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 Post subject: Disappointing SHF visit
PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 12:15 pm 
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My DD qualified :D and the only viable (Grammar)options open to her are AHS and SHF. We'd visited AHS about a year ago and she really had a good feeling for it. As its decision time now we visited SHF today and are revisiting AHS tomorrow.

I really didn't expect the two schools to be quite so different, completely different feel. Found the Heads speech to be quite negative in regard to the whole 11+ and Grammar system in general and we felt very rushed around and had no time or opportunity to look at students work or witness any teaching. We were told by the young people showing us around that they are not set for ability at all other than for Maths from year 8. As there was no member of staff to speak to at the end of the tour can anyone confirm if this is correct? Is this standard in Grammars?


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 12:18 pm 
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Not sure what other grammars do but I think at JHGS they are set in their ability group in Year 8 for Maths and Science. And possibly English too - left my notebook at home so not sure on that.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 12:22 pm 
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At BHS only set for Maths in Y8. Why were they negative about the whole 11+ process? Dollyx


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 12:34 pm 
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Dollydripmat wrote:
At BHS only set for Maths in Y8. Why were they negative about the whole 11+ process? Dollyx


And now I'm doubtful whether they are in sets for science too :?


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 12:43 pm 
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I don't know of ANY Bucks GS that sets in anything other than Maths - and that is usually from Year 8. There is no need to set as all the children are able.

Mr Box is a very effective Head and he knows that many '11+ non-qualifiers' have joined the school at Year 8 and Year 12 and done better than other students. That is also true at other GS - being honest that qualifying doesn't guarantee academic success is honest and realistic.

SHF is the only Bucks GS that has a recent Outstanding Ofsted - read the report - and also note many Bucks GS won't 'allow' you round on a school day at all. I'm sure that if you have a specific concern and get in touch that someone would respond - no doubt they had many visitors and would have loved to give you more time to look around.

I can't recommend the school highly enough and I have a pretty extensive knowledge of the competition.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 12:45 pm 
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Dollydripmat wrote:
At BHS only set for Maths in Y8. Why were they negative about the whole 11+ process? Dollyx


The Head seemed to be pooh-poohing the system to me calling it " getting a few puzzles right on one day" although I agree that it can only be a snapshot of each childs ability belittling it as if it were almost an unimportant game is not something I expected to hear in a Headteachers welcome speech on an open morning :o


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 12:47 pm 
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The Transfer Test is NOT an assessment of a child's ability - that's what the KS2 tests are.

It is meant to judge 'suitability fo GS' - quite a different thing.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 1:02 pm 
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Guest55 wrote:
I don't know of ANY Bucks GS that sets in anything other than Maths - and that is usually from Year 8. There is no need to set as all the children are able.

Mr Box is a very effective Head and he knows that many '11+ non-qualifiers' have joined the school at Year 8 and Year 12 and done better than other students. That is also true at other GS - being honest that qualifying doesn't guarantee academic success is honest and realistic.

SHF is the only Bucks GS that has a recent Outstanding Ofsted - read the report - and also note many Bucks GS won't 'allow' you round on a school day at all. I'm sure that if you have a specific concern and get in touch that someone would respond - no doubt they had many visitors and would have loved to give you more time to look around.

I can't recommend the school highly enough and I have a pretty extensive knowledge of the competition.


Thanks for your reply but although all children have qualified they cant all be the same level for each subject surely? Otherwise all children going to the school would achieve more or less the same GCSE and A level grade?

I have read the OFSTED report there is some very pleasing and interesting observations but I'm not a person who takes these reports too seriously, one of my Ds did very, very well at a school with a poor OFSTED so I believe its 'Horses for courses'

What is your opinion of AHS Guest55?


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 1:08 pm 
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Guest55 wrote:
The Transfer Test is NOT an assessment of a child's ability - that's what the KS2 tests are.

It is meant to judge 'suitability fo GS' - quite a different thing.


It all came across as very negative towards the current system, which the school is part of. That is my point.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 1:09 pm 
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As I said the Transfer Test is NOT an ability test - that's what the KS2 tests are for. There is no correlation between 11+ scores and attainment but there is with the KS2 tests.

Yes, children's ability varies but some are good at Science and others are stronger at MFL. I taught at a Bucks GS [not SHF] for a number of years and setting was never an issue in any subject other than Maths.

If you want setting you'll need to look at a comprehensive school not a Grammar.

I will PM you re AHS.


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