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Tuesday, 13 October 2015 18:41

Kent Test Results 2015, Initial figures



Kent Test results have  now been published with to me the surprising feature that the pass mark is the same as last year, an automatic pass being awarded to candidates scoring 106 on each of the three sections - English; maths and reasoning – along with an aggregate score across the three sections of 320. I say surprising, for reasons outlined in an article I wrote after last year’s test, which was the first of the new style test designed to reduce the coaching effect and introduce an element of literacy to the test. This total will again be around 21% of the total age cohort across the county, further details to follow as I receive them.

An additional number of children will have been found to be of grammar school standard through what is called the Headteacher Assessment, usually around 6% of the total. You will find full details of the whole Kent Test process hereOverall, these two processes last year yielded passes for 27% of Kent children in the age cohort.  

As with last year, the number of Kent girls being found suitable for grammar school is higher than the number of boys, although as I don't yet have the size of the cohort, it is impossible to predict with confidence last year's finding that 2.9% more of Kent girls passed than boys, although I anticipate a similar finding.

As last year, I  shall be publishing a second article later when I receive more data from KCC. 

Initial figures released by KCC are as follows:....

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    
  Boys Girls Total Boys Girls Total Other Total
Assessed Suitable for
Grammar Admission 2016
2105 2177 4282 1025 940 1965 11 6258
Assessed Suitable for
Grammar Admission 2015
1963 2080 4043 807 889 1696 14 5753

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.  

Last modified on Monday, 24 October 2016 22:37


  • Comment Link Thursday, 23 February 2017 15:05 posted by Diana

    Please advice what are the maximum scores possible in the Kent tests for the three sections: Maths, English and Reasoning.
    Thank you very much. PETER: 141 in all three sections.

  • Comment Link Tuesday, 24 November 2015 10:27 posted by Helen Erichsen

    Dear Peter,
    I found your analysis of the 2014 Kent Test Results invaluable. Have KCC provided you with the information required to write your second article on this year's results and, if so, when are you planning to write it?

    I'm particularly interested in the maths section. The number of questions in this paper has decreased from 50 in 2013 to 30 in 2014 to 25 in 2015. I don't think this is positive. I would not feel confident about assessing a child's maths ability on the basis of 25 questions.

    I know KCC's aim is to make the Kent Test less coachable but by reducing the number of maths questions to 25, part of the impact may have simply been to randomise the results - which then gives the impression that the Kent Test is less coachable.

    I would be most interested to hear your views on this and await your second article with interest. PETER: Thanks for this. Have had a disagreement with KCC and so FOI result is delayed. In any case, I could not see a way to objectively come to an opinion on your question from data. sorry.

  • Comment Link Monday, 16 November 2015 21:18 posted by Calum MacArthur

    You helped us greatly in the past, your advice at a critical time for us as a family was invaluable and I am sorry to read above that you have been unwell and I would simply wish you a speedy recovery and an enjoyable retirement if that now looms large. PETER: Many thanks for your good wishes. Currently I am taking time to decide what to do next.

  • Comment Link Thursday, 29 October 2015 05:35 posted by Tolu

    We live in dartford and my daughter scored 340 in the kent exam. We live very close to Dartford girls grammar school. What are the chances of her gaining admission, considering that they go by scores and not by proximity to the school. Please advise. PETER: Read the rules. If you live in one of the named Dartford parishes, you will get a place.

  • Comment Link Wednesday, 28 October 2015 09:35 posted by kannan

    Dear sir/Madam,
    My son has scored 326 in the Kent Grammar test,which is above the aggregate score and we live OOC.His maths score was 112,his reasoning was 114 and his English is 100.We are afraid in his English score,as the Result says
    no single paper should be less than 106.Which school should I put for my son in the CAF form.

    PLEASE DO HELP ME WITH THE NEXT STEP OF THE APPLICATION AS THERE IS ONLY FOUR DAYS LEFT TO SUBMIT IT.THERE IS SHORTAGE OF TIME HELP ME FAST PLEASE. Peter: Unfortunately, you haven't bothered to look at my website which states I do not offer advice to ooc enquiries. In any case, I can't see you being offered any accessible grammar school with those scores, so it is irrelevant.. Sorry.

  • Comment Link Thursday, 22 October 2015 19:54 posted by Nomsa Dube

    My son got a total score of 328 in Kent test. l live in Sidcup. Is he likely able to get a place at Dartford or Wilmington grammar? PETER: As made clear in various places on this website I don't have the capacity to spend time on ooc enquiries. In any case, this is not a forum for individual enquiries of this nature. Sorry

  • Comment Link Thursday, 22 October 2015 16:38 posted by Louise Sanders

    Hi Peter
    I know you tend to comment only on KCC and we are ooc, but I would be so grateful for some advice or perhaps you can point me in another direction. Ooc aggregate score was 320 and my daughter got 327. The school she likes the most is Weald. Do you know if this is classed as a "super selective". Our nearest school is Wilmington and they advised that if they have places then any pass is accepted as they are not score driven. Again, I appreciate we are ooc but am not sure where to turn for advice. Many thanks and regards. PETER: You don't need advice, but information. I know you will have visited Weald as you say it is the school she likes most and so will have been given a prospectus and copy of the admission policy. You will find the answer there..I am sure you will also have been told it on the open evening.

  • Comment Link Wednesday, 21 October 2015 10:02 posted by Marion

    Hello Peter,
    My daughter scored 366 and we live in the Kent county area but outside the catchment for Dartford girls.
    My question is what are the chances for her getting into Dartford Girls? Would she be considered out of county out of area?
    It's a bit confusing for me. Please can you shed more light on this bit of the osc for Dartford girls for me.
    Many thanks . PETER: For Dartford girls, it is simply out of area, there is no out of county differential. 366 was on the cusp last year, anyone who chooses to forecast the cut off score is simply guessing. There can be no inside information, it simply does not exist. I wouldn't!

  • Comment Link Monday, 19 October 2015 21:06 posted by Mrs Arzu Anser

    Dear Sir,
    My son has passed the Kent Grammar test.He obtain 345 marks.
    We live in Sidcup which is Bexly council.
    I have heard that he won't be able to get place in Dartford grammar school because they take the pupil from out side borough those who got more than 350 marks.

    I will appreciate if you could let me know what is the new rule for 2016. Best regards: PETER - as my website makes clear I don't provide advice for out of county applicants to Kent schools. Frankly, I would be completely overwhelmed if I tried to assist the multitude of ooc enquiries. However, as you can see if you look at the school website, there are no new rules for 2016, My website also provides information on individual schools.

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