A breakdown of out of county passes shows that the increase of 183 is almost wholly due to more children from the London Borough passing. These will be mainly looking for places at the four Dartford grammars, who give main priority to local children. It is therefore unlikely that the number of out of county children taking up places in Kent grammar schools will increase. In any case, last year, the 335 out of county children who took up places in Kent grammar schools were partly balanced by the 154 Kent children going to out of county grammar schools.
Kent Grammar School Assessments for Year 6 children, for Admission in September 2014*
Attending primary schools In area
In area who sat test**
Headteacher Assessment pass
Total In area Passes
Out area who sat test
Headteacher Assessment Pass
Total Out Area Passes
Total Kent Passes*
Out of County Tested
Out of County Automatic Pass
OOC Headteacher Assessment
OOC HTA Pass
Total OOC Passes*
* Total figures slightly different from supporting data, reflecting adjustments. Figures relate to place of school attended, rather than place of residence. Allocation figures in March are based on place of residence. You will find the equivalent figures for the September 2012 tests here.
** the in area or "selective areas" are those parts of Kent which were historically served by grammar schools, before freedom of choice legislation removed their significance.
Details of Out of County applications and passes
As in previous years, there has been much hysterical debate in the media about the likely impact of the out of county children who passed the Kent eleven plus. However, as I have forecast previously, the impact is again likely to be much less than other commentators have claimed. The real picture is as follows:
|Sat Test||Found selective|| |
% passed of those
who sat Test
Please note that the out of county pass total differs slightly from that in the original figures - late applications, classification of the 8 home educated children, etc.
The increase in ooc passes since last year is almost entirely down to more children from the London Boroughs, mainly seeking entry to the four Dartford grammar schools. As the number of ooc places available here will be very similar to last year, I would be surprised if the number of out of county children taking up places in Kent grammar schools will be very different from 2013, when there were just 335 from the 1298 who passed the test.
Indeed, many if not most of these children are not seriously looking for places at Kent grammars, some take the Kent Test as practice for elsewhere, others see a Kent grammar school as back up. Others, perhaps chasing West Kent grammar schools for their perceived status and planning to move if offered a place, draw back when they discover the high house prices in the area. Sadly, these are the families who make an utterly disproportionate noise on another website, creating a wholly unrealistic impression of the true situation.
The out of county passes include children from Thurrock (38); Bedfordshire; Buckinghamshire; West Midlands; Liverpool; Manchester; Tyneside; Wales; Somerset; Lincolnshire; and Cumbria; of whom a few may be planning to move to Kent, but most will surely be speculative.
As I have consistently forecast, the real pressure continues to building in North West Kent, with the overwhelming number of out of County passes coming from London Boroughs. Bexley and Bromley alone have 357 boys having passed, with other London Boroughs providing a further 241. These boys are targeting two schools: Wilmington Grammar on the Bexley boundary which offers ten per cent of its places to high scorers (414 or more cut off last year), the remainder on distance grounds; last year 68 of its 120 places going to out of county applicants. Dartford Grammar is the main attraction for high scorers, place of residence irrelevant, but on three main railway routes through SE London all the way from London Bridge. Last year, these actually saw a fall on ooc places, back to 32%, although with an initial cut off score of 418, and I believe this year even higher, with a considerable proportion of those top scorers with 423, targeting the school. Last year, another 13 London boys headed for Judd. For girls, 524 London girls passed the Kent Test, mainly targeting Dartford Grammar School for Girls and Wilmington Grammar School for Girls. However, last year just 12 out of county girls were offered places at Dartford, mainly sisters with a priority place. On the other hand, Wilmington offered 92 of its 120 places to out of county applicants, virtually all to Londoners, from Bexley to Southwark. 9 Bromley girls headed for Tonbridge Grammar School.
Not surprisingly, the large majority of other out of county Kent Test passes went to Medway residents, although just 6 took up Kent places in September.
Head Teacher Assessment (HTA)
As noted above, when schools receive the 11 plus results at the end of September, headteachers have the right to apply for a HTA for any child who has failed. You will find details of the process here.
These results are similar to previous years, with around 50% of all assessments successful. The Kent Test saw nearly 250 more boys than girls gaining automatic passes (probably because of the higher scores in mathematics). As a result headteachers sought HTAs for more girls than boys -nearly 250 the other way balancing out the difference giving almost identical proportions of in area boys and girls passing overall! Very different from Medway where the bias in test results and the Review process both strongly favour girls.
As usual, the proportion of referrals and the percentage of passes is highest in the East and lowest in the West of Kent. This reflects the differing pressure of places on grammar schools, with the East Kent panel and primary headteachers apparently adjusting to the likely greater number of spare places available.