As a postscript, and as a variation on the above, I've just read (from http://www.elevenplusexams.co.uk/school ... re-11-plus
) about entry arrangements in Boston, Lincolnshire - an area which in recent years should have been addressing the language issue I raise above.The entry standard in any year will be the lowest raw mark attained by any child in Lincolnshire who attained 220 standardised marks. Effectively, there is no age standardisation but a minimum score tied in with the consortium’s standardisation process. The reason is that the schools have been struggling with falling rolls and financial problems and are trying to keep their heads above water until the projected population rise in a few years time. They also have reintroduced a non-statutory review process which no longer exists for the rest of Lincolnshire Grammars – primary headteachers who have pupils who have performed less well than expected are invited to contact the schools.
Interesting, I don't know from when it dates. Does anyone reading this know?
It suggests that when it suits their own purposes the Boston Grammar Schools Federation is prepared to take more than the nominal top 25% of the ability range that the standardised score of 220 represents, but in a way that discriminates against younger Y6 children. They are willing to admit children whose score is below the usual 220 score when this is the result of their raw score being adjusted downwards, as is normal practice, by dint of their date of birth (because they've been as much as a year longer in education).
Isn't this effectively discriminating against younger children and removing what is the only procedure that attempts to make the test fair for all? Ageism seems to start early in Boston. Of course, because of the Sex Discrimination Act no adjustment can be made to account for the fact that Y6 boys will usually perform less well than girls, especially in VR tests, with the consequence that there will often be rather more girls than boys that pass the test.
And I have to say that I like, very much, the concept of the involvement of primary headteachers but for a whole variety of reasons, unfortunately, this opens yet another, rather large, can of worms .