The end of the 11+?

Chelmsford County High School for Girls recently announced they will be replacing the 11+ (11-plus) with a new selection system. The headmistress of the school took this step because she felt the existing 11-plus discouraged girls from applying because their parents couldn’t afford the tutoring required. The new test is designed to be ‘tutor proof’, meaning everyone who applies has a fair chance.  Other schools in the south of England have made similar decisions after seeing a tutoring and coaching culture develop.

The tests that are being used to replace the 11+ are supposedly more unpredictable, and able to distinguish those who are naturally bright from those who have been intensively tutored. Our concern is that rather than creating less demand for tutoring the unpredictable nature of the test will increase the need for tutors.  These schools are not stopping selection just changing they way they do it. Selection on academic ability must always require some testing, for which there will (and always has been) tutoring.

We haven’t yet heard of the 11 plus style selection tests being scrapped or replaced in Manchester or Cheshire but we will watch closely what is happening in the rest of the UK. Manchester Grammar School do carry out an assessment day and interview as part of their selection to try and  lessen the focus on tutoring to get a place.

We do agree that parents panic when it comes to selection and the 11+. Over the last few years we have had enquiries for younger children. This seems to be because parents are told by school or other parents that the ‘best’ tutors are booked up years in advance (this usually isn’t the case) and they need to get their name down. We do agree that pressure at such a young age isn’t ideal and much of the ‘preparation’ work with younger children should be done at home in a fun way.

If you’d like to know more about 11 plus (11+) tutoring for Trafford and other Manchester grammar schools call us today. 

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One Response to “The end of the 11+?”

  1. Osuji says:

    There are certainly a lot of dliates like that to take into consideration. That is a great point to bring up. I offer the thoughts above as general inspiration but clearly there are questions like the one you bring up where the most important thing will be working in honest good faith. I don?t know if best practices have emerged around things like that, but I am sure that your job is clearly identified as a fair game. Both boys and girls feel the impact of just a moment’s pleasure, for the rest of their lives.

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