The information on this page was contributed by our Forum Moderator KenR, to whom we are most grateful.

Through various posts on our 11+ Forum over the last few years we have been able to document the respective pass marks for the various KE Foundation Grammar schools. This information is provided to assist parents in deciding on their school preferences.

Qualifying Scores

Bishop Vesey’s Grammar School20420432192
King Edward VI Aston School20520530120
King Edward VI Camp Hill School for Boys21521524120
King Edward VI Camp Hill School for Girls20920930150
King Edward VI Five Ways School20020036180
King Edward VI Handsworth School for Girls20520932160

Shown below are the pass scores for each KE Grammar School relating to entry into the respective schools from September 2005 through to September 2011 (viz. exams taken in November 2004 to November 2010).
The rounded average age standardised scores per paper or section are shown in the second row.

KE CAMP HILL BOYS347341343346351353232234240235243239
KE FIVE WAYS330329328330333336223225227224232233
KE CAMP HILL GIRLS323329321325330328222225229226231235
KE ASTON324327324328328331217216220214224221
KE HANDSWORTH GIRLS317319318317319321211215216215219223
BISHOP VESEY’S GRAMMAR215212217217219220

A few points to note

  • The scores above are the pass marks for the last successful candidate gaining entry. Not all candidates achieving that score would be offered a place due to distance factors, so one further mark would be required for guaranteed entry in that year.
  • The 11+ exams for Bishops Vesey (Boys) and Sutton Coldfield Grammar (Girls) were included in the KE Foundation exams for the first time for the November 2010 exam via an examination consortium. In the same year the KE & Birmingham consortium exams were age standardised across 2 papers rather than than the three Maths, Verbal Reasoning and Non Verbal Reasoning sections. As a result the age standardised pass scores are lower than in previous years. To work out the average age standardised score per section or paper, divide the 2005 to 2010 entry results by 3 and the 2011 entry results by 2.
  • The trend is broadly similar year on year with Camp Hill Boys being the highest pass mark and Handsworth Girls the lowest (relatively, but still tough to get into). Sutton Grammar was the lowest for 2011.
  • It is slightly easier for girls to get places in KE Grammars due to the fact there are more places. The “lowest” boys pass over the last 4 years was 324 (Aston) whereas the lowest girl pass was 317 (Handsworth).
  • It is important to use your preferences wisely, in particular if you really want to maximise the chance of a KE Grammar education for your child, irrespective of the journey time, them make sure that you include KE Aston (Boys) and KE Handsworth (Girls) as respective choices in your preferences for your son or daughter somewhere on the LEA preference list.
  • Parents in neighbouring LEAs to Birmingham with limited preference choices (e.g. Worcs and Dudley) should think very carefully about their choices. We have seen examples of children who have narrowly failed to get a place at say Five Ways or Camp Hill Boys who were not able to get a place at Aston or Handsworth, even though they passed, because that particular school was not included as a preference.
  • Most importantly don’t put a local comprehensive as a higher preference if you really want your child to have a KE Grammar education. There is no penalty for putting KE Grammars (or LEA Grammars) as your 1st or 2nd choice. Every year there are parents whose child passes the KE Grammar exam but is then not offered a place because they put another school as a higher preference.

Further information on how the total candidate score is calculated

  • There are 2 papers. All of the questions in both tests are consolidated into either an English, Verbal Reasoning or Non Verbal Reasoning or Numerical classification and marked. The raw scores are then converted into 3 standardised scores for each respective category and then Age Standardised. See article on Age Standardisation.
  • The actual number of questions may vary year by year, but in 2005 for example there were 100 English and Verbal Reasoning questions, 82 Numerical questions and 70 Non Verbal Reasoning questions.
  • The 3 Age Standardised Scores are then added together to give a total composite score. You can see, for example, that the minimum composite pass score was 347 for Camp Hill Boys in 2005 – this was the lowest total score for the last child to enter the school in September 2005. This is equivalent to an average Age Standardised score of 116 for each of the categories. (3 × 116=348). Obviously 347 (or 348) is the key and you can achieve this via a variety of ways e.g. 107+ 112+ 129
  • An Age Standardised score of 116 is equivalent to about 86th candidate percentile for each particular paper, i.e. 14% of candidates taking that paper achieve a score of 116 or higher.
  • For typical 11+ exams, the maximum standardised score is usually 140, however for the KE exam set by the University of Durham we understand this can be higher. The minimum is 70 and the average (50th percentile) is 100.