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Tuesday, 19 May 2020 18:55

The Kent 11 Plus and Coronavirus: Part Two


Aspects of the current situation with regard to the Kent Test are that:
  • The date for the Kent Test is still currently set for September. To change it would require government approval. KCC is in discussion with government about an aspect of the Kent Test, presumably about a possible postponement.
  • There is no guarantee that any change of date would see the county free of Coronavirus, or schools operating normally.
  • There are no arrangements in place for children who are: unable to take the Kent Test because their schools are not open, or cannot provide facilities; or whose parents or schools judge it is unsafe to participate; or who are ill in large numbers. 
  • The School Admissions Code of Practice requires Admission Authorities to ‘take all reasonable steps to inform parents of the outcome of selection tests before the closing date for secondary applications on 2nd November so as to allow parents time to make an informed choice of school’.
  • The five thousand out of county children who normally take the Kent Test each year still need somewhere to sit it where it can be independently invigilated. In the past this has taken place in obliging Kent schools.   
As of today (19th May), Kent County County Council has provided no further information about the date of Testing. This is not a criticism as I don't see how they can with the current uncertainties. Registration for the Kent Test remains for a month from 1st June.

This article follows up on my previous of 21st April which explores some implications of a change of date. I use ‘Kent’ throughout to include Kent and Medway, except where I specify otherwise. I do feel so sorry for the children affected and their parents, many of whom must be suffering considerable stress because of the immense uncertainty in this unique situation. I also have enormous sympathy for the KCC Officers trying to guess the unguessable with regard to the timing of the Test.

The KCC website currently states that: ‘Parents will be informed closer to the time if any adjustments need to be made to the Kent Test as a result of the recent school closures for the majority of children’ and no test dates are published.

The Kent Messenger reports that: Medway Council says it is awaiting feedback from the Department for Education on whether any changes will be made to the test.

I have written a number of articles on Coronavirus and School Appeals, including grammar school appeals. You will find the most recent here

There are four main issues explored below: Setting of a Date; Preparation for the Test; the Effect on Disadvantaged Pupils; and Is the Kent Test necessary

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Last modified on Tuesday, 16 June 2020 23:48

1 comment

  • Comment Link Wednesday, 20 May 2020 13:00 posted by Judith Wills

    Thanks for this clear analysis of the problem Peter. Unfortunately it offers no clue as to what KCC should do re the Test. Is there a way out? PETER: KCC does have options, each of which carries a risk which could bring down the whole structure. I don't envy the decision makers

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