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 Post subject: Bexley appeals
PostPosted: Wed Mar 05, 2008 4:53 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2007 8:55 pm
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Location: Bexley
There is lots of very useful information about appeals on this forum but I wondered if anyone could give me any specific advice about appeals in Bexley. One of my son's best friends got 430 in the 11+ (pass mark 436). I'm wondering if I should encourage his mum to appeal or if I should leave well alone and not try and raise false hopes. The boy is very clever and hard working but I know did very little practice at home for the tests. He lives with just his mum who is Russian. Her English is good now but when I first knew her about 6 years ago I remember her saying to me that she was unable to help her son with his schoolwork, particularly reading, because her English was so poor (which it was!). Does anyone have any thoughts on if an appeal might be successful on the grounds of English not being the first language spoken at home? Do appeals only work if you can prove something upset the child around the time of the tests (eg family illness/death etc)? I'd be grateful for any advice.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 05, 2008 6:45 pm 
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My son missed Beths by 1 point and has been placed 11th on the Reserve List.
There are 45 children on the Reserve List that lost out by 1 or 2 points, so to lose out by 6 really is quite high and chances of winning an appeal are likely to be slim.
We have spoken to the Bexley admissions team today and they have suggested that we appeal as well as being kept on the waiting list so I would imagine that 44 other parents are being told the same.
I know it's hard, and I personally always told my son that anything over 3 points we wouldn't be appealing as I truly believe that there are too many people in front with less points that would be given priority.
However, having said all that I'm also a big believer in if you don't ask, you don't get.
If there were mitigating circumstances, then he might stand a chance and at least they would know they done all they could.
Good luck.
Vicky


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 05, 2008 7:11 pm 
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Location: Bexley
Vicky

Thanks for the reply. That's really helpful as Beths is the school my son is going to and the one his friend put as first choice. To know there would be so many above him on the waiting list helps to put his chances in perspective. I do wonder though if the language issues might count as mitigating circumstances and swing things in his favour. The trouble is appeals in Bexley are so rarely succesful. I don't mean to discourage you. My eldest son is in year 8 at Beths and there is a boy in his year that he was at primary school with who had a successful appeal having missed by 1 point. The boy in question apparently completely lost it in the NVR paper and just put his pencil down and cried. So I don't know if the parents were able to demonstrate high scores in the other 3 papers which might indicate that, if he'd kept his cool he would have done well in the 4th. There certainly weren't any other mitigating circumstances as far as I'm aware. But then the whole process is a mystery to me - and such a lottery. I'd be intrigued to know how they put the 45 children who missed out by 1 or 2 points into any sort of order. I wish you and your son the very best of luck and hope things work out well for him. Which school has he been given?


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 05, 2008 7:33 pm 
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We live in the Dartford Borough and although Beths was his first choice we also put down Wilmington Grammar and he at both Bexley and Dartford tests. Ironically he missed Wilmington by 1 point also, but his NVR was a score of 140 which was the highest mark you could achieve apparently, so we are appealing to both schools but in all honesty I think we stand a better chance of getting Wilmington based on his scores.
The 45 places were decided using an average line. Basically the scores are averaged at 100 and they use that as a guideline to place the Reserve List so for example my son scored 114 in his Maths but only scored 98 in English so that made the difference from someone scoring 112 in Maths and 100 in English. Anyway thanks for your encouragement. We have been offered Kemnal Tech which we loved anyway, but I have to know that we tried all we could and what will be etc. Glad your son got into Beths. If you see a mad woman camping in Reception, you know who it is!!


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 05, 2008 8:50 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2007 9:28 am
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Location: Bexley
BM2
Can't help with the language bit but if your friend doesn't appeal she will never ever know. It's always worth a go. She might just get a sympathetic panel. Anyway, isn't Beths supposed to specialise in languages????
Also find out if there was a Head Teachers Review and then also ask if the Head is willing to support an appeal. It would make the appeal easier to have the Head's backing.
Finally, if one appeal fails, appeal to another on the CAF as selectivity is the issue here and I'm sure any grammar would suit.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 05, 2008 9:19 pm 
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Location: Bexley
Tracy, you're right of course, in that if they don't try they won't know. It's just he's such a lovely boy and I think had set his heart on Beths - I was trying to get a feel for if he stood any chance at all as I wouldn't want to encourage an appeal if it was pointless. Beths is a specialist language school but not sure whether that would be relevant to any appeal?

I think I will just have to sound his mum out and offer some gentle encouragement if she seems as if she wants to go down the appeal route. Unfortunately, his mum isn't the only distraught parent on the playground this week.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 06, 2008 12:00 am 
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Joined: Tue Mar 27, 2007 10:13 pm
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I don't want to sound discouraging, but there will be an awful lot of children with scores between 435 and 430 and on a different day any number of them could possibly have gained a couple more marks and passed. As the borough already 'passes' more candidates than there are selective places, I would have thought a successful appeal against passing, without really extenuating circumstances (which are meant to be reported at the time of the test), would be unlikely.
Last year, the son of a friend missed by 7 (he got all 5's in his SATS), but the school gently disuaded her against appealing. I think they felt there was not much point.

All the best

Bexley


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 06, 2008 7:40 am 
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Location: Bexley
Bexley - I think you're probably right. I'd better just keep my nose out and hope she will appeal anyway just in case. Thanks.


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