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Monday, 09 October 2017 21:09

Medway Council Fails the Medway Test Yet Again

Update: From around 10 p.m. Monday, emails from Simon Harrington (Student Services Manager, Medway Council), informing parents whether child (no name) has passed the Medway Test or not, but no scores. Closing date for Review is next Monday, 19th October, so day lost in short time scale. At least he is trying!

Following the 2016 Medway Test debacle, when wrong scores were sent out to some families whose children had taken the Medway Test, there is tremendous frustration this year, as the online system is failing to work at the time of writing (9 p.m., 9th October), results supposed to be available from 4 p.m.

The Medway Council Twitter account offered a typically useless response, at 4.14 p.m, after which everyone appears to have gone home:

“We're experiencing technical difficulties with our telephone lines. Apologies for any inconvenience caused”

 

Naturally no mention of the online service not working. Who do they think they will fool!

Update, 8 p.m from Medway Council:  

We know that sometimes there is a delay through service providers but please be assured they have all been sent.

 

How unfortunate that all the service providers in the system had a delay of at least two hours!

At present the Council appears to have provided no further information, although I understand that the pass mark this year is 495, and that results have been sent in the post, hopefully to arrive tomorrow, Tuesday. You may find that your child’s headteacher is willing to divulge the score earlier tomorrow.

As with last year’s failure, I would have thought it worthwhile deploying an officer after 5 p.m. to solve the problem, but ‘Serving You’ clearly does not extend to this.

Medway Council Logo 

Those not caught up in this situation may be unable to comprehend the angst caused to families who have been waiting anxiously for outcomes that may decide their children’s future education path, but I can assure them it is very real, and unfortunately typical of Medway Council’s incompetence.

Update: On Radio Kent this morning Julia George, following an interview with me, read out a follow up email: 'I should have added that the Medway Test is seriously flawed, with year on year: Girls do significantly better than boys. Older children do better than younger ones. Not true in Kent. I have the statistics; This why there are three grammar schools for girls and two for boys (one trying to go co-ed which will exacerbate the issues); This was caused because of the single question on Extended Writing which carries 40% of the marks. The pass mark is an aggregate from the three tests, so high performance on the Extended Writing question can earn a place on its own, and conversely. The test is quite simply not fit for purpose'.  

My comment on last year’s failure underlines the complete lack of urgency by the Council and included: ‘The new Cabinet Member for Children's Services (including Education), Andrew Mackness, was informed of the problem on Saturday. Unfortunately, he was unable to get Officers to respond until Monday morning, but still describing their action as prompt, although it surely should have been possible for someone from an Authority whose slogan is 'Serving You', to establish that at a minimum the total score was correct before then. A statement to this effect on Sunday would have saved a great amount of grief, as I know from the torrent of emails I have received ‘.

For those unfamiliar with the Council’s appalling performance relating to the Medway Test over the years, a browse of this website using the search term ‘Medway’ will enlighten you.  

The Medway Test Pass Score of 495, although below last year’s 513 does not mean the standard is any lower. The standard required is the same. The difference reflects the number of Medway children taking the test and their abilities.

I run a Telephone Consultation Service to support and advise families living in Medway or Kent Local Authority areas, who are considering Review, looking at secondary school options, or thinking about chances of success at appeal, for schools in Kent or Medway Local Authorities.  

The pages of this website also contain much free information about each of these issues

You will find details of each of the possibilities via the links below, or to the right of this article. You may wish to start with the page on Can I help you?

Telephone Consultation Service

This page contains information on each grammar school’s response to unsuccessful Review decisions, and advice on going to Review. I suggest if you are thinking of contacting me, you read this first.

Admission to Medway Secondary Schools

Admission to Medway Grammar Schools

Individual Medway Secondary Schools. This contains information on each secondary school and academy. I am currently updating these pages. If the one you wish to consult is not up to date, please let me know and I will attend to it. 

These pages also contain links to pages providing comment and data relating to school admissions....

The relevant Kent pages can be reached via the links on the Right Hand side of this article, Kent Test results not being sent out until 12th October.

Last modified on Tuesday, 10 October 2017 17:51

1 comment

  • Comment Link Tuesday, 10 October 2017 16:07 posted by Paul

    At at what point do the public get to know the cut off points for Rochester Grammar? Is this something that is decided in hindsight or something parents find out before they have to complete the CAF? PETER You will not know this until March as they choose the 180 highest performers who have selected the school, and this is not known until after the process gets worked through in the new year.

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