There were 14,434 children registered for the Kent Test for admission to grammar school in September 2016 (13,704 in 2015), with 13,723 actually taking the Test (12,990 in 2015).
|Kent Test Results 2015 For Admission in 2016|
|Kent Schools||Out of County|
Assessed Suitable for
Grammar Admission 2016
Assessed Suitable for
Grammar Admission 2015
Note: 'Other' includes children who are home educated.
Initial thoughts focus on the steady increase in numbers being found suitable for grammar school which once again is disproportionately towards out of county candidates.
KCC always quotes the number of grammar school places in Kent available, currently for admission in 2016 at 4,803 (4,767 in 2015), but this is a misleading figure for two reasons. Going back to October 2014, the last year for which figures are available, there were already 4859 Year Seven children in Kent Grammar schools, with seven of these still having vacancies, and the number will be higher still for 2015. This is because some grammars will expand the number of places available to help meet demand in April, and additional children will be added through the appeal process.
Secondly, is the high number of out of county children who have passed the Kent Test which annually and wrongly excites much of the media. We have already seen the totally false claim in a local newspaper this week that "Almost 1,500 students who passed the 11+ in Kent set to miss out on grammar school places"
The reality is that for 2015, entry, of the 1,696 out of county children assessed suitable for grammar school, just 429 were allocated Kent places in March 2015, a figure that will have fallen further as some of these found more suitable schools nearer their homes. The majority of the 1,696 will have taken the Kent Test as one of a number of selection tests, sometimes as many as seven, some along with private school tests, and most of these choose to go to another school elsewhere. The increase in the 2016 figure is primarily due to a surge in the number of boys outside the county passing the Kent Test. Some Kent children find a Kent Test pass route to a reduced fees award at a private school or prefer private anyway, removing them also from the figures.
Last year, to the best of my knowledge, although a few girls in the Tunbridge Wells area of West Kent, grammar school qualified were not offered a grammar school place on allocation in March, and all who persevered were accommodated after re-allocations and appeals. Elsewhere there appeared little if any problem with provision of places, and I anticipate a similar picture for 2016 admission.
I suspect the out of county admission figure will be even lower this year with The Judd School changing its admission criteria to give priority to Kent children, so a lot more out of county boys will be disappointed, and last year’s decisions by the two Wilmington’s to adopt similar policies takes greater effect.
If you would like to hear my views on the Kent Test and admission to Kent grammar schools in greater detail, with the opportunity to question me on them, I am talking at the Kent Test Conference in Maidstone next week.