We did both last year and we worked at speed for maths. Slightly lower level questions for maths but do them fast.
In the Kent test DD had enough time left to check her answers in the maths paper well within the time allowed. However in the Bexley test she only just managed to finish the paper.
She did well in both tests but scored a lot higher in the Kent test, despite the circumstances in which the test was held for OCC.
Having said that I think the CEM test in Bexley is a lot fairer than the previous GL Bexley test. A lot more DC from local state primaries are passing CEM than under the old system. Some GS catchment areas seem smaller now which is good for local DC.
Do you think the 2014 test was easier than their first CEM in 2013? A lot of parents complained after the 2013 test.
Similarly, do you think that local children are not being tutored? (Whether this is done at home, prep school or any other mean of paid/unpaid tutoring)
If I remember correctly, the old GL test was Maths and verbal reasoning. Do you think this favoured OOC children?
I also remember that in 2013 some schools were just getting to measure their catchment distance directly. (As the crow flies)
Are there any statistics about the smaller catchment area you mentoon?
I don't know if 2014 was easier than 2013. In 2014 there were complaints about the speed of the maths test in particular and some about SEN arrangements. I don't think a year has gone past without complaints about one thing or another tbh.
I don't think the trend in terms of tutoring has changed much, however some elements of the CEM test do not require tutoring. We only practised maths and DD did just fine. Under the old system at our primary only about 15% passed ( if it was a good year) since the change it is around 50% that is both 2013 & 2014. I heard of other schools in the area getting similar results. I don't know if the fact that some primaries who have now converted to academy status are providing some tuition. I don't think the old test favoured OCC but I do believe it favoured the Indies because most have VR etc. in the curriculum.
Townley still measures in walking distance and has gone from all applicants offered places to around 2 miles. Also C&S seems a bit smaller. A number of people who expected to get in based on previous years did not get places this year. On a positive note I think this is good for local children.
Having done both systems here in Bexley I would choose CEM over GL any time. I don’t know what GL was like for Kent children last year but for OCC it was nothing short of a disaster imo. For us CEM was better than GL. It would be nice if there was a system everyone is happy with but it is not going to happen is it?