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 Post subject: Re: DAO exams Sep 18
PostPosted: Fri Jul 20, 2018 8:44 am 
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Joined: Wed Mar 04, 2009 2:01 pm
Posts: 8790
Location: Herts
The times of the Head's talk are published on the website so if you visit the classrooms during these times you will find them empty and so very easy to move around in.

There were lots of teachers available to talk to in the classrooms I was in and I could hear them engaging with the students and the parents.

There is always plenty of room to sit in and watch the music for a while and it is always lovely and cool in the music theatre.

I did not feel the cordoned off area was really a problem but I was in the classrooms when the talks were about to begin so it probably was a bit crowded then.

I certainly did not see any chaos and I was there the whole time but maybe the chaos was happening elsewhere!

I saw tours going through the classrooms but they did not seem particularly crowded.

I missed the Jane Austen tearoom this year but perhaps they decided it was too hot to be sitting inside. DG


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 Post subject: Re: DAO exams Sep 18
PostPosted: Fri Jul 20, 2018 8:45 am 
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Joined: Thu Oct 20, 2016 7:32 pm
Posts: 177
ale21279 wrote:
The Head's speech certainly had a lot of emphasis on "is this the right school for your child?", "unashamedly academic, not vocational", limited SEN support etc.


Same as last year then!


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 Post subject: Re: DAO exams Sep 18
PostPosted: Fri Jul 20, 2018 8:50 am 
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Joined: Thu Oct 20, 2016 7:32 pm
Posts: 177
Daogroupie wrote:
I saw tours going through the classrooms but they did not seem particularly crowded.


We had a couple of occasions where we were caught in a classroom with 2 or 3 tours at a time and it was a bit crowded but with that many people going through the school it was to be expected. We just moved out of the classroom and moved on or came back. The science classrooms were particularly busy!


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 Post subject: Re: DAO exams Sep 18
PostPosted: Fri Jul 20, 2018 9:38 am 
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Joined: Wed Mar 04, 2009 2:01 pm
Posts: 8790
Location: Herts
That is a shame that the tour guide did not divert to another classroom if they arrived and found a tour already there in the classroom.

There were plenty of classrooms open, the English department had two as did Languages and there were a load in the Science block and the Maths block. DG


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 Post subject: Re: DAO exams Sep 18
PostPosted: Fri Jul 20, 2018 11:08 am 
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Joined: Thu Sep 24, 2009 10:59 am
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ale21279 wrote:
The Head's speech certainly had a lot of emphasis on "is this the right school for your child?", "unashamedly academic, not vocational", limited SEN support etc.

Bit naughty to link those things isn't it? I mean it might feel as if SEN children are unwelcome as they might bring down the 'unashamedly academic' nature of the school. (Not grinding an axe as I know precisely nothing about this establishment).


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 Post subject: Re: DAO exams Sep 18
PostPosted: Fri Jul 20, 2018 11:18 am 
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Joined: Mon Jan 30, 2017 1:56 pm
Posts: 165
Amber wrote:
ale21279 wrote:
The Head's speech certainly had a lot of emphasis on "is this the right school for your child?", "unashamedly academic, not vocational", limited SEN support etc.

Bit naughty to link those things isn't it? I mean it might feel as if SEN children are unwelcome as they might bring down the 'unashamedly academic' nature of the school. (Not grinding an axe as I know precisely nothing about this establishment).


That's actually the impression I got Amber. Maybe she's trying to put people off applying as they are not exactly short on numbers. She said over 1000 have applied for the exam in Sep (for 65 places)

The only issue I had is that it's not a very welcoming message for local kids who have already obtained a distance place and are not especially academic?

She did also emphasize the sporting, music, choral, and maths achievements.


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 Post subject: Re: DAO exams Sep 18
PostPosted: Fri Jul 20, 2018 11:20 am 
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Posts: 16022
I find that Headteacher comment absolutely shocking - this is a partially selective school that 'claims' to serve its community. How can they be proud to offer 'limited SEN support'? I'd be straight to the Governors to query this and perhaps Ofsted might be interested too.


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 Post subject: Re: DAO exams Sep 18
PostPosted: Fri Jul 20, 2018 12:25 pm 
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Posts: 165
she was emphasizing that there are other, "excellent", schools in the area who would be able to provide better support if that's what we were looking for


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 Post subject: Re: DAO exams Sep 18
PostPosted: Fri Jul 20, 2018 12:38 pm 
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That is even worse! Shocking and appalling attitude - very bright children have SEN - children using wheelchairs or with autism or ADD or ..... When I was a GS SENCo I welcomed such children to our school - they gave far more back to the school community than an 'effort' to include them needed.

If I had heard this I would be writing to Ofsted and the Governors - it smacks of discrimination.


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 Post subject: Re: DAO exams Sep 18
PostPosted: Fri Jul 20, 2018 1:03 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 27, 2014 4:04 pm
Posts: 1528
I didn't hear the speech but it doesn't sound as though it has changed in years.
There is actually a lot of SEN support at the school and significant numbers of children with both physical needs and educational needs (wheelchair users included as well as many other conditions and I would estimate a higher than average number of children with ASD). I know a number of parents and children who use the SEN team and it seems very good.
There are a large number of parents who appeal for the school who don't meet any of the admissions criteria but who feel that the school is best for their children based on the supportive environment. I do not think the school would be able to cope with all these appeals being successful and the speeches may be an attempt to restrict the number of appeals?


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