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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 1:44 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jan 20, 2012 12:54 pm
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Re: Proposed Changes to Admissions Criteria for KEGs and CCHS

Kings Edward VI Grammar School (KEGs) (boys) and Chelmsford County High School (CCHS) (girls) are currently undergoing a process of consultation to change their admissions criteria. If this proposal is agreed and implemented it will mean that (for the 2013 11plus examination for entry into the schools in September 2014) 80% of the children will be selected from within a 12.5 mile radius from the school. Only 20% of the places will be given to children who live outside of this area (i.e. 22 places for boys and 24 places for girls). If implemented this proposal will make it much more difficult for children who live in Ilford, Romford, Loughton, Havering, Harlow, Bishop’s Stortford, Debden, Burnham on Crouch etc to be selected for the school even if the children perform significantly better in the 11plus exam to the children who live within the proposed catchment.

In addition it is proposed that for KEGs, 10% of places will be given to children who demonstrate significant musical aptitude. Therefore realistically only around 10 places will be given to children who live outside of the catchment regardless of their ‘intelligence’.

The main reasons given for the changes are:

• Children travel more than 60 mins to reach the schools and are therefore tired.
• Only the ‘most’ able children are able to cope with the greater journey times.
• The schools are unable to play an active role in the local community.

For full consultation letter and media articles, please visit http://www.kegs.org.uk or http://www.cchs.co.uk

The main reasons that we as concerned parents and members of the public are opposed to this proposal are:

• There will be a decline in quality and ability to compete with the best schools in the country. When academic achievement comparisons are made between schools that have catchments (e.g., the Southend Grammar Schools) and those that do not (e.g., the Barnet Grammar Schools), the schools without catchment criteria perform significantly better. Distance and travel time from school appears to have a negligible effect on academic achievement. For example, the Barnet Grammar Schools (ranked first and second state schools in England by the Sunday Times, Dec 2011) have over 40% of pupils living more than 12.5miles away from the schools.

• KEGS/CCHS have not presented evidence that only the most able children can cope with the longer journey times. Both schools have had at least 20% of children from outside of the proposed catchment area for many decades. The schools have not provided any evidence that these children perform worst at GCSE and A levels.

• The two schools are now academies which are funded by central government rather than through local authority funding. The emphasis should therefore be on selecting the most ‘able’ children rather than focusing on supporting the local community. Given the schools’ philosophy that they specialise in the ‘gifted and talented’ selection should be solely on the ‘gifted and talented’ and not dependent on where you live.

• Loss of status and quality in the future will have impact on competing for University Places especially Oxford, Cambridge and other top universities. For example, the Southend Grammar Schools have proportionally fewer children who win places at Oxford and Cambridge Universities compared to KEGs, CCHS and the two Barnet Grammar Schools.

• The schools have not shown evidence that the proposal is Equality Impact Assessed. It appears that when considering the current intake from outside of the 12.5 mile radius, this proposal disproportionately affects children who are from Ethnic Minorities much more than any other group.


We have until 29th February 2012 to respond to this proposal. Please use the points listed above or make other points that you feel are relevant. You must respond directly to the two schools using the following email addresses:

admissions@kegs.org.uk (KEGs)

office@cchs.essex.sch.uk (CCHS)

In addition we are compiling a collective response via completion of a standard response form
(see attached form.) The completed forms must be signed and completed and post to the two schools . We

Please note the proposal will be implemented before the end of this year if a substantial number of objections are not raised to the change in admissions criteria.

Yours sincerely,


KEGs Concerned Committee (KCC)
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

please complete with your details and post/email it to BOTH Schools--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Consultation for Proposed Changes to Admissions Criteria
King Edward VI Grammar School and Chelmsford County High School for Girls


I strongly oppose the proposed changes to the admissions criteria for 2013/14 for KEGs and CCHS for the following reasons:

• Grammar schools were introduced to bring much needed social mobility to Britain regardless of constraints of wealth, background, social class or race impeding students from acquiring an excellent education. The change proposed will not allow bright children from poorer backgrounds to have a chance of a good education. In particular the Kegs proposal to further safeguard 10 of the 20 places for children having attained level 5 in Music ,demonstrates this point further. Not many parents can privately tutor their child in the amount of music lessons required to reach level 5 by the age of 10 !
• The schools are part of the Essex consortium and should at the very least serve any child living in Essex. Children living in Romford,have no other performing schools to attend as they are already discriminated on grounds of religion, musical or sporting ability, or not being children of, or related to the existing closed network of previous students etc.

The two schools are now academies which are funded by central government rather than through local authority funding. The emphasis should therefore be on selecting the most ‘able’ children rather than focusing on supporting the local community. Given the schools’ philosophy that they specialise in the ‘gifted and talented’ selection should be solely on the ‘gifted and talented’ and not dependent on where you live.

• There will be a decline in quality and ability to compete with the best schools in the country. When academic achievement comparisons are made between schools that have catchments (e.g., the Southend Grammar Schools) and those that do not (e.g., the Barnet Grammar Schools), the schools without catchment criteria perform significantly better. Distance and travel time from school appears to have a negligible effect on academic achievement. For example, the Barnet Grammar Schools (ranked first and second state schools in England by the Sunday Times, Dec 2011) have over 40% of pupils living more than 12.5miles away from the schools.

• KEGS/CCHS have not presented evidence that only the most able children can cope with the longer journey times. Both schools have had at least 20% of children from outside of the proposed catchment area for many decades. The schools have not provided any evidence that these children perform worst at GCSE and A levels.

• Loss of status and quality in the future will have impact on competing for University Places especially Oxford, Cambridge and other top universities. For example, the Southend Grammar Schools have proportionally fewer children who win places at Oxford and Cambridge Universities compared to KEGs, CCHS and the two Barnet Grammar Schools.

• The schools have not shown evidence that the proposal is Equality Impact Assessed. It appears that when considering the intake from outside of the 12.5 mile radius, this proposal affects children who are from Ethnic Minorities much more than children who are from White Background.

• If the Chelmsford Grammars do not concede to the above points, at the very least they need to consider they have a duty to offer a free and unbiased opportunity to all the places available to children in Essex who cannot apply for the schools in Redbridge. Otherwise they will again be penalised from being given an equal opportunity in gaining a place to the only few Schools remaining accessible in our locality.

• There has also been no thought given to siblings who would not be given an equal opportunity to join these schools under the new proposals.


…………………………………… ……………………………..........………………………………

Signature Print Name

Address: ……………………………………..………………………………………………………………………….

Please tick as appropriate:
I am a parent of a child at KEGS □
I am a parent of a child at CCHS □
I am a concerned member of public □

For KEGs and CCHS parents only:

I live ………..………miles away from the school and my child reaches the school in ……....………minutes.


Last edited by WP on Sat Feb 04, 2012 8:50 pm, edited 2 times in total.
removed shouty capitals (Forum Etiquette #6)


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 1:50 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 12, 2007 1:21 pm
Posts: 11952
Local schools for local children - you could move nearer so you can properly support the school you want your child to attend.

These schools perform well because they are highly selective - but Buckinghamshire has catchments and only selects the top third for GS. Which county performs better ...?


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 6:44 pm 
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Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2007 12:42 pm
Posts: 3813
Location: Chelmsford and pleased
A move to Chelmsford could be the ideal solution.

Fortunately, Chelmsford is very well served for schools and the comprehensives perform very well. They may be less pleased about the catchment rules as more local children will attend the grammars and fewer will attend the comprehensives in the area.

DD was told in year 7 that she was with the top 2%, which leaves 98% to achieve well elsewhere - perhaps this is why Chelmsford is the happiest town in England or perhaps it is the bijou cathederal or the pleasant climate.

For me it is definitely the allotments! :mrgreen:


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 9:02 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 08, 2007 4:47 pm
Posts: 464
Location: South Bucks
I assume there is still time to SUPPORT the proposal then?

I am not a fan of Super selection at all and totally agree with the reasons given by the schools.

What do you mean by "ability to compete with the best schools in the country"? What parents should be interested in is to what extent each individual child is able to reach their full potential. If a school creams off the academic elite from a very wide area then naturally it should be ranked near the top in the country but that tells you nothing about the value added. What does it matter if the school is top of a national table unless most people are moving house to be within catchment?

And how will "Loss of status and quality in the future will have impact on competing for University Places especially Oxford, Cambridge and other top universities." Do these universities offer places based on the 'status' of the child's secondary school or on the performance and aptitude of the child itself? Of course a school with a slightly lower academic average on entry may have "proportionally fewer children who win places at Oxford and Cambridge" but surely what matter is that each child with the potential to win places does so.

12.5 miles is already is a very long way! We live 9 miles from our sons' school and that means we often find it difficult to fully participate in school life.

Well done to the schools for taking this step!


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 07, 2012 11:12 am 
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Joined: Sun Nov 26, 2006 11:32 pm
Posts: 77
Catchment changes also made for SHSB



For admissions policies and consultations you need to check the school websites. I found the following consultation
http://www.shsb.org.uk/newsroom/Finalco ... uments.pdf

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Tami


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