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 Post subject: Unsuccessful review 119
PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:52 pm 
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Hi,

I really hope you will be able to advise us regarding our situation. Sorry for the long post.
We have been unsuccessful at the review and are wondering what evidence we need to collect for an appeal. We were under the impression that the evidence we were providing was strong and had a good chance of getting through. Our HT was certainly very hopeful and told us we had a strong case.

Score: 119
HT recommendation:2:2

Sats predictions Yr 6:
Maths:111-120, Reading: 111-120, Writing: GDS
Yr 5 results:
Reading, writing, Maths: GDS
Yr 2 Sats:
Reading:3, Maths: 3, Writing: 2b

Extenuating circumstances were that ds fell very ill and was hospitalised a couple times with breathing difficulties (bronchspasm) in the final term. This took a long time to recover and there was a significant impact on his learning along with an extension of the house which lasted almost 6 months during his time in yr 5.

The reasons provided by the SRP state that although they were convinced that the yr 6 predictions were in line with the progress, the academic evidence does not account for the shortfall in marks and neither do the extenuating circumstances as they did not impact his high achievement in yr 5.

My questions.
1) we were told that the extenuating circumstances with this score will not matter too much? As the yr 5 performance is not quantifiable how would they have measured the impact? Is it worth mentioning in the appeal that his performance could have been even higher in yr 5 had he not been ill.

2) The school had no more academic evidence as they do not do any CATs etc. I was told bucks is not encouraged to do them. His academic evidence was the highest achievable and everything the school had for ds. What evidence would the SRP have liked to see?

I would be grateful if you can advise what kind of evidence we should be discussing with the HT to present in an appeal.

Hope this makes sense.
Regards


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:12 pm 
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Joined: Mon Mar 15, 2010 2:45 pm
Posts: 6508
Welcome to Appeals! :)

Lots of reading to do.
Start here.


Once you've finished reading, if you still have unanswered questions, do please let us know.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:29 pm 
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Hello scary mum,
Thank you for your response. I have read most of the information but I was hoping that someone could shed some light on the questions I have posted? I’m sure will have lots more questions in the coming weeks!


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2019 11:39 pm 
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Posts: 8002
Welcome!

In addition to the link Scary has given, be sure to study the Bucks sticky:
viewtopic.php?f=12&t=53659
It covers almost everything, including the issue of extenuating circumstances.

Quote:
My questions.
1) we were told that the extenuating circumstances with this score will not matter too much?

That is not quite what the official guidance issued to headteachers says.

See our Bucks sticky:
      Quote:
      (v) Did Review Panels follow their own rules? For example, the headteachers' manual refers to a normal expectation of 'exceptional extenuating circumstances'.

      • Ask how 'exceptional' was defined, and how many successful reviews
      [with a score of 119] actually had exceptional extenuating circumstances. (This sounds like an extraordinarily high threshold, and it seems improbable that even a majority had exceptional circumstances!)
      • The LA's online guidance for parents clearly states "The Panel will also want to see evidence of any exceptional reasons to explain why your child may not have done as well as you, or their headteacher, had expected in the Secondary Transfer Test" - and yet parents on here have reported winning a review without any exceptional circumstances.
      • If the exceptional circumstances rule wasn't strictly applied, how could the process have been consistent?

Quote:
As the yr 5 performance is not quantifiable how would they have measured the impact?
How indeed? A question to ask at an appeal hearing.

Quote:
Is it worth mentioning in the appeal that his performance could have been even higher in yr 5 had he not been ill
Not by you, I'm afraid - but a statement to this effect from the headteacher could help.

Quote:
His academic evidence was the highest achievable and everything the school had for ds. What evidence would the SRP have liked to see?
Another good question for the appeal hearing! What were their criteria to ensure that the process was fair, consistent and objective?

Quote:
I would be grateful if you can advise what kind of evidence we should be discussing with the HT to present in an appeal.
If you follow the link provided by Scary, point 1 takes you to the Q&As.
Look at the Q&As B11 and B48.

The summary of your review case looks quite good to me, although we don't know how reliable the headteacher's recommendations were.

On the face of it, with predictions of 111-120 and GDS (which are accepted), and a score of 119, one wonders how they reached their conclusion that "the academic evidence does not account for the shortfall in marks". Why not? (For appeal purposes it will be important to focus on the process, e.g. what criteria were used, rather than to criticise the panel's judgement.)

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Etienne


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:53 am 
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Joined: Mon Feb 11, 2019 11:59 am
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Quote:
The summary of your review case looks quite good to me, although we don't know how reliable the headteacher's recommendations were.


Dear Etienne,
Thank you for your response. Very useful points. As for the HT recommendations, I was told that most students predicted a 2:2 passed. Ds’s school is a a high performing school and over 30% out of 60 students have passed. The only thing I can think of is that the headteacher only took over under 2 years ago. Not sure if this has any impact on the reliability of the recommendations.

If the recommendation wasn’t deemed reliable should this have been mentioned in the decision summary?


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2019 6:21 pm 
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Joined: Mon Dec 12, 2005 5:26 pm
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Quote:
If the recommendation wasn’t deemed reliable should this have been mentioned in the decision summary?
In theory, yes, but in practice we suspect there's a reluctance to draw attention to variations in the accuracy of primary headteacher recommendations.

However, you will get a copy of the school's recommendations with the appeal paperwork in the summer term, and can judge for yourself how accurate they were.

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Etienne


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2019 11:28 am 
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Joined: Mon Feb 11, 2019 11:59 am
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Thank you Etienne,

I will keep in touch over the next few months for more advise. Thanks


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 25, 2019 12:45 pm 
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Hi Etienne,

After having an initial discussion with our HT and reading as much info available on this website, It is almost time to have a meeting with the HT, who advised us to contact the school once we had a better idea of what evidence the school can provide to help in the appeal. There are still so many questions and confusions but I guess we have to start somewhere.

I would be grateful if you can advise what kind of support letter is likely to make an impact on the appeals panel in our case where the HT already provided maximum support in the SR.


We will be requesting letters of support from Class teacher, English, Maths and science teachers from yr 5 and 6. Are letters of support from teachers considered “academic evidence” or will they need to provide any additional evidence to support their comments?

1) what points should be mentioned by the teachers.
a) suitability to GS?
b) importance to be with like minded peers?
c) Science and Maths ability makes it important that he attends a school that can challenge and support him to achieve highest possible grades. (Can we provide comparison of results of the desired and offered school to support this)?

I have some questions specific to our case and was hoping that you would be kind enough to have a look at our SRP decision and the SR form and advise us? I can fwd it on to the appeals box.

Many thanks


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 25, 2019 8:09 pm 
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Joined: Mon Dec 12, 2005 5:26 pm
Posts: 8002
Hi
Quote:
We will be requesting letters of support from Class teacher, English, Maths and science teachers from yr 5 and 6.
There might possibly be a risk of 'overkill'. Panel members may not welcome having to read another 8 letters of support - unless, of course, they add something of value.
Normally a letter from the headteacher will incorporate all the academic evidence.

There is a tendency for a letter from the class teacher to turn into a character reference (which is not what is wanted - there needs to be an unrelenting focus on very high academic ability).

If he unexpectedly underperformed in the English or Maths section of the test, then an extra letter from the relevant subject teacher confirming that this was a complete 'blip' could help reinforce whatever the headteacher has written.

However, I would be inclined to leave open the possibility of letters from teaching staff until April. With SATs pending in the summer term, I think panels might appreciate additional evidence that is as up to date as possible.

Some panel members are reported to be interested in having sight of the Y5 report, and it would be appropriate to submit this in March - but only if it adds value (i.e. if it confirms well-above average ability). From the appeals perspective the problem is that too many school reports just have 3 broad ability levels (below/at/above the expected level).

Quote:
Are letters of support from teachers considered “academic evidence”
Yes.

Quote:
or will they need to provide any additional evidence to support their comments?
Evidence to back up their comments could be useful. For example, if predicting 111-120, it would strengthen the case if they can say "In a recent SAT test, taken under exam conditions, he scored ......"

Quote:
1) what points should be mentioned by the teachers.
a) suitability to GS?
Yes.

Quote:
b) importance to be with like minded peers?
No (unlikely to be an argument the panel will give weight to).

Quote:
c) Science and Maths ability makes it important that he attends a school that can challenge and support him to achieve highest possible grades.
Not without some further justification (e.g. he wants to study medicine, therefore .......).

Quote:
(Can we provide comparison of results of the desired and offered school to support this)?
Negative points about the offered school tend not to go down well.

Quote:
I have some questions specific to our case and was hoping that you would be kind enough to have a look at our SRP decision and the SR form and advise us? I can fwd it on to the appeals box.
Although we don't normally have time to look at individual paperwork, it would be useful to see if the forms have changed this year (there are usually one or two tweaks). We can also try and spot if anything on your headteacher's review form could have been done differently.
Would you like to send:
      the headteacher's review form
      the SRP decision with the clerk's notes
      the Y5 report (but only if you think this might be helpful).

_________________
Etienne


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2019 1:38 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 11, 2019 11:59 am
Posts: 19
Dear Etienne,

Forms send to the appeals box. I look forward to your response. Thanks


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