieve the required level without the need for intensive extra preparation, whilst the real differentiator between most children getting into super selective grammars is the amount of tutoring and preparation – only the very brightest will be able to pass without much additional coaching.

As a result, super selective grammars are the preserve of children from middle class families, children from less well off backgrounds have less chance of gaining a GS place. In addition the schools are no longer local as kids travel from miles away – you regularly hear about children travelling 20+ miles to school (2 school runs per day = 80 miles per day).

I am convinced that GS is the best form of education; however, the current mix of entry standards is wholly unsatisfactory.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 14, 2009 5:27 pm 
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Joined: Sat Feb 21, 2009 6:16 pm
Posts: 2113
Hi,
Am in a bit of a rush as back out to work but couldn't resist a reply.
My two eldest are at "super selectives" no catchment, no sibling priority, no pass mark just top 120 etc etc
I think once you allow selection this is what happens inevitably as schools look to cream off the top achievers as they see them.
Yes why should the child who gets a reasonable grade and passes and lives 5 mins from the school not get in?
Equally some might say why shouldn't another child whose score/ intelligence totally trumps the aforementioned child but who lives in a borough with no selective schools have to attend a possibly failing local school?
If we were the parents of either child we could make a case for both couldn't we?
The problem lies in too many people chasing too few places.My eldest DD's best friend sets off at 6 to get to school.Her local school is in special measures.Can't say i would condemn them for their choice. :?

Super selection does not make a better school just widens the pool for the school to fish from.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Oct 14, 2009 6:28 pm 
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Joined: Wed Aug 13, 2008 4:25 pm
Posts: 2610
I agree that in an area where there are few Grammars those which still exist will become superselectives. To restrict by catchment makes it unfair on those who often can't afford to or choose not to live right by these schools but that would be the only way to stop them becoming super selective.

My bug bear is when you have children being ferried past one Grammar school to another much further away. This happens in our county for two reasons.

Firstly, one is a super selective (high in the league tables) so some parents will opt out of the perfectly good Grammar school on their doorstep to put them in this particular school. (I am sure other reasons sometimes come into play but this is possibly the major reason)

Secondly because this school is now so hard to get into very bright children who live close to it are having to be bused to Grammars further afield. Often it will be because they got just one or two more questions wrong on the day than those hallowed few who get in.

So the only answer is more Grammar schools, so every one has access to one and less choice, so having past the test you can at least access the closest one to you.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Oct 14, 2009 6:42 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2007 2:32 pm
Posts: 6966
Location: East Kent
The answer is move to the SE coast, sea , sun, fresh air, fantastic seafood and loads of grammar schools!


:wink:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Oct 14, 2009 7:17 pm 
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Joined: Tue Aug 25, 2009 5:33 pm
Posts: 10
Sounds divine! Something I've been dreaming of for years. But. . . if we all moved there those grammar school places would be in great demand.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Oct 14, 2009 7:36 pm 
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Joined: Wed Nov 21, 2007 4:20 pm
Posts: 4660
........................ and England would tip up on one side and we'd all fall in, except for those of us who had been practicing beforehand and knew to hold on tight when things got tough :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Oct 14, 2009 8:37 pm 
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Joined: Wed Apr 01, 2009 3:43 pm
Posts: 523
Location: Twells
Lol :lol: :lol: :lol:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Oct 14, 2009 9:26 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2007 2:32 pm
Posts: 6966
Location: East Kent
Snowdrops wrote:
........................ and England would tip up on one side and we'd all fall in, except for those of us who had been practicing beforehand and knew to hold on tight when things got tough :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:



have you been tutored???
:wink:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Oct 14, 2009 9:49 pm 
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Joined: Wed Nov 19, 2008 3:45 pm
Posts: 314
lol :lol: :lol: :lol:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Oct 15, 2009 9:09 am 
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Joined: Mon Apr 28, 2008 10:44 am
Posts: 230
yoyo123 wrote:
The answer is move to the SE coast, sea , sun, fresh air, fantastic seafood and loads of grammar schools!


:wink:


This is a very risky strategy - The SE coast is already at significant risk due to global warming and flooding. If we all moved down there, SE England may sink a little due to the extra weight (+ the additional GS building program that would be required) and would therefore be even more at risk of flooding. As for the risk of England tipping on its side, I think that this would be highly unlikely.


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