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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2018 6:58 pm 
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That's most helpful. Thanks.

With regard to FCO, yes, the wording/structure has changed.

It reminds me of a separate letter see here which was sent out to appellants in 2013 (the first year of the new review system) demanding advance notice of the parental case. "You must ....."!

(This letter was dropped in subsequent years, possibly because parents wrote back along the lines we suggested at the time.)

I think the current change is unwise - and probably unfair - for two reasons:

      1. It appears to make parents responsible for disproving FCO, when that is not what para. 3.13b of the Appeals Code says. The clear implication of para. 3.13b is that it is for the admission authority to prove that the review was FCO.

      2. The admission authority has not put forward a case stating why the review was FCO, so why should parents be compelled to refute a case that hasn't yet been made?

In my view points (1) and (2) above should in fact be included as part of your case to the appeal panel. Try and persuade them that there's a more fundamental issue here than whether or not a tick box in the clerk's notes has been left unticked!

It would have been fine if parents were simply invited on the appeal form to raise any concerns about FCO, such as glaring errors in the clerk's notes, but in my opinion it should be optional.

I think I would stand by the advice given in D11 of the "How to appeal ....." Guide, where two possible options have been suggested:

Quote:
You need only write "At the hearing we shall wish to challenge whether the Selection Review process was 'fair, consistent & objective', but have not yet seen the school's written case.
We would also respectfully point out that para. 3.13b of the Appeals Code appears to put the onus on the admission authority to prove its case for 'fair, consistent & objective', not on parents to disprove it".

Quote:
However, if you have some strong points to make now, and are happy to give the other side advance warning, you could perhaps go into more detail, listing your concerns ("We don't think the review process was 'fair, consistent & objective', because .........."), and adding "There may be further points we shall wish to raise at the hearing, having heard the Admission Authority's case. However, we would respectfully point out that para. 3.13b of the Appeals Code appears to put the onus on the admission authority to prove its case for 'fair, consistent & objective', not on parents to disprove it."


With regard to (a) “Please explain why your child is suitable for a grammar school” and (b) "Please explain why you want a place at this school”, this looks to me like administrative convenience! Panel members don't get to see your case until about a week before stage one, so it doesn't make the slightest difference to them if your case is submitted 10 working days before hearings begin.

However, in the light of the new appeal form, I would suggest the following possible responses to (a) and (b).

      (a1 - the minimum) I believe that my child is suitable for a grammar school place on the basis of a range of alternative academic evidence / evidence of extenuating circumstances which I am collating. Full details to follow.

      (a2) I believe that my child is suitable for a grammar school place on the basis of the alternative academic evidence / evidence of extenuating circumstances.
      I attach:
          1. Letter from ......
          2. Y5 school report
          3. ...........

      Any additional evidence will be submitted before the deadline.



      (a3 - the full case)


      (b1 - the minimum) I would very much like a place at the school for reasons which I hope the panel may consider sufficient to outweigh the prejudice to the school.
      I am currently collating evidence, and will forward it before the deadline.


      (b2) I would very much like a place at the school for the following reasons which I hope the panel may consider sufficient to outweigh the prejudice to the school:
      ............
      ............

      Please see attached evidence:
          1. ..........

      I may wish to submit additional evidence before the deadline.




      (b3) I would very much like a place at the school for the following reasons which I hope the panel may consider sufficient to outweigh the prejudice to the school:
      ............
      ............

      I am currently collating evidence, and will forward it before the deadline.



      (b4 - the full case)


Remember - you have an absolute right to submit additional information up to 10 working days before stage one.

Thank you very much for raising this, Woobywoo. We rely on forum members to let us know what is going on.

Would anyone care to scan and send us a copy of their clerk's notes in case anything there has changed?
Personal information such as name & address could be blotted out.
Our "no reply" email address for incoming information only is:
AppealsBox[at]elevenplusexams.co.uk - replace [at] with @
It would be appreciated if you could put your forum user name as the subject.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2018 8:21 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 21, 2017 11:18 pm
Posts: 28
Thanks so much - helpful to know it is different and see the info on the old letter link. I’ve tried to send you our clerks notes via the email address as photos. If it doesn’t work I will scan in tmrw and send. Would value any further advice on our clerks notes as per our thoughts below.

Currently we think our daughters ST was not FCO because:
1. Unclear what they questioned in section 6.2 - we provided evidence from yr 2. Are they suggesting we needed MORe evidence because of a recent school change? If so - Unfair. Are they saying they don’t believe our or our HT’s evidence? Unfair. Bottom line is this is impossible to interpret and it seems our academic evidence did not get a fair review because of our daughters school move. Did anyone else who moved school qualify at review - was their evidence questioned as ours? If they can’t answer this then I would say they cannot convince us that our daughters review was FCO.
2. Section 8 final column not completed on our form. Why not? Does not give us confidence in process.
3. Section D - why only extenuating circumstances noted and not HT evidence/other academic evidence.

Thanks.

Woobywoo


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2018 9:00 pm 
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Posts: 7750
Woobywoo wrote:
I’ve tried to send you our clerks notes via the email address as photos. If it doesn’t work I will scan in tmrw and send.
Thank you very much!
It's fine (and no personal details visible).

Personally I agree with you about 6.2.
Also section 8 and section D.

The comment "HT summary sheet and Y5 report" seems very unsatisfactory - the rubric in this box clearly asks for comment on the strength of the evidence. None has been provided.
On what basis are they then able to go on to say "academic evidence in line with test score"? What criteria were they using? How could the process have been objective and consistent if there were no agreed criteria?

Probably worth including these matters in your appeal now, although I would start with points (1) and (2) from my previous post. Having set out the principle that para. 3.13b of the Code indicates that it should be for the AA to prove its case, not for you to disprove it, you could then go on to say: "However, I do have some concerns about the clerk's (minimal) record. I note that ......"

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2018 9:33 pm 
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Super helpful Etienne. Very much appreciated.

Woobywoo


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2018 7:10 pm 
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Me again.

A few questions based on further reading etc:

1. For our case which is 3-pronged (FCO, unqualified and oversubscribed for GS in Bucks) do you think it is worth the head making a case for the partic school and/or academic evidence? I assume academic evidence remains the most important?
2. Transfer test result was 124 VR, 103 maths, 104 NVR. 113 overall. Can we just focus on maths/NVR given she got over qualifying mark in VR??
3. We need to explain why our daughter dipped in the 11 plus but performed well at end of year 5. Our extenuating circumstances are basically only 1 term of consistent teaching in yr 5 and knock of confidence and school move. We would argue that the intensive catch up in summer term (the good term) in year 5 meant she performed well, but break over the summer led to decline in confidence again and as the maths was not consolidated for a full year previously it dipped. Is this a reasonable argument? It is the best sense we can make of things. Secondly our daughter said she ‘froze’ at the start of the maths section (because of the above) which cost her time. She said she lcompleted the test but the last 4-5 she totally guessed due to time running out. Is this worth sharing or is it by the by.

Thanks so much - I know there are no definitive answers but it is so helpful to have a sense check from this forum!

Thanks a million

Woobywoo


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2018 8:59 pm 
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Woobywoo wrote:
1. For our case which is 3-pronged (FCO, unqualified and oversubscribed for GS in Bucks) do you think it is worth the head making a case for the partic school and/or academic evidence? I assume academic evidence remains the most important?
If the head is willing to support any part of your 3-pronged case, I think that would be a good thing.
Something from the headteacher is likely to carry more weight than something solely from the parent!

Quote:
2. Transfer test result was 124 VR, 103 maths, 104 NVR. 113 overall. Can we just focus on maths/NVR given she got over qualifying mark in VR??
Yes, so long as you explain what you're doing ("As she got over the qualifying mark in VR, we're going to focus today on .....").

Of course, if you have evidence of strength in English, or of other high VR scores, you should argue that she was expected to score even more highly in VR.

Use whatever suits your case.

Quote:
3. We need to explain why our daughter dipped in the 11 plus but performed well at end of year 5. Our extenuating circumstances are basically only 1 term of consistent teaching in yr 5 and knock of confidence and school move. We would argue that the intensive catch up in summer term (the good term) in year 5 meant she performed well, but break over the summer led to decline in confidence again and as the maths was not consolidated for a full year previously it dipped. Is this a reasonable argument? It is the best sense we can make of things. Secondly our daughter said she ‘froze’ at the start of the maths section (because of the above) which cost her time. She said she lcompleted the test but the last 4-5 she totally guessed due to time running out. Is this worth sharing or is it by the by.
It all looks a bit tortuous in writing - but I think it would sound quite natural as part of a conversation, so I suggest you wait for a suitable question. It's more likely than not that someone on the panel will ask about your extenuating circumstances.

Quote:
Thanks so much
You're welcome! :)

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 12, 2018 3:05 pm 
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Just received appeal dates today for AHS - wasn’t expecting it yet - not sure why not. Can anyone tell me if the stage one appeal is just AHS appeals of also for the boys’ school at same time?

Secondly does anyone know appeal success rate for AHS in past few years? I know it’s going to be even tougher this year given likely number of appeals but just wondered. Stupidly it seems to feel like to helps to know these sorts of things....

Thank you. Here’s a nod to anyone else going through this impossible process :shock:

Woobywoo


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 12, 2018 3:16 pm 
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I would be cautious about using the summer holiday as a reason for a dip as that applies to everyone.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 12, 2018 3:26 pm 
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Thanks Guest55 - good point. I wonder though whether it’s worse for a child who has only had 1 proper term of teaching /settling in a new school rather than 3 terms in yr 5 and a stable school environment to consolidate things? Or do you still think it’s not worth mentioning?

V much appreciate your views

Woobywoo


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 12, 2018 3:46 pm 
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Hmm - then that would imply that the levels in Year 5 were not really 'above expected' as they weren't sustained. A trciky one ...


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