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 Post subject: Special consideration
PostPosted: Mon Sep 16, 2019 11:49 am 
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Joined: Fri Oct 14, 2016 12:09 pm
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Hi
Following a disaster of a test this week I’ve been advised that I’ll probably have to go to appeal - my child started the test fine but over the course of the morning their chronic condition kicked in and they were stopped during the second paper. They can finish the test at a later date (next week) but can’t resit any section already completed even though they would have been significantly impacted by their disability. The head came and spoke to me after and said he will provide a letter of support although not sure what it will actually say.
I understand I can apply for special consideration but when do I do this? Should I do it before the paper is marked? Or do I do it after allocation day next March? Is there anything else I should be doing at this stage?
Thanks for reading!


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 16, 2019 3:09 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jul 16, 2013 11:27 am
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I can only tell you how it works in my area. The information pack that came with the instructions about the exam gave details about this - it tells you what to do in the event that something goes wrong on the day - illness / irregularity with organisation etc. There was a "Special Circumstances" form included which was the form to complete if this applied.

Here, that form needs to be completed & sent back to the school in the week that the exam is taken - so quite strict timescales.

I would therefore have a look at the information pack, and if its not covered, ring the school and speak to their admissions officer to ask for their advice.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 16, 2019 4:30 pm 
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I think you must be in a different area to me, there was no mention of special consideration in my pack. Anyway I’ve emailed the admissions person at the school and they don’t know whether I can claim it but are going to find out. They had never had a case of claiming it after a test before but everything I’ve read suggests it is for occurrences at the time of the test so I’m keeping my fingers crossed. Thanks for the reply.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 16, 2019 5:57 pm 
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I am so sorry to hear that this has happened - just for info is it Gloucestershire?

I see from your previous posts that your DD has IDDM? Obvs a condition that can unpredictably cause problems and invigilators may not have immediately realised there was a problem, and I suspect your DD was so engrossed in trying to do well that she didn't say anything

The best thing may be to get the other half of the test done - then appeal if needed on the basis that her WHOLE performance should have been more like the bit done when firing on all cylinders. You may require some info from people who are involved in her DM - maybe a specialist nurse / paediatrician? The Head would be able to say what her work standard normally is - however we probably need some advice from someone with more knowledge of the Gloucs system


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 16, 2019 8:38 pm 
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Joined: Fri Oct 14, 2016 12:09 pm
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Hi.
Yes it’s gloucestershire and yes, type 1 diabetes but it’s my son (tried to disguise myself on other post thinking there will be limited diabetic parents but I give up now as I expect I’ll be on these boards a while, sorry for confusion).
There were a few contributing factors - his cgm (system which monitors his levels) failed which meant it didn’t alarm, he had two invigilators and a nurse but none were familiar with his cgm so didn’t know it had failed, he had a snack without insulin when he was already too high and he didn’t want to stop and say he felt poorly so it was only when he was visibly ill the test was stopped. I’m so disappointed for him, he was only diagnosed a year ago and it’s been quite an adjustment. So he is returning next week for the final section.
He said it was only the last penultimate section he felt really unwell on so at best he just did poorly on that bit but my worry was that he was impacted as soon as he went significantly out of range (break). So you’re right, I may need to appeal for the whole test, not just the last section he completed.
I know I need to first wait for the results and see how far off he is but I came across the special consideration thing today so I’m hoping he may qualify. I’d really like him to go to Strs where his brother goes who’ll (hopefully!) watch out for him.
Thanks again for the advice.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 17, 2019 6:08 am 
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Joined: Mon Oct 21, 2013 7:59 pm
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I don't know about special con for 11+ but I do know about it for GCSE/A levels - it is used for things like a child being unwell (for example they may have had a really bad upset tummy) or a death in the family. What it does is that special consideration is given to their overall mark - but it is a maximum of 5% - so effectively would just give the benefit of the doubt on a decision where a child is very very close to a boundary grade. It isn't going to make up for a major shortfall.

I suspect herman is right - ensure he is tickety boo for when he sits the next section/end of test and encourage him to do his absolute best. Start to research appeals info and gather it together, just in case - and get the best academic evidence you can to support that, had it not been for this pretty serious extenuating circumstance (which should itself be evidenced in invigilator logs etc) you would have normally expected him to do much better - you may be able to see his paper and pinpoint where he started to go off track. Of course, he may do well enough anyway (let's hope).

Good luck


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 15, 2019 6:21 pm 
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Joined: Fri Oct 14, 2016 12:09 pm
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Hi
For anyone who might come across this at a later date there is no special consideration for the 11+, the only method of recourse is appeal.
My boy qualified for STRS but I don’t think with a rank high enough to get a place - he was 308 and last year they took to 295. So it looks like I’ll have to appeal. I’m going to start gathering evidence as it arises and I have good reasons for wanting that school and the circumstances on the day but I was hoping somebody could advise me how much weight (if any) I should give to how his condition was managed on the day.
My biggest concern is that the invigilators were not familiar with his meter and cgm and as a result his blood glucose rose very rapidly and steeply resulting in him being stopped. If it was his responsibility to manage himself (eg put the carbs for his snack into his meter to make sure he received appropriate insulin) then I’ll just have to suck it up. But he definitely didn’t have insulin for his snack (meter shows this) and given he had the snack when he was already high, having it without insulin probably was the final straw for his body. And given he is so close to last year’s cut off, this will probably make the difference between getting a space next March and not. Should I mention this at all during the appeal or is it just our bad luck? Does this count as maladministration?
With hindsight I so wish I’d checked the invigilator and nurse knew more about his technology. I’m not even sure the invigilators notes (which I’ve requested) will show this as I don’t think the invigilators even knew he had eaten without insulin. They probably thought the dose he took at break was for food when it was actually only a correction dose as he was already too high.
Sorry for long post, I’m so pleased he qualified as I hope it’ll make the appeal easier.
TIA


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 15, 2019 11:24 pm 
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Joined: Thu Aug 16, 2007 8:40 pm
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Hi, Turtle,
I am sorry to hear about all the difficulties your son went through.
How does he manage at school? Is he responsible for monitoring his CGM or the school nurse does? Have you informed the exam’s organizers about his CGM in advance?
Anyone who could monitor CGM during the exam required special training even the nurse, because all pieces of equipment are different and even nurses would not know them all.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2019 6:28 am 
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Everything at school is done with a TA and noted down including his lunchtime carbs and insulin dose. He is more than capable of doing it himself though, I just don’t know what happened on the day to mean his carbs weren’t entered on to the meter. My best guess is that his high blood sugar was already impacting his concentration by then but who knows? I feel so naive now, just handing him over that morning. He had a letter from his nurse saying he wears the cgm and it needs to alarm but that was it - no detailed instructions at all for that or his meter. And I’m not sure it’s reasonable to expect invigilators and nurse to have that detailed knowledge. But maybe it is? I guess that’s what I’m trying to get clarity on. Thanks for replying.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2019 8:36 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 16, 2013 11:27 am
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Hi just wanted to say well done to your son, followed your post. I'm not in your area but is there likely to be movement on the list? He's not too far off. I don't have experience with appeals either but I would say you've got strong grounds to appeal and if your DS was so close. Good luck


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